There are a lot of diamonds in this world. And we mean A LOT. The material is hardly rare, and it’s been used to make jewelry for a long, long time. Now, we know that that doesn’t mean that we all have a box of diamonds in the closet gathering dust – though that would be pretty neat.
But the fact is that there are probably diamonds to be found in our houses, and we all want them to stay nice and shiny for a long time! That brings us to the main point that we’re trying to address – can soap ruin a diamond?
We admit it’s a strange question, but let us explain.
Diamond is the hardest material we know – and keeping it spotless and shiny means keeping its value high. It’s virtually indestructible, but there are specific standards that each diamond has to meet to get priced high.
So, let’s see how you should keep a diamond clean the right way – with or without soap!
Can Soap Ruin A Diamond?
So, let’s get the main point out of the way right at the beginning:
NO, diamonds can’t get ruined by soap. It doesn’t matter if you wash them with dish soap, hand soap, or any other cleaning product you may find in the house – they will be fine!
There are some tips that we can recommend to make sure your diamond stays good-looking, though.
Before we start, we have to take a minute and just clear a few things up. Diamonds are very tough; there are no two ways about it. But it doesn’t mean that they can’t get damaged.
Now, each valuable diamond received its hefty price tag by going through four rating categories and facing each one. You see, the price of a diamond depends on a few things – clarity, cut, carat weight, and color. These four categories are called the 4Cs. The less color a diamond has, for instance, the better.
The highest graded diamonds have a lot of weight, no color, a perfect cut with no inclusions or scratches to be found. Why are we mentioning this?
Well, it’s essential to know what kind of diamond you’re dealing with if you’re planning on cleaning it by yourself. If you have a big spotless translucent diamond that can fit in your hand, it’s probably a good idea to call a professional!
But if you have a small diamond on a ring or a pair hanging off your favorite earrings, then feel free to take matters into your own hands.
Don’t get fooled by those professionals, though. If you take your diamond to a pro to get cleaned, more often than not, they’ll use the same dish soap that you were planning on using back home.
So, why waste the money?
Don’t get us wrong; there is some heavy-duty equipment in those stores, but it’s usually just not necessary. In the case of cleaning the diamonds on your jewelry, it’s usually residues of oil from your skin that need to get cleaned off – among other build-ups that occur over time.
Soap is perfectly fine for this; the equipment for more serious cleaning is used for rough diamonds that still have a whole shaping process to go through. These are usually stones that are not even ready to be sold in the market, anyway.
But let’s take a look at what soap does to your diamond and how you should use it at home.
Keeping Your Diamond Clean And Shiny
So, what is it that needs to get cleaned off your diamond? Or, to be more precise, what’s keeping your diamond from shining like it used to? Well, many factors need to be included in the equation but don’t worry, we’ll go over all of them.
First, you’ll have to determine what kind of diamond you’re dealing with here.
As we already mentioned, a diamond can be completely translucent, or it can have spots and inclusions that prevent it from letting light through. That usually makes the gem appear to have a yellowish hue to it.
The cleaner the precious stone is, the higher its grade will be. And with higher grades comes higher value. Inclusions and blemishes can be on the surface of the diamond, or they can be on the inside.
Now, it might sound like you can take care of those surface blemishes with a bit of scrubbing, but that is pretty far from the truth. If you have in your hand a perfectly cleaned diamond that still has spots and stretches on it, you probably won’t manage to get those off.
The only thing that can scratch a diamond is another diamond – and the only spots they can have are ones that occurred under extremely high heat and pressure. So, what does this mean? Well, among other things, it means that dish soap won’t help much with cleaning an included diamond. Nothing will, really.
The only way to get rid of surface blemishes is to cut them off entirely. That’s what professionals do when cutting diamonds in the beautiful shapes that we know and love. They get rid of a top layer of a diamond if they feel that the blemish doesn’t run too deep.
That obviously cuts down on the carat weight – but it helps with other grading factors.
Inclusions, on the other hand, can’t be dealt with efficiently. They’re on the inside of the diamond, so the only thing you can do is break the diamond into smaller pieces that don’t have the inclusions.
Again, this affects the carat weight, but it might just save the diamond’s value if the smaller pieces have less color and are more translucent.
