Emerald Gemstone Care and Repair

Emerald Gemstone Care and Repair

The category of “gemstones” covers a wide array of precious and semi-precious stones that have differing colors, hardness, density, porosity, and many other properties. In this post we are going to cover emeralds, one of the four precious gemstones, and what you can do to care for emeralds and increase the longevity of your jewelry.

The Four Precious Gemstones Are:

  • Diamonds
  • Emeralds
  • Sapphires
  • Rubies

Natural Emerald Gemstones


Natural Emerald Gemstones

Emeralds are one of the harder variations of gemstones, but they can still be chipped or cracked if proper care is not taken. They rate between 7.5 - 8.0 out of 10 on the Moh’s Scale of Mineral Hardness. For reference, diamonds are the only mineral that score a 10 on this scale and they are 4x harder than the next mineral. Corundum crystal gemstones like sapphires and rubies have a rating of 9 on the scale and are still significantly weaker than diamonds. Diamonds can easily scratch emeralds, sapphires, and rubies.

An important piece of information is that emeralds are typically oil treated. This is done during the processing stage of natural gemstone quality emeralds and it improves the clarity of the finished gemstone. Emeralds are a gemstone that is characterized by having a large amount of inclusions or fractures within the mineral. These oil treatments can help fill the inclusions and improve the appearances of fracture lines to the naked eye. Oil treatments are not permanent and can break down overtime under certain conditions. 

Natural Emerald Gemstones


DO NOT try to oil treat your emerald jewelry at home because you could permanently damage your gemstone. Also avoid ultrasonic cleaning or steam cleaning your emerald. Ultrasonic cleaning can increase already existing fractures within your emerald and cause irreversible damage. Steam heating can loosen the resin or oils that are used to fill fractures in emeralds and cause damage as well. Instead, you can clean your emerald jewelry at home if you follow these tips.

Choosing what to clean your emerald with is critical because oil or chemically treated emeralds can lose their treatment and be damaged if harsh solvents are used to clean them.


Don’t know if your emerald has been oil treated? Assume that it has and use mild, non-stripping soap to clean your jewelry.

Lab-Created Emerald Gemstones

DO NOT soak emeralds. A majority of emeralds contain fractures, and prolonged soaking, especially in hot water, can weaken the fillings in the fractures. Instead of soaking, fill a bowl with lukewarm, soapy water and gently clean the gemstone with a soft cloth. Avoid scrubbing or scraping the top of the gem. Once the jewelry has been gently cleaned, submerge the jewelry in a clean bowl of lukewarm water to make sure all of the soap and residue are off of the jewelry. Finally, take a clean, dry microfiber cloth and dry the jewelry that is now free of all soap residue. Once it is dry, it is ready to be stored or worn.

If you are going to store your emeralds, make sure they are separated from harder gemstones like sapphires, rubies, and diamonds because these can scratch or damage your emerald jewelry. 

These cleaning instructions work for both natural and lab created emeralds. We hope this has helped you learn the best method for keeping your emerald jewelry sparkling at home!


**The information for this blog was obtained from the Gemological Institute of America. If you are interested in learning more about emeralds, we recommend you look at their website as a resource.

Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.