As with most gemstones, you need to make sure you take proper care, as over the years they could lose their beauty and become damaged. You could argue that emerald engagement rings perhaps require even more care than a diamond engagement ring. That beautiful, rich green colour comes at a price, for emeralds are much softer than diamonds, rating only a 7 on the Mohs Scale, compared to a diamond’s perfect 10.
Only the very finest emerald engagement rings are completely clear and flawless. Such gems are even rarer than flawless diamonds. The majority of emeralds have tiny inclusions and fractures, and the larger stones tend to have cracks and are sometimes cloudy in colour as a result. Consequently, it is common to oil emeralds to disguise flaws and enhance their colour; this oil treatment can require care to be taken when using strong soaps and jewellery cleaning liquids as they may not be compatible with the oil. Also be warned that sometimes, after years of wear, emerald engagement rings can need re-oiling, but most jewellers can perform this service.
In order to keep your emerald looking its best, avoid wearing your ring while washing dishes or when using harsh soap, as after a while the substances will accumulate on the bottom of the gemstone, making it dull. Also, as emerald engagement rings are easily scratched, try not to wear your emerald when engaging in physical activity.
When it comes to cleaning emerald engagement rings, this should not be done too frequently and never more than several times a year. However, when it is necessary to clean your emerald, use room temperature water, a soft toothbrush and mild soap. Brush repeatedly on the underside of the emerald to remove the build-up of dirt and grease. A warning, though: take care not to clean an emerald in ultrasonic cleaners, steam cleaners or acetone as these can cause damage to the stone and the setting.
However, don’t think that emeralds are very fragile, because although softer than diamonds, they are still relatively hard stones. It is only during the cutting and setting that a jeweller has to be extremely careful, as the presence of fractures and inclusions can be a challenge. The jewellery cutter has to be careful to avoid touching any inclusions or risk breaking the stone; similarly, when setting an emerald, it can sometime break if there are fissures near a corner. But if your emerald only has its inclusions in its centre, far from edges and corners, then the durability of your gem should not be compromised.