Cubic zirconia, often abbreviated as CZ, has been a popular choice for affordable jewelry and gemstone alternatives for decades. Known for its striking resemblance to diamonds, CZ is celebrated for its brilliance and affordability. However, there’s a common question that arises among CZ enthusiasts and potential buyers: Does cubic zirconia turn or deteriorate over time?
In this article, we will thoroughly examine the topic of cubic zirconia’s longevity, covering all angles and providing you with the most reliable information to make informed decisions about your CZ jewelry.
The Science Behind Cubic Zirconia
To understand whether CZ turns over time, it’s essential to comprehend the science behind this synthetic gemstone. Cubic zirconia is made from zirconium dioxide and is designed to mimic the optical properties of a diamond. Unlike natural gemstones, CZ is created in a controlled laboratory environment, which gives it consistent quality and clarity.
One of the advantages of CZ is its durability. It ranks at 8.5 on the Mohs scale of hardness, making it harder than most natural gemstones except for diamonds. This hardness indicates that CZ is less likely to get scratched or damaged during everyday wear, ensuring its longevity.
Factors Affecting CZ’s Appearance Over Time
While CZ is renowned for its durability, it’s not completely immune to changes in appearance over time. Several factors can influence the way CZ jewelry looks as it ages:
- Wear and Tear: CZ jewelry, especially rings and bracelets, can be exposed to frequent contact and friction. This can lead to minor abrasions and scratches on the surface of the gemstone, affecting its brilliance. However, regular cleaning and maintenance can help minimize these effects.
- Exposure to Harsh Chemicals: Chemicals in cleaning products, lotions, and perfumes can potentially dull the shine of CZ jewelry. It’s advisable to remove CZ jewelry when using such products to preserve its luster.
- Settings and Mountings: The way a CZ is set in jewelry can also impact its longevity. Properly secured settings are less likely to expose the CZ to potential damage.
Maintaining Your Cubic Zirconia Jewelry
To ensure your CZ jewelry maintains its sparkle and brilliance over time, here are some tips:
- Regular Cleaning: Clean your CZ jewelry with a soft brush, warm water, and mild soap to remove dirt and oils that can accumulate over time.
- Avoid Harsh Chemicals: Take off your CZ jewelry before using chemicals or engaging in activities that might expose it to abrasion.
- Proper Storage: Store your CZ jewelry separately in a soft pouch or a lined jewelry box to prevent scratches and damage.