Summer Jewelry Tips: How to Keep Your Accessories Safe in Water

Nothing's more frustrating than ruining your favorite trinkets after an aquatic adventure. For those of you who have the perfect outfit for a beach, cruise, or poolside vacation, you may wonder whether it's safe to get jewelry wet. So, to share the best and most relevant jewelry tips, first consider some of the summer's hottest materials and evaluate their potential risks:

Gold and Silver

Gold and silver (not just gold- and silver-plated jewelry) are actually more fragile than you think. According to The Knot, gold or silver rings could become seriously discolored, as the chemicals such as chlorine in swimming pools and ocean saltwater could wreak major havoc over time.

Minerals

This season, you can find many beautiful mineral items from turquoise to coral that are gracing the runway. However, as a jewelry material, none of these are great in water, whether it's a pool or the ocean. They don't even respond well when you apply sunscreen or perfume because the material is porous. So, if you want to damage the gems, give them a quick soak. Otherwise, stay dry.

Fabric

Fabric jewelry is a hot alternative to metals this season. From satin choker necklaces to embroidered cotton pieces, this trend is particularly loved for its textural interest. However, since you wouldn't swim in a satin dress or cotton skirt, you probably shouldn't get any fabric jewelry wet, either.

Crystal

Many of the hottest items this summer are encrusted with crystals. Unfortunately, they are extremely delicate and don't react well with water, since it can harm the metal and cause discoloration. It's best to remove crystal jewelry before swimming, washing your hands, or applying products such as lotions.

Diamond

Diamonds are generally safe to swim in, but make sure you check the metals in which the diamonds are set. Since so-called "safer" metals such as platinum could discolor when exposed to saltwater or chlorine, it's best to remove engagement rings when going for a swim, unless your ring has titanium prongs.

As you can see, most jewelry materials are not so safe in water. In fact, Jewelers of America cautions everyone to remove all jewelry before entering any body of water. After all, odds are good that you're dealing with more than just the risk of water, but also the sun, chemicals, drastic temperature changes, and vigorous activities. So, when in doubt, remember one of the most important jewelry tips: keep everything safe and sound in a clean, dry place, get the finer jewels insured, and wipe them properly with a soft, mildly damp cloth for better shine after your trip.