What Types of Beach Earrings Are Safe and Durable?

A shimmering sliver of gold dangling from your ears or a delicate chain gracefully draped across your neck can do wonders to complement a sun-kissed tan. But many people are hesitant to bring their fine jewelry to the beach for fear of losing it in the ocean or damaging it with salt, sand, and sunscreen. We talked to experts to get their advice on what types of beach earrings are safe and durable enough for a day in the sand, surf, and sun.

Can I wear gold earrings to the beach?

“Jewelry isn’t invincible,” Fitzpatrick says, but precious metals like platinum and fine silver can comfortably take a dip in the water. Just be sure to keep them away from any silicone-based or rubber earring backs, which may oxidize and degrade the metal over time. Stainless steel earwires are a great choice, because they are sturdy and won’t react with the metals in your jewelry.

Kahane adds that you should also keep your eye on your rings when you’re in the water. Fish and other sea creatures see reflected light very well underwater, and they may mistake shiny metal for the glimmer of their own scales. This curiosity is likely harmless, but it could cause a painful (and expensive) loss if your engagement or wedding ring slips off in the waves.

A simple rinse in slightly soapy water can help protect your jewelry from oxidation after you’re done at the beach. And don’t put your jewelry in plastic Ziploc bags, which prevent it from breathing and encourage tarnish.

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