It’s well known that I love jewelry & the way the pieces look is often more important to me than the quality of materials used in its production. This leads to several problems, such as quick wearing away of the beautiful outer layer or the terrible color changing effects of skin to item contact. If I had metal sensitivities that would also be a problem & I’m certain that some of my readers do have this issue. I’ve tried various techniques & paint jobs in attempt to protect the treasures I am most fond of, which for a long time lead only to failure. Not one to give up on the things I love, I kept searching for a solution to the problem. Finally, I stumbled on a company that looked to totally understand where I was coming from & it’s called Everbrite, Inc (I am not affiliated with them, so I earn nothing if you follow my links, but if you love your faux pieces as much as I love mine, or want to keep your metals beautiful, you should check them out). They have an amazing product called ProtectaClear, which I ordered a small quantity of for initial testing & it probably won’t be long before I order a larger amount (there is a wide selection of sizing).
I must note that I have not tried this product on necklaces or any other pieces with moving parts, so I cannot attest to it’s effectiveness under those circumstances (or whether or not it would fuse pieces that are meant to enjoy a certain amount of freedom). However, I have used it on a ring. Let me set the stage, I had purchased a ring, I knew it was not of the highest quality, but it sure was beautiful & captured my heart. Within a week the darker color of the metal began to rub off & within 2 weeks, despite having a coppery look, it began to blacken my finger (would’ve turned green if it were in fact copper), which was a super embarrassing situation. I tried a variety of solutions & found, it was very difficult to find a clear coating so I used clear nail polish (worked very well actually) but the effect was temporary, then looking for something better I considered metal paints, unable to find anything clear I went with black (as the original color of the ring was gunmetal dark), which could not protect the gemstone & started pealing off after a couple of weeks. I started to lose hope, nothing worked for very long & even the gemstone was losing luster. After many, many searches of my favorite sites & Googling of various phrasings relating to what I was looking for I finally found ProtectaClear, given that the product is by it’s very nature clear, I acquired a new copy of the ring, in attempt to preserve it in pristine quality.
This little bottle came with instructions, that they warned must be carefully followed for best results. Step 1: Polish the item. Okay, it was already polished & sparkly, it was brand new & obviously beautified for sale. Since that first step was optional & it wasn’t needed given the condition of the ring, I skipped it. Step 2: Clean with a solvent. This step is not optional & is in fact in original form quite wordy with a lot of blah blah blah warnings about things that might go wrong with the coats if you skip it. Luckily, I had some mineral spirits lying around from previous projects about the house, so I went outside (to spare the lungs of sensitive persons & the cats about the house) & set to work on cleaning my pretty, also using one of the sponges they had included in the box. Then I let it dry for several hours, solvents tend to dry quickly, but I was taking no chances & made sure my ring was bone dry before moving on to the next phase. Step 3: Paint, spray, or dip half of the item with the solution. I had planned ahead, the website had warned about the stuff coming into contact with plastic, so noted the small opening under the cap I had a small glass jar with a wide opening to pour the stuff into for dipping, as that was the strategy I had decided on. I also had a metal cup that I had purchased earlier with the idea of dangling the item to dry, so drips would not damage it. I then tore up a paperclip to use for dipping & dangling & proceeded with step 3. Step 4: Wait 2 hours to apply second coat, or wait 3 hours for the solution to be dry to the touch & apply to the other side. While I was letting the first coat dry I had to carefully remove attempts at drips, as I did not want permanent bubbles on my ring. Since I wanted to do both sides I waited 3 hours, it was not dry to the touch, so I gave it 3 more hours & it seemed to be in the right state at that point & I moved the paperclip & dipped the other end. I had to be even more careful while drying the second side as it was the side with the gemstone & metallic goings on, so I had to occasionally not only remove drips, but to also remove the areas where it tried to film over openings. So I waited 3 more hours, thinking I could do the second coat on the first side then…… Step 5: It takes 4 to 5 days for solution to fully cure, do not use the item before this time. The paperclip was stuck…. When I removed it, it had left a chink in the armor. So, what I did was apply the second coat to the top, again carefully making sure there were no drip patterns or films over openings, then I waited 5 days. After the top of the ring was fully cured I cleaned up the bottom of the ring & redid it’s coatings, with appropriate wait times between. I waited another 5 days for the bottom of my ring to cure & have been happily wearing it ever since (except at work, as my work is labor intensive & would damage it regardless). The dark color is still going strong with no sign of wear & tear (it’s been over a month of near continuous wear), it still sparkles just like it did when it came out of the box & my finger has zero hints of blackening.
I would recommend doing the coats on one side of the item(s), with appropriate intervals between, then waiting for that side to completely cure before moving on to the other side. This worked spectacularly well for me, whereas following their instructions about the other side did not work out at all, as the solution is only dry to the touch & not really dry at all until it cures. I am so very happy with my results, will totally use this product again & highly recommend it to others who have faced similar issues with their beloved costume jewelry. Hope this review was helpful & have a fantastical week! ❤
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