How To Keeping Your Silver Sparkling By jays-jewellery
o, who has tarnished silver jewellery……. This blog will help you understand why it tarnishes and how to prevent it or clean it if it is already tarnished.
Lets start with the term ‘Sterling Silver’ used frequently to describe silver. I’m sure it’s a term we have all wondered about at some point and just accepted the fact it’s silver. Simply put, it’s the fineness of the metal, or its purity. So, Sterling Silver is classed as 925 or 92.5% pure silver. There’s another type called Brittannia Silver which is marked 958 or 95.8% pure silver. The vast majority of silver jewellery is made from Sterling Silver
Without getting too technical, it reacts with sulphur in the air which causes the tarnish. Skin ph balance, perfume, moisturisers and swimming in your jewellery can also tarnish your silver.
Frequently wearing your silver jewellery will help prevent it tarnishing. It’s important that when showering, moisturising, applying make-up, perfume or exercising (perspiration) your jewellery is removed. It should be the last thing that you put on.
How Should I Clean Tarnished Silver?
First of all, silver is a soft metal, so you should never use abrasives, not even toothpaste as some people suggest as this will scratch your silver.
For mildly tarnished silver, warm soapy water and a soft toothbrush will suffice, remember to rinse and then dry with a soft cloth. Even a soft microfibre type cloth can remove the majority of tarnish on its own.
For more severely tarnished silver you can buy two things specifically for this. You can buy silver cloths, which are impregnated with a compound that cleans silver. Also you can buy a silver dip where you dip your silver, rinse and dry. However, caution needs to be applied when using this as the fumes from heavily tarnished silver are quite potent and should be used with caution in a well ventilated area. Pregnant women should not use this method either. Special attention should be paid to jewellery with soft stones like opal or pearls as the silver dip could easily damage these. My advice would be to ask a jeweller to do it for you. In all my time I have never seen a customer refused, in fact it’s often offered. Then from the advice above you will be able to maintain your silver jewellery yourself.
If you are to store your silver, keep it wrapped up separately, in acid free tissue paper in a dry and cool place. It is possible to buy anti-tarnish strips to place with your stored jewellery, this can really help.
If you are ever in doubt or would like to ask for some advice, feel free to get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org