General Product Care

Caring for Opals
Although Opals are a magnificent and unique gem, they are softer and more fragile than most crystalline gems as diamonds or sapphires.Opal is a unique and beautiful gemstone which will last indefinitely if properly cared for. 
Opals are composed of between three and 20 per cent water and as such, they should not allowed to freeze or dry out. In the case of solid opal, an occasional light rinsing in fresh water is recommended. However, never immerse a triplet or doublet opal in water for any reason whatsoever because such an action may break down the adhesive quality of the glass.
Due to the differing percentage of water, Opals may easily become brittle, thus if stored too dry or exposed to heat over a longer period of time, Opals will show fissures and the play of colour will become paler. Therefore, Opal jewellery should be worn as often as possible, for then the gemstone will receive the needed humidity from the air and from the skin of its wearer.
If you wear your opals daily, they could lose some of their polish over a long period of time. In just a few minutes an experienced jeweller can simply re-polish the surface to bring back your opal's original brilliance and shine.

How do I clean opal?
Solid opal can be cleaned with a soft detergent in warm water using a soft cloth or brush. Once cleaned the opal should be rinsed in clean water to remove any residue. Doublets and triplets can be wiped with a damp soft cloth but should not be soaked.

Can I put opals in water?
Yes you can. Solid opal can be wet or soaked in water without any problem. This is not advised if the stone is a doublet or triplet as the water may affect the cement or adhesive bonding the opal layer to the crystal cap or backing layer.

What do I do if my stone loses its shine or becomes scratched?
You should take your opal to a reputable jeweler who knows about opal. If the stone needs re-polishing, this can generally be done for a very reasonable price. He can also check for claw damage and make sure that the setting is still sound.

What about doublets and triplets?
Both are layered opals which do need a little more care than a solid stone. Doublets consist of a slice of precious opal which has been cemented to base of common opal potch or more commonly ironstone. Triplets are similar except that they also have a clear crystal cap cemented to the top of the precious opal slice in order to protect and enhance it.
While both can be cleaned with lukewarm water and mild detergent it is not a good idea to wash or immerse them in water as this may affect the cement bonding them together. For the same reason it is not recommended to use an ultrasonic cleaner for cleaning jewellery containing doublets or triplets.

How do I store my opals?
Generally storing your opals wrapped in a soft cloth is all that you will ever need to do.
If you keep you opals in a de-humidified atmosphere such as a safety deposit box or bank vault for long periods some people advise putting them in a sealed plastic bag with a little water or damp sponge to protect them from sudden temperature and humidity changes, however this is not really necessary.