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Waterproof Jewelry: How Transparent E-Coating Can Protect Your Pieces

Written by Anna Currell
February 28, 2023

Have you ever bought a necklace you loved only to realize that it’s tarnished after a few wears? Tarnish is frustrating, disappointing, and unfortunately, it happens with most metals over time. There are a few ways to preserve the shine and luster of your jewelry, like regular cleaning, proper storage, and removing it before activities like swimming or exercising. But if you lead an active lifestyle, you might be wondering: what’s the deal with waterproof jewelry? To really protect it from liquid damage, it’s a good idea to give your jewelry a transparent coating. In this article, we’ll explore all the benefits and pitfalls of e-coating for waterproof jewelry.


What Is E-Coating and How Does It Work?

E-coating is a high-tech process that involves the application of a thin, transparent layer of resin onto the surface of jewelry. This layer is durable and long-lasting in order to fully protect the jewelry from water, sweat, and other liquids that may cause damage. You can e-coat your jewelry with any color resin, but if you choose to go with a completely transparent coat, the finish will be virtually invisible to the naked eye.

The process of transparent e-coating involves several steps, including surface preparation, the e-coating itself, and a final post-processing phase. During surface preparation, the jeweler will thoroughly clean the pieces to remove any dirt, oils, or other impurities that may affect the adhesion of the coating. Next, the jeweler will place the pieces into a special chamber where they’re coated with a thin layer of resin using a process known as electrodeposition. The final post-processing step involves curing the coating to ensure that it is fully bonded to the surface of the jewelry.

The Benefits of E-Coating and Waterproof Jewelry

One of the key benefits of transparent e-coating is that it is highly resistant to water, making it ideal for protecting jewelry that you wear on a daily basis. Water erodes and damages metal over time, so we recommend avoiding showering, swimming, or sweating at the gym while wearing your metal jewelry. But with e-coating, your jewelry can get an extra layer of protection. For example, brands like Hey Harper use a transparent layer over stainless steel jewelry to ensure that the metal’s color lasts longer and that jewelry doesn’t tarnish when it comes into contact with water.

This protection is particularly important if you lead an active lifestyle; it can be a pain to remove your jewelry each time you hop in the shower, go for a swim, or take a long, sweaty walk, especially if these are big parts of your life. You don’t have to choose between being expressive and being active when your jewelry is waterproof.

Another benefit to e-coating is that you can choose any resin color to make your jewelry pop. It’s a great way to change up your jewelry and give it a fresh new look while still keeping it waterproof and protecting it from the elements. In addition to different colors, you can choose a lustrous or matte finish to your e-coating layer as well.


A typical sampler containing various e-coating colors.

When to Avoid Using E-Coating 

While e-coating is a great option for protecting jewelry from water damage, it's not always the best choice. We don’t recommend using e-coating on jewelry that contains porous gemstones such as turquoise or pearls, as the coating can get into the gemstone and cause damage both on the surface and to the inside of the stone. 

If you're considering e-coating for your jewelry, it's important to talk to a professional jewelry specialist to determine whether it's the right choice for your pieces. They can examine your jewelry and help you determine whether e-coating will provide adequate protection without causing any damage.

With its transparent, durable, and long-lasting properties, e-coating can be the perfect solution if you want to keep your jewelry pieces in top condition without having to take them off all the time. Whether you have a cherished family heirloom or a new piece of jewelry, talk to a jeweler and consider using transparent e-coating to protect your pieces from water damage and keep them shining for generations to come. Our jewelers at Quick Jewelry Repairs would be happy to consult and e-coat your jewelry to help you keep your pieces lasting longer without any tarnish in sight.

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