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Brief Introduction of Costume Jewelry

What is costume jewelry? Many people may regard it as one kind of authentic jewelry. To state it correctly, costume jewelry refers to jewelry that is made of less valuable materials, including base metals, glass, plastic, and synthetic stones. They are used to substitute precious metals and gems. Also called "Fashion jewelry," costume jewelry is mostly inexpensive and flashy. Costume jewelry is not an asset for it is mainly used for fashion purposes. Because it is often used for stage costumes, it is called "costume jewelry."

History of Costume Jewelry

There is virtually no difference between costume jewelry and antique jewelry. Costume Jewelry dates back to the 1930s. By the definition of antique that would also make it antique jewelry. Costume Jewelry came into being in the 1930s as a cheap disposable jewelry meant to be worn with a specific outfit, but not meant to be handed down through generations. It was intended to be fashionable for a short period of time, out date itself, and then be repurchased to fit with a new outfit purchase, or with a new fashion style. It became available in large quantities during the 30s.

The Restoration of Costume Jewelry

No matter an antique costume jewelry collector or just someone who with great taste in fashion, they tend to take precaution to extend the life their jewelry. Maybe the favorite necklace of today is tomorrow’s antique collectible. Therefore, we list a few basic tips for care and cleaning of costume jewelry, also the safest and the most comprehensive information for you.

There is no doubt that abrasives and moisture are the most common destructors of deterioration of costume jewelry. Costume jewelry is most often produced with worthless metals, usually gold or silver plated, and with or without beads of varying types. These metals tarnish as a result of oxidation of plated jewelry exposed to certain elements such as sulfur, oxygen and certain acids.

Remove jewelry before showering or bathing, grooming and before doing any type of household chores such as washing dishes. Believe it or not, chemicals can be very abrasive and ruin the finish of costume jewelry. So it is very important to be especially careful of bleach, window cleaner, oven cleaners and bathroom cleaners. When you get ready in the morning, don't put your jewelry on until the minute you leave for your new day. Be sure your skin is dry if you have bathed or showered. Water and personal care products can easily tarnish and dull the finish of your jewelry including hair spray, cosmetics, skin care products and perfume.

In order to keep your costume jewelry sparkling, it is suggested that you clean your costume jewelry in a mild, PH balanced soap diluted with water such as a PH balanced shampoo like "Orvus". In addition, you should thoroughly dry the jewelry after exposure it to water by patting gently with a soft, lint free cloth, letting it air dry completely. When you store your costume jewelry, you ought to store it in a dry container with anti-tarnish paper for the sake of protecting it. Always dry your jewelry after exposure to water. Pat with a soft cloth not a paper towel or cotton balls. Paper towels are too abrasive and cotton gets caught in the tiny tinges holding in gem stones which could eventually pull them loose.

When storing your jewelry, be sure they are separated or stored in soft pouches. Just going through your jewelry box looking for the perfect piece to wear causes damage. The rubbing and moving against metal, glass beads and stones dulls their finish and can scratch their surfaces.

Besides those information above, do keep your jewelry away from dust and dirt as much as possible; read labels of commercial jewelry cleaning products carefully before using; make sure they specifically say they are safe for costume jewelry and be sure they do not contain ammonia, vinegar, acid or alcohol. With these considerate tips, costume jewelry customers will be helped to keep their jewelry in pristine condition to be enjoyed for years to come.

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