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Detox Your Jewelry Box

The experts at DELGATTO Jewelry share their best tips

While purging your closet to make room for new finds might be a yearly or monthly ritual, the jewelry box often gets overlooked. Do you really need to hang onto to grandma’s antique pearls or that broken diamond necklace you still haven’t repaired? We spoke with Chris Del Gatto, CEO & Chairman of DELGATTO Jewelry, and Mara Opperman, Vice President of DELGATTO and Co-Founder of diamond resale website I Do Now I Don’t, two experts who know exactly when to sell your gems. Here, we compiled their top tips into the ultimate jewelry detox guide, so you can get the biggest sale possible and make room for the new. 

Your jewelry should be a reflection of who you are now, not who you were five years ago.

Make sure you love everything you own. “We’re big fans of quality over quantity,” says Chris Del Gatto. If you have jewelry that you haven’t worn in a year, you’re probably not going to wear it again. If it’s been a year and a half or two years, you’re definitely not going to wear it again.

Keep your pearls—unless they’re natural.

The value of pearls right now is extremely depressed. The value isn’t there because there aren’t buyers. As pretty as they are, cultured pearls are probably not worth selling right now. Natural pearls, or pearls that formed without the help of man, are a different story and are extremely rare. Strands of natural pearls can go for upwards of $100,000. If you’re not wearing them, sell them!

Only hold onto jewelry from a past relationship if you’re wearing it.

Diamonds pieces are especially valuable, and the money you can get for them is of much better use than a stone that is sitting in a vault unworn. I Do Now I Don’t is a great option for selling your engagement ring from a former marriage (or buying a diamond at a discount!).

Get rid of broken jewelry you haven’t repaired.

If you’ve lost one earring or are holding onto a broken piece of jewelry, get rid of it. The experts at DELGATTO often see clients who want to turn old jewels or broken pieces into something new. “This often results in spending a lot of money to customize something new that, chances are, you’re not going to wear,” says Chris Del Gatto. Rather than trying to salvage the old piece, sell it and buy something new that you’ll love and use.

Buy brand name jewelry if you might sell it later on.

Jewelry signed by major houses—Van Cleef & Arpels, Cartier, Tiffany & Co. and many others—is highly collectible, like diamonds or super fine watches. When you’re buying jewelry, it’s worth buying the signed piece, rather than a generic one, in order to get the resale value later on. The same applies to watches.

Be smart about selling gold jewelry.

Before melting down gold jewelry, try selling the gold pieces themselves. Have an expert to appraise the jewelry before you melt it. You might be able to sell it for much more than its melt value. The amount you can get for gold doesn’t change much over time, so sell it whenever you stop using it.

Top image: @tiffanyandco

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