Keep Your Jewelry Looking It’s Best
Sterling Silver and Gold are both precious metals. They can easily be scratched and dulled by chemicals. Gemstones, can also be dulled and damaged by chemicals especially the softer gemstones such as pearls, turquoise or opals. To keep your jewelry in great shape, take your jewelry off before:
- Cleaning the house – Contact with the chemicals in cleaning products can damage your jewelry.
- A dip in the hot tub or jacuzzi – Avoid wearing your jewelry in rapid temperature changes like a sauna or steam room.
- Jumping into the Pool – chlorine and bleach accelerate tarnishing.
- Participating in physical activities or sports.
Cleaning Mirror Polished Sterling Silver and Gold
Sterling Silver will require cleaning from time to time. Gold will not tarnish, but can lose it’s original shine and become dull. Use a jeweler’s cloth to remove light tarnish and dullness. Heavier tarnish, body oils and grime can be removed with a mild dish washing soap (Dawn) or Windex and a soft toothbrush. Rinse thoroughly in warm water and pat dry. (Hard bristles will scratch the metal and softer stones) Rinse well and pat dry with a soft towel.
A jeweler’s cloth is impregnated with chemicals that will gently remove tarnish from the silver.
Many commercial silver cleaning products can be too harsh for your stones. DO NOT USE silver cleaners that require you to soak the piece in it. Instead, dip a cotton swab into the cleaner and apply to your piece avoiding the stones. Note: I have found through the years that many commercial cleaners actually accelerate tarnishing.
Cleaning Oxidized Sterling Silver
When the Sterling silver has a dark black patina applied, it should be cleaned carefully with mild dish washing soap (Dawn) and water and a soft toothbrush if necessary. Let it dry completely before storing it in your zip-lock bag to prevent scratching.
Storing Your Jewelry
Store your piece in a clear zip-lock bag with an anti-tarnish strip – this will keep the piece from scratching and tarnishing as quickly.