I nevvvvvvvvvver used to take any of my jewelry off, ever. I would give my ears a break and that's about it. I was almost willful in the fact that all my jewelry stayed on, all of the time. I was prideful in its permanence and I thought the idea of taking it off at night was just dated, old fashioned, must’ve applied to bigger, or more precious jewelry than I was wearing. That was all before I turned 34 and started this company.
The first time I ever really heard someone speak emphatically on the issue was in my jewelry training at Revere Academy in San Francisco. Mentor and instructor Nancy Wintrup would speak with such fervor on the issue. And I let it go in one ear and out the other. I really thought it was a generational thing, like the way my Great Aunt used to talk about the importance of wearing gloves.
Oh but how quickly I learned this lesson and how earnestly I now embrace it. Now I know why Nancy was so emphatic. She is a master goldsmith that has seen many decades of repairs come across her bench. She’s seen jewelry suffer from wear, tear, and negligence. Sleep is the number one culprit for breakage of chains. We all do it. Toss, turn, thrash around between the sheets. Chains are not only some of the most delicate components of jewelry they are also some of the most expensive, and so often a broken chain will be destined for the smelter, not the repair bench. Also, jewelry gets disgustingly full of gunk if it stays on us all the time; it builds up layers of skin cells and lotion and oil and dirt and lint and grim. You know what I’m talking about and it’s gross.
Just as important as giving your jewelry a break during sleep is being mindful of activities that might impact delicate handwork. That seems like it should go without saying but I’m guilty of breaking jewelry while doing menial tasks. If you’re like me and spend a good chunk of your work hours shlepping to-and-fro, leave the diamonds at home and switch out for a gold band. Ditto goes especially for turquoise, lapis, malachite and coral. These stones aren’t as hard or durable as the almighty diamond, so avoid putting them at risk of being broken when you’re carrying loads, yard work, really getting into in the kitchen, etc.
So those are the practical reasons for being mindful of when you should take off your jewelry, but let me go a little deeper. I have found that the real benefit of taking it all off every night is routine. And in time, routine becomes ritual. For me, this ritual has become a daily exchange with the jewelry I treasure. As I put my jewelry on, piece by piece, it feels like a blessing—the energy of talismans in the form of a little sparkle. At night, as I take each piece off, it feels like a thank you—appreciation for that extra sparkle and shine.
And, just like my mom used to say about remembering to take your underwear off at night, it sure does feel good to let your skin breathe.