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Jewellery Guide

Jewellery Guide

When it comes to buying jewellery, there are so many types of stones, finishes, styles and materials to choose from, it can be hard to know where to start. In this guide, we take you through everything you need to know, from helping you find the right ring size to caring for your jewellery.

PRECIOUS METAL

Sterling silver

Silver is the most common of the precious metals. It is popular and not as expensive as gold, although stronger and lighter in weight. However, it can tarnish as well as scratch or bend easily. Sterling silver consists of 92.5% silver and 7.5% base metal for strength.

Gold

All our fine gold jewellery comes in 9, 14, 18 or 24 carat gold. We also do gold-plated jewellery, which is when a layer of gold covers silver or another base metal.

14, 18, or 22 carat gold over sterling silver is called vermeil. To be considered vermeil, the gold must be at least 10 carat and 2.5 micrometres thick. There's also gold filled jewellery, which has a thicker (one carat) layer of gold over the underlying metal.

Platinum

Platinum is the most expensive precious metal. It is very strong and has a white, silver colour making it ideal as a mount for diamonds. This is a popular metal for engagement and wedding rings and has become increasingly fashionable in recent years.

Nickel content

Some customers may be allergic to the nickel content in jewellery. As jewellery is made from a mixture of metals, products might not be entirely nickel free. In order to conform to the 'nickel safe' standard, manufacturers ensure that the nickel content is kept to a low level. All jewellery now produced is deemed nickel safe, however, customers who react strongly to nickel should buy gold of a high carat.

Jewellery Caring

Semi-precious stones

To clean stones, wipe with a moist cloth after each wear. Protect them from exposure to hair spray, perfume or cosmetics as certain chemicals can damage semi-precious stones over time. It's best to store them in separate fabric pouches or wrap them in pieces of soft fabric to prevent scratching. You can also keep them safe in a jewellery box.

Pearls

Wearing pearls keeps them lustrous and iridescent as the natural oils from your skin will give them shine and keep them protected.Put pearls on last when getting ready and make them the first thing you take off when back home. Keep them away from household chemicals including perfume, makeup and hairspray as they can dull the lustre.Store pearls in soft fabric bags separately from other jewellery to avoid scratching their tender surfaces.

Sterling silver, gold and diamonds

If silver hasn't been worn for a while, you'll notice it takes on a dark, grey-black layer. This is a sulfide build-up due to a chemical reaction that occurs when silver is exposed to the air and humidity.

When cleaning silver, protect your hands with waterproof gloves or silver polishing mitts. Then use a silver dip or a silver polish to clean tarnished silver, always following the manufacturer's instructions. You can also use a silver cloth or a sunshine cloth. There are also many homemade recipes that can be used to clean silver, but it is always wise to test the method on the back of a piece of jewellery.

To add sparkle back to gold and diamond jewellery, try our special jewellery cleaner that's suitable for gold, platinum, diamonds and most other precious stones.

However careful you are, your jewellery will inevitably gather dirt and residue from hand lotion, hairstyling products, human skin and oil which will, over time, cause your diamond to sparkle less brightly. The good news is that this is easily remedied at home with very little cost or effort.

  • Immerse the piece in warm water with a little gentle household detergent e.g. washing up liquid or a non-conditioning shampoo.
  • Once the warm water has loosened the oils scrub gently with a small brush, an old, soft toothbrush is ideal.
  • Take care to clean under the stone where oils and dirt gather.
  • Finally, pat dry with a clean cloth and leave to air dry thoroughly before buffing softly with a lint-free cloth.

Gold rings can acquire scratches over the years, particularly in higher carat golds, which are softer. A jeweller can repair these, although there will be a slight loss of metal as the surface will be buffed over. White Gold is usually plated with Rhodium, a metal from the platinum family, for extra lustre, protection and 'whiteness'. You may wish to have your White Gold jewellery re-coated after a few years to retain its original lustre and keep it bright and white continuously.

Platinum rings may also acquire scratches that a jeweller can repair. The scratches on Platinum will not cause the same metal loss, however, and the result of expert repairs will generally be reassuringly smooth.

Palladium is the hardest metal used in the manufacture of jewellery and should be relatively impervious to scratches. None of these metals are subject to tarnishing.

It is a good idea to have your jewellery cleaned professionally once a year, they should also ensure prongs and mountings are secure. It is advisable to entrust your jewellery to an expert, rather than to try and clean it yourself in any other way than gentle soapy water as described above.

When not wearing your jewellery, it is best to keep it in a jewellery box or roll. Each item should be individually stored in a soft bag. The most common cause of scratches and suface damage to jewellery is contact with other pieces of jewellery.

