How to care opal
There are many different ways to care your precious gemstones and your opal. Various information can easily be studied or recieved by gemstone dealers and the website, however not all information is true or correctly informed so your really need to have a good judgement before you proceed with cleaning your precious opal.
(The following procedure and information will be told or recommended based on my 20 years plus, experiences in dealing with opals)
First of all - your opal is ;
★ From where ?
The origin of your opal is from which country (ie. Australia, Ethiopia, Mexico, Brazil, Indonesia, USA, etc) and if possible, which opal mine was it found (ie. Australian Black opal - is from Coocoran, 3 miles, Sheepyard, Grongary, etc at Lightning Ridge) ?
★ What type is your opal ;
(ie. White opal, crystal opal, black opal, etc)
★ Natural, Treated, Created, Stabilized opal ;
(ie. 100% natural / solid opal or something had been done to opal beside cut and polished stone - capped with some other material or chemically treated, etc)
Since there are many places producing "Opals" and been introduced in everywhere by anyone - it's crucial that you know your opal before ruining it due to tha incorrect cleaning method.
Secondly, if your opal is "Hydrophane Opal" - an opal that can change its body and whole colour when wet therfore it is sometimes called "Cameleon Opal" or "Magic Opal" due to its characteristic / change.
Hydrophane opal are often comes from Ethiopia, Indonesia and USA.
It changes colour when wet and will appeard to its original colour when dried however if the liquid or water contains full of chemical or other substances - yuor opal might not be able to regain its original beauty due to that cause.
Hydrophane opal is more delicate and need not to be too dried so it is often believed to be "soaking it in liquid regularly to avoid natural crack" so it's a bit of trouble when not lookin after it properly.
It is beautiful, affordable and easily available -- but be careful how you clean it, how to restore it and how to wear it.
If it is "Doublet" or "Triplet" opal - although many doublet opal and Triplet opal is glued with better quality glue and new technology, it i still not full opal, only partial, therefore avoid it from getting wet and our experiment on heating opal can show / prove the difference compares to soild.
Many cases with "Doublet opal" can disappoint opal buyers due to the lack of information and a high price markups and what's more sad is, that they lose colour in future.
Your opal is precious and if it is very special to you that money can not replace - please do the right thing by finding out about your opal or opal jewellery. Visiting opal retail stores or see gemologist for certification (cost may apply) might be a good idea before you proceed with incorrect cleaning method.
And lastly - not least, if your opal is from Australia and if it's solid Black opal or Boulder opal.
As far as I am concerned, you don't have to be sensitive about special way of cleaning methods. Soaking it in the liquid does not harm it or do any chage to it.
The best way to clean Australian solid Black opal and Boulder opal is just wear it with care and if the chemical or dust sits on its surface, throughly rinse your opal with warm or cold water and wipe / dry it with clean cloth.
Try not to expose your precious opal under the extreme sunlight for too long since opal contains water (especialy White opal) and getting your opal or any other gemstones exposed under the heat does not do good at all.
Always keep in mind that OPAL is not DIAMOND - its hardness is about 6 (Diamond is 10) and solid opal's beauty can never be replaced, unlike diamond.
Please write to us, make enquiries anytime, perhaps send us photos of your opal / opal jewellery for further advice or instructions of how to care you opal correctly. We might be able to help or recommend the best solution for you before you take incorrect action on your beautiful opal.