Alright, but let’s say you have a nice ring diamond that you would like to clean. It’s mostly translucent and allows light to shine through to all of its sides. It might have inclusions or blemishes, but they’re not visible to the naked eye, so it’s not an issue.
How should you clean it if it lost its shine throughout the years? Well, soap will do!
Get a small bowl – small enough that you can still see the diamond once you pop it inside. Fill the glass with warm water, and pour some mild dish soap. The amount of soap you want to use is your choice, so pour away freely.
You can leave the diamond in the mix for as long as you want. However, our suggestion is to let it sit overnight. That way, you’ll be able to put on your beautiful jewelry in the morning!
The only thing that we feel needs to be mentioned is that just because your diamonds will get cleaned up in this soapy mix, it doesn’t mean that the rest of the jewelry won’t get affected.
It’s vital to check what kinds of materials the jewelry is made of first. Once you’re sure that it can go in the mix and not get harmed, clean away.
Let’s face it; it’s a bit problematic if you can easily pop a diamond out of your engagement ring and clean it. You want your jewelry to be sturdier than that!
Read Also: Can Acetone Ruin A Diamond?
Diamond Cleaning Solutions
What if you don’t want to use just plain dish soap to clean your diamonds?
And if it’s so effective, why are there so many diamond cleaning solutions that can be found in stores and online? These products must do a better job than regular soap, right?
Well, not necessarily – but let us explain.
Diamond cleaning solutions are great, don’t get us wrong. But the truth of the matter here is that they’re pretty much just regular cleaning products.
They might have certain chemicals that are good at cleaning residues commonly found on diamonds, but we can assure you that soap does the same job – for a lot less money.
The price is pretty much the only difference, if we’re being honest. Sure, specific solutions are made for rough diamonds or are used to clean off things that would never find their way into your home – let alone your diamond.
So, with all that said, we can’t tell you NOT to use diamond cleaning solutions as they will do the job fine.
But if you want to save a little money, soap will turn your diamond shiny, too.
Can A Diamond Get Scratched?
There is another concern that we ran into while researching this subject. We briefly touched on it already, but since it’s a question that’s asked so often, we felt the need to elaborate on it further. Can a diamond get scratched?
It’s a fair question. The idea of having a material that’s utterly resilient to scratches is a strange one, so it’s fine if you think twice before scrubbing at your diamond with all kinds of cleaning products.
Here’s the thing: A diamond won’t be fazed at all by any scrubbing that you might do in an attempt to clean off the surface residue.
So, if you would like to go with that technique, go for it! But do you need to go through all that effort?
Unless you have a diamond that’s big enough to be held in your hand while you scrub it with the other one, it’s not that necessary. As we already mentioned, the things that get stuck on diamonds are mostly from your skin and the surrounding. All of them get dissolved with soapy water.
So, sure, your diamond won’t get damaged or scratched – but we suggest skipping the scrubbing altogether. Why waste time and effort on cleaning when you can just leave it in some soap overnight?
And that’s not all.
While your diamond is indestructible, the rest of your jewelry probably isn’t. So, unless you only have the diamond and no other material around it, skip the possible scratches.
Soap will do!
Learn More: What Can Destroy A Diamond?
When To Reach Out To A Professional
Now, we mentioned many times that you could do pretty much all of the above in the comfort of your own home. But when do you need to go to a professional? Surely soap can’t work for every occasion?
Let’s say that you found an old diamond in the family home and you’re not sure what to do. It might look like a typical diamond, but if you’re not sure of the origin, you may want to have it checked.
Diamonds can’t get scratched or damaged – but crystals sure can. So, if you don’t want to damage your gems potentially, make sure to know what kind of stone you have.
The next case in which it might be a good idea to reach out to someone is when you just can’t seem to clean your diamond properly. Inclusions and blemishes aside, if soap and water don’t work, it may be time to use more serious equipment.
So, there you have it! We hope that you don’t have any more doubts or questions when it comes to the whole “can soap ruin a diamond” thing.
Sure, it seems strange that the soap you have in your kitchen or bathroom can clean something like a diamond – but we assure you that it does the job perfectly.
Keeping your gems shiny is essential if you have them on you at all times. They’re not going to get so dirty that they become unrecognizable, mind you, no matter how much time passes between cleanings.
But it doesn’t hurt to get some soap and water, that’s for sure!
See Also: Can Acid Dissolve Or Melt Diamonds?