Once your fiancé puts that engagement ring on your finger, chances are you never want to take it off. We totally get it. However, if you want your bling to continue shining bright for a really long time, it's important not to wear it while you're busy doing these seven things. To break it down, we spoke with experts David Watling and Nadine Tacorian Arzerounian.
Meet the Expert
Here's when to take off your engagement ring if you want to keep it in mint condition.
Before you break a sweat, it's a good idea to take that pretty little ring off. "The materials used in diamond jewelry, platinum, and gold are, to a certain degree, soft," explains Watling. So, if you rock your ring while participating in certain activities that put pressure on these metals, you risk changing their shape. "If the shape of a ring is bent enough, you then risk bending the claws that hold the diamond and your diamond falling out," he continues. The same goes for sports. Any kind of hands-on physical activity (soccer, basketball, tennis, etc.) are other great examples of when to take off wedding bands and engagement rings.
If going without a ring altogether isn't for you, consider purchasing a silicone band to wear when going to the gym or partaking in strenuous physical activity.
Lotions and moisturizers may be great for your skin but not so much for your ring, as excess buildup can diminish the brilliance and dull your stone over time. To protect your rock and ensure a cloudy layer of film doesn't form on it, wait until your hands have completely dried before slipping your bling back on.
Did you know that cosmetics, hair sprays, and perfumes can cause a buildup of grime, weakening the natural sheen of your ring? According to Tacorian Arzerounian, it's true. "I take off my rings the moment I walk into my house so I can seamlessly move through my nightly routine," she says. If you do get any grime buildup on your engagement ring, Watling recommends gently rinsing it with hot water and dishwashing liquid. "Then dry your jewelry with a cotton or linen towel before using a polishing cloth for a sparkling finish," he adds.
Don't forget to secure the sink when washing jewelry so nothing slips down the drain.
Never, ever, ever wear your expensive jewelry in the ocean or in the pool. For one, cold water "shrinks" your fingers, making it that much easier for an already loose engagement ring to disappear during a swim. So that means the ocean should be off-limits for engagement rings. As for the pool, chlorine can damage and discolor the mounting of your ring and your platinum, gold, or white gold wedding band.
Not only can you easily bang up your engagement ring on tough surfaces (think bathroom counters, kitchen floors, etc.) while cleaning the house, you can also do serious damage to the stone and setting. You can even potentially alter the color, thanks to harsh chemicals like bleach and ammonia found in many common household cleaners.
If you've ever wondered "can I shower with my engagement ring," you probably already had a feeling the answer was no—and you were right. The shower can be a dangerous place for engagement rings for two reasons. First, a ring can easily slip off when your fingers are all lathered up and slippery with soap—and if the ring slips off, it's liable to fall down a drain and get lost forever. Second, oily soaps will dull the finish of your diamond and exfoliating soaps will scratch it.
Cooking and food prep is also a major no-no for wearing your rings. Germs and bacteria can easily get lodged into the ring setting. And, just like in the shower, you risk the ring slipping off when you rinse anything in the sink. If you can, it's better to take it off while cooking.