Finally, although your jewellery may have a value to you that cannot be replaced, it is still essential to insure your items. Our engagement ring and diamond experts will be delighted to guide you through the options for insuring your engagement ring, and they are available for live chat (online, on the phone or in person) 7 days a week. You can also email us on service@kissingsolitairediamonds.com for advice.

Ring Sizing Guide

 

conversion chart for ring sizes

Inside diameter Inside circumference Sizes
(in) (mm) (in) (mm) United States,
Canada and
Mexico
United Kingdom,
Ireland,
Australia and
New Zealand
China,
Japan,
South America
India Italy,
Spain,
Netherlands,
Switzerland
0.458 11.63 1.44 36.5 0        
0.466 11.84 1.46 37.2 ¼        
0.474 12.04 1.49 37.8 ½ A      
0.482 12.24 1.51 38.5 ¾      
0.49 12.45 1.54 39.1 1 B 1    
0.498 12.65 1.56 39.7      
0.506 12.85 1.59 40.4 C     0.5
0.514 13.06 1.61 41   1 1
0.522 13.26 1.64 41.7 2 D 2 2 1.75
0.53 13.46 1.67 42.3     2.25
0.538 13.67 1.69 42.9 E 3 3 3
0.546 13.87 1.72 43.6   4 3.5
0.554 14.07 1.74 44.2 3 F 4   4.25
0.562 14.27 1.77 44.8 5 5 4.75
0.57 14.48 1.79 45.5 G     5.5
0.578 14.68 1.82 46.1 6 6 6
0.586 14.88 1.84 46.8 4 H 7   6.75
0.594 15.09 1.87 47.4   7 7.5
0.602 15.29 1.89 48 I 8 8 8
0.61 15.49 1.92 48.7 J   9 8.75
0.618 15.7 1.94 49.3 5 9   9.25
0.626 15.9 1.97 50 K   10 10
0.634 16.1 1.99 50.6 10   10.5
0.642 16.31 2.02 51.2 L   11 11.25
0.65 16.51 2.04 51.9 6 11 12 11.75
0.658 16.71 2.07 52.5 M 12   12.5
0.666 16.92 2.09 53.1 13 13 13.25
0.674 17.12 2.12 53.8 N     13.75
0.682 17.32 2.14 54.4 7 14 14 14.5
0.69 17.53 2.17 55.1 O   15 15
0.698 17.73 2.19 55.7 15   15.75
0.706 17.93 2.22 56.3 P   16 16.25
0.714 18.14 2.24 57 8 16 17 17
0.722 18.34 2.27 57.6 Q     17.5
0.73 18.54 2.29 58.3 17 18 18.25
0.738 18.75 2.32 58.9 R   19 19
0.746 18.95 2.34 59.5 9 18   19.5
0.754 19.15 2.37 60.2 S   20 20.25
0.762 19.35 2.39 60.8 19 21 20.75
0.77 19.56 2.42 61.4 T     21.5
0.778 19.76 2.44 62.1 10 20 22 22
0.786 19.96 2.47 62.7 10¼ U 21 23 22.75
0.794 20.17 2.49 63.4 10½ 22   23.25
0.802 20.37 2.52 64 10¾ V   24 24
0.81 20.57 2.54 64.6 11 23 25 24.75
0.818 20.78 2.57 65.3 11¼ W     25.25
0.826 20.98 2.59 65.9 11½ 24 26 26
0.834 21.18 2.62 66.6 11¾ X     26.5
0.842 21.39 2.65 67.2 12 25 27 27.25
0.85 21.59 2.67 67.8 12¼ Y   28 27.75
0.858 21.79 2.7 68.5 12½ Z 26   28.5
0.866 22 2.72 69.1 12¾   29 29
0.874 22.2 2.75 69.7 13   27 30 29.75
0.882 22.4 2.77 70.4 13¼ Z1     30.5
0.89 22.61 2.8 71 13½     31 31
0.898 22.81 2.82 71.7 13¾ Z2   32 31.75
0.906 23.01 2.85 72.3 14 Z3     32.25
0.914 23.22 2.87 72.9 14¼     33 33
0.922 23.42 2.9 73.6 14½ Z4     33.5
0.93 23.62 2.92 74.2 14¾     34 34.25
0.938 23.83 2.95 74.8 15     35 34.75
0.946 24.03 2.97 75.5 15¼       35.5
0.954 24.23 3 76.1 15½     36 36.25
0.962 24.43 3.02 76.8 15¾       36.75
0.97 24.64 3.05 77.4 16     37 37.5