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As Precious as Ancient Artifacts: Caring for and Cleaning Your Roman Glass Jewelry

Glass has gone through quite the evolution since humans started making it over 5,000 years ago. In its early years, glass was an expensive product reserved only for the nobility and rich families. As glass production developed, it became available to more people in the social strata, until it became a part of everybody’s daily routine. The Romans, for instance, used it to create jars, tumblers, and window panes.

Fast forward to the future, experts have excavated a huge number of ancient glass artifacts, and artisans reshaped these fragile fragments into fine jewelry, which people call Roman glass jewelry. The old glass containers are reborn as necklaces, bracelets, pendants, and more.

Since the type of glass made back then isn’t as durable and strong as what we use now, taking care of your Roman glass jewelry can be a bit tricky. In this piece, we have compiled tips for jewel collectors and glass cleaning solutions franchises to help them handle valuable Roman glass jewelry properly.

Roman Glass at a Glance

Genuine pieces of Roman glass are over 2,000 years old. These beautiful pieces of glass have a unique delicate patina that gives them a dreamy and romantic finish that’s the color of the sea. Unlike modern glass, however, Roman glass tends to react to common liquids.

In fact, exposure to liquids, even water, can cause discoloration or disintegration. So, here are some reminders to prolong the lifespan of your jewelry:

  • Do not wear the jewelry to the shower or a bath. The water and soap could damage it.
  • Don’t take a dip in the pool or ocean while wearing them. The saltwater or chlorinated pool water could damage the glass.
  • Avoid wearing the glass jewelry to very humid areas or places that experience heavy rains.
  • Avoid bringing the jewelry in contact with perfume, body lotion, hairspray, or massage oils.

This list seems to tell you not to wear your Roman glass jewels at all. But to maintain their pristine state, you have to be cautious in wearing them. It’s best to reserve the pieces for important occasions — events that involve a comfortable environment for you and your jewelry piece.

Cleaning Roman Glass Jewelry

Man cleaning jewelry

Most jewelers advise against using ordinary cleaning products for the glass. In fact, they’d tell you to clean only the metal the glass is set on using a soft polishing cloth and keep the glass untouched. Don’t use any chemicals or water to clean the metal because these could spill over to the glass and damage it.

Keeping the delicate glass untouched will increase its lifespan, while cleaning the metal parts enhances the look of the entire piece.

Even though Roman glass requires utmost care but provide limited use to the owner, it is a desirable piece for jewel lovers across the world. Some consider these precious trinkets as archeological gems, even as they take them out and wear them every now and then. With proper care and cleaning methods, your Roman glass jewels could survive for a few hundred years more.

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