Mara Blak assures all metal and gemstones are ethically and sustainably sourced as part of our commitment to the advancement of human rights and ethical social and environmental practices. Each material is unique and requires a specific type of care as outlined below. If in doubt, take your jewellery to a qualified jeweller for cleaning.
Gemstones are beautiful and delicate stones that require great care to ensure long-term vibrancy and good condition. Gemstones require different cleaning methods as they can react very differently to heat, light, acids and scratching.
As a rule, keep gemstones away from flame, heat, high temperature and direct sunlight.
We suggest using individual jewellery bags or jewellery boxes with foam inserts to stabilize the gemstone and protect it from making contact with other jewellery. Another option is to store your gemstones in an airtight plastic bag to ensure it will not tarnish from moisture in the air.
If possible, wear your perfumes and colognes in areas that won’t come in contact with your gems. In the case of pearls, avoid contact with skin as they are sensitive to the acids in perspiration. Where it isn’t practical to keep them away from your skin, wipe them clean with a damp cloth immediately after wearing them. Remove stains with a mild soapy solution on a rag. Don’t dip pearls into liquid. Dry thoroughly and blow out drill holes carefully as trapped moisture can cause discolouration.
Never clean gemstone jewellery in mechanical or ultrasonic cleaning systems, with steam, ammonia or by boiling. Most jewellery and gemstones in earrings or other pieces without drill holes can be cleaned with warm water, mild soap, and soft brush. Make sure you use mild soap only (no other cleaning solution) and a soft brush (not a toothbrush).
As with many precious metals, sterling silver can oxidise over time and needs to be properly maintained in order to maintain a radiant look.
Sterling silver should be stored in a cool dry place, ideally in a soft piece of felt or cloth. It is best to store each piece separate to prevent them knocking together or scratching.
Clean your sterling silver with a mild soapy water solution and pat dry wit a soft cloth. Cleaning solutions are also available for use with silver but we caution against using them on jewellery that features other materials such as gemstones.
Gold-Plated Brass or Copper
Avoid scratching gold-plated jewellery by storing each piece wrapped separately in a soft cloth.
Substances such as perfume, oils, perspiration and chlorine may react with your gold plated jewellery and cause tarnish or corrosion. As such, remove while swimming and clean your items with a cotton ball and or soft cloth after each wear. For occasional deeper cleaning, a mild soapy solution and soft cloth technique is recommended. Never use a chemical jewellery cleaner or polishing cloth on plated jewellery- this will cause the plating to thin and eventually come away.
The simplest and most effective way to clean your stainless steel jewellery is with soap and water. Soak the jewellery in a mild soapy solution for a few minutes and rub dry with a soft cloth. Alternately, make a thick paste with baking soda and water, rub onto jewellery and gently buff off with a soft cotton or felt cloth. Never use chlorine or corrosive chemicals to clean stainless steel. There are some commercial jewellery cleaners available that are safe for stainless steel- be careful to read the product carefully to ensure its’ suitability before use.
Like other metals, stainless steel can become scratched and dull. To prevent this, store each piece wrapped in a cloth or velvet pouch to stop them from rubbing against each other.
Leather Wrap Bracelets
Leather is a naturally occurring material and therefore needs to be treated with care. To ensure you are adequately caring for both the leather and any gemstones or beads on your bracelet, it is best to clean only with a soft, damp cloth. Never use chemicals or abrasive cleaning equipment.
Never wear your leather bracelet while swimming or exercising. Excessive moisture, chlorine and the oils in body sweat can case swelling and deterioration of the leather. Always keep your leather jewellery away from heat sources. A protective spray designed for leather can be used but be careful to avoid spraying any beads or gemstones.