While gold and rose gold has been trending the past few years, the summer of 2019 is all about silver jewellery.
But while sterling silver jewellery is full of lustre and brilliance, there’s a catch. It gets tarnished!
Between air pollution and daily wear and tear, keeping silver jewellery clean can feel like an uphill battle. But there is hope. Read this guide for five tips on how to clean sterling silver and bring your fave pieces back to life!
The 101 on How to Clean Sterling Silver
If you’ve neglected your silver jewellery over the years, it’s time to take action. Follow these next 5 tips and your silver jewellery will go from dull to dazzling in an afternoon.
1. Prevention Is Better Than a Cure
Instead of cleaning sterling silver, prevent it from tarnishing in the first place. One of the best ways to keep your silver jewellery looking fresh is to wear it regularly. The oils in your skin can keep the silver jewellery looking sparkly for longer.
Besides that, avoid exposure to these damaging elements:
- Household chemicals
- Sulfuric liquids
- Perfumes and cosmetics
In view of this, when you’re doing household chores or cooking, it’s best to take your silver jewellery off. And when you’re getting washed and dressed in the morning, put your silver jewellery on after using all your lotions and potions.
2. Polish to Perfection
If your silver jewellery is becoming tarnished, a simple polish may do the trick.
Silver is a soft metal and will scratch easily. So use a silver cloth or any other non-abrasive cloth to polish your jewellery. Whatever you do, don’t use paper towels or tissue as they contain fibres that may cause scratch marks.
If you’re cleaning silver-plated pieces, be careful not to polish excessively as you may damage the plating.
3. Clean-Up Time
Similar to polishing, use a soft cloth when cleaning silver. If there is dirt embedded between intricate fixtures, try using a soft-bristle toothbrush or cotton earbuds.
If you’re worried about using silver cleaning chemicals, try using green materials instead, such as washing up liquid, vinegar, baking soda, or toothpaste. After cleaning, make sure the jewellery is fully dry before storing it.
Whichever cleaning method works for you, be careful not to do it too often. Excessive cleaning may wear away the shiny finish.
4. Storing Your Silver Jewellery
Exposure to the sulfur-containing substances in the air is what actually tarnishes silver. Store your clean silver jewellery in airtight plastic bags, and this will reduce the chance of tarnishing.
If you can’t use plastic bags, be sure that you keep your silver jewellery out of direct sunlight and in a low-humidity area. You can even use anti-tarnish strips, activated charcoal, chalk, or a packet of silica gel to minimize tarnish.
5. Call the Experts
If you’ve tried all these methods and your silver jewellery has still lost its shine, take your pieces to a professional silver cleaner.
And while all these methods are all tried and tested, if your jewellery is old, fragile, or extremely valuable, it may be best to head to a professional straight away.
Born to Sparkle
If you follow these tips, your silver jewellery will sparkle and shine just like it did when it was brand new!
Of course, knowing how to clean sterling silver is only handy to know if you have silver jewellery to wear. For a stunning selection of silver animal-themed jewellery, take a look at our shop.