Porous Gemstones; what causes damage and how to safely clean them

If your piece contains soft stones, porous stones, glue, or inlay, you should avoid dyes, pigmented makeup, and tinted sunscreen. Natural emeralds, turquoise, opal, pearl, or other soft stones are all under this category. Exposure to harsh cleaners, perfumes, and acids can also damage soft porous stones. Dehydrating or exposing porous stones to prolonged heat can also lead to damage.

 Opals and pearls are especially fragile. Natural Emeralds and rubies require oil to stay strong and should never be cleaned with an ultrasonic, or steamed.

It is safe to clean most gemstones with warm water, gentle soap, and a soft brush. After cleaning, stones should be dried completely. A hair dryer can be used at a cool temperature for a short time to accomplish this.