To ensure your Penny Masquerade jewellery lives a long and healthy life it is advisable to follow these instructions.

- Don't leave your jewellery on whilst in the shower or bath, wear rings or bracelets whilst washing up or doing household chores, apply make-up or hair-spray after putting your jewellery on, spray perfume on or near any of your pieces. Our jewellery is made from silver plate, gold plate, raw brass, bronze and sterling silver. All of these metals will tarnish when exposed to moisture. Perfumes, make-up and hair-spray in particular contain strong chemicals which can damage and even destroy the plating.

- Don't sleep or excercise in your jewellery! Excessive friction and perspiration can cause the metal to tarnish and break down after time. It is also advisable not to wear more than one ring on each finger.

- Don't expose your jewellery to strong sunlight. If you're planning on doing a bit of sunbathing pop your jewellery in your bag. The sun's rays are extremely powerful and may bleach the colours and stones in your favourite pieces.

- It is advisable to wipe your jewellery with a 100% cotton cloth or a cotton t-shirt after each wearing. This will remove any residual oils, perspiration, make-up, perfume or body lotion that may have been transferred during the day. Never use tissues or kitchen towels as they can scratch metals, particularly sterling silver. If you get any piece of jewellery wet, quickly wipe the moisture away with a cotton cloth to prevent tarnishing.

- Raw brass pieces may darken and develop a patina over time. Some people prefer this look but if you want to brighten your pieces up and restore them apply a little Auto Chrome cream and wipe off with tissue or kitchen towel (the use of tissue and kitchen towel is not advisable with other metals but raw brass is a hard metal that can withstand this). You could also use a little Brasso to remove the patina, however please note that Brasso - unlike Auto Chrome - is highly abrasive and can scratch the metal if not applied VERY delicately. If using Brasso, tear a tiny bit off and wipe gently and lightly across the surface of the metal. Wipe the residue off with tissue or kitchel towel. However PLEASE NOTE that some of the pieces we use to make our jewellery with are vintage and may already have a patina that we have chosen to retain for aesthetic purposes. If the metal goes darker and you decide to brighten it up please be aware that you may end up making the metal lighter than it was when originally purchased. Should you accidentally remove more of the patina than you anticipated don't panic, it should redevelop over time.

- Store your jewellery correctly. The best way to do this is to put each piece in a bag (fabric bags work well for most metal jewellery, but airtight plastic zip-lock bags are best) and then store it in a box or drawer. This will not only prevent air and light getting to them - which may tarnish metals over time - but also prevent your jewellery from getting scratched and tangled. Chains, necklaces and bracelets are best fastened and kept flat. Freshwater pearls are best stored in fabric bags rather than plastic.