A quick-reference guide to caring for your gemstones

Enticing and dazzling, gemstones have fascinated people since ancient times, due to their varied colours, shape, and brilliance. Their rarity and natural toughness make them precious and prized possessions. But despite their tough nature, gemstones must be looked after if they are to have long and lustrous lives.

For cleaning, most gemstones will respond well to warm water, mild detergent, and a soft brush at home.

However, some gems do have sensitivities. Familiarise yourself with these, particularly if you decide to have them cleaned mechanically, whether at home or professionally.

Here is a quick guide for gems that require extra care to maintain their beauty.


Amber: Avoid chemicals and ultrasonic cleaning.

Beryl: Avoid ultrasonic and steam cleaning.

Citrine: Avoid exposure to heat.

Coral: Avoid chemicals and solvents.

Emerald: Avoid chemicals and ultrasonic cleaning.

Heliodor: Avoid temperature extremes.

Lapis lazuli: Avoid chemicals and ultrasonic cleaning.

Malachite: Sensitive to acid, ammonia, heat, and hot water.

Moonstone: Avoid chemicals and ultrasonic cleaning.

Opal: Avoid chemicals, solvents and ultrasonic cleaning.

Pearl: Avoid chemicals, cosmetics and ultrasonic cleaning.

Peridot: Acids (even from perspiration) and heat can damage peridot stones. Wear with care and protective settings, since surface scratches will diminish this gem’s finish.

Tourmaline: High heat can alter the color, and sudden temperature change (thermal shock) can cause fracturing. Avoid ultrasonic and steam cleaning.

Turquoise: Avoid hot water and household chemicals.

You can read more on the International Gem Society website.

August birthstone: PeridotCloseup view of a gemstone ready for insurance valuation by WJV.Diamond and sapphire ring waiting for a professional valuation.September birthstone: Sapphire


Have a question? Contact us today by filling out this form. A member of our team will be happy to help answer any of your questions.


    Monday to Friday
    8.30am to 4:30pm


    Level 2
    111 Customhouse Quay
    Wellington, 6011


    04 499 5756



    4 logos showing associations that Wellington Jewellery Valuations is affiliated with