Tips on cleaning Sterling Silver
Just want to go over one little tip on polishing cloths and a little bit of theory.
Many of you already know Sterling Silver tarnishes. It’s the nature of the beast. It’s also kind of a test to prove you actually have real 925 Sterling Silver. Although I do have to say, if your silver is from Italy and it says 925 Sterling it is Sterling. The chances of it being less than 925 Sterling really isn’t even worth mentioning. Italian factories are known for their pride and aren’t going to rip people off for lower content silver.
There were times in the past when this was indeed happening to 14KT gold and that was truly horrible. I actually knew one of the importers of gold chains who supplied a very big chain throughout the US who did bring in low carat gold. Holy smokes, that was a true kerfuffle!
Okay back to silver. The easiest way to handle tarnish is to keep your silver stored in almost anything airtight. We use plastic bags. It has worked for us for many many years. Of course a treated jewelry box for silver jewelry is excellent. I just don’t find many people have one of those. If you don’t have a plastic bag handy and you are in a hurry, put your silver piece in the dresser drawer until you get a bag. Out of the air equals a happy piece of silver.
Now if you keep your silver in a plastic bag this keeps the tarnish factor WAY WAY WAY down. But what if the piece has been in the bag for years and needs a little cleaning up? This is where the next best thing is a polishing cloth. Here is my tip regarding polishing cloths, wear some sort of a rubber or latex or plastic glove when using the cloth. This keeps the chemical on the cloth and not coming off the cloth onto your hands. And one more thing….you can polish and polish and run a chain through a polishing cloth and you will see black lines on your cloth as if tarnish is still coming off your cloth. It isn’t, once you see the piece is clean-what is happening is the chemical on the cloth is being used up!
Silver is a hardy metal. It really is in my humble opinion a beautiful metal. There are so many designs in silver. This metal is great for so many stones and shells and just unique pieces at really affordable prices compared to gold. It can be just so darn frustrating when your go to wear a pendant or chain and it has tarnished. Boy do I get that!!! So keep it in a little plastic bag--ONE piece per bag, you never want silver touching silver and keep a polishing cloth handy with a pair of rubber gloves because a polishing cloth will last for years this way. Polishing clothes are a great investment. We sell the one I like the best. We also sell it with a pair of rubber gloves and a little jewelry survival kit.
One more thing, never wash your polishing cloth. All the anti-tarnish material will be washed away. It is perfectly normal to see your cloth get gray or blackish. Keep using it until it doesn’t shine your lovely pieces. I store my cloth in the bag it comes in as. Additionally, I use one section at a time to avoid touching all the surfaces of the treated cloth.
The end ;-)
The Jewelry Lady