Silver jewelry and accessories are very popular. The color silver is neutral and suits most colors whatever you wear. And they look very nice especially when clean and shiny. However, there’s one common concern for silver jewelry, that is, that they tend to tarnish after a long time. Now this is good news if you’re particularly fond of antique jewelry.
But of course, not all people like the shade of patina on an aging silver jewelry.
Here are some tips how to take care of your silver valuables to keep them from getting tarnished or at least delay the occurrence thereof.
1. Wear them more often instead of locking them away in compact jewelry boxes. The silver’s constant contact with the skin’s oil helps coat the jewelry, which can slow down tarnishing.
Tarnishing occurs as a normal chemical reaction of silver metal with sulfur, which can easily be found in the air and other common household products.
2. Avoid getting your silver jewelry sprayed over or get in contact with some personal grooming products like lotion and perfume. Some ingredients and chemicals in cosmetic and hair products are contributing factors too that accelerate tarnishing.
It’s a good practice to wear your silver jewelry last, after you’ve dressed up, put on makeup, done your hair, applied perfume, etc. Make it also a habit to take it off first when you get home so as to keep it safe.
3. Keep them in air-tight containers instead of ordinary jewelry boxes, especially if you’d rather not wear them, and would like to keep them tucked away for a long time. This way you are obviously keeping out air that speeds up tarnishing.
This ingenious way is not necessarily expensive. There are little zip lock bags where you can put your silvers instead, make sure they’re airtight. This is most practical in areas where there are more concentrations of sulfur.
In addition to that, you can find anti-tarnishing strips that are designed to absorb sulfur in the air. You can put it inside your air tight bags to further slow down tarnishing. Change it once every 6 months or so.
Here are some tips for cleaning tarnished silvers:
First of all, find a good silver cleaner. You can buy this in most jewelry stores.
Consistency may vary among brands; some maybe concentrated while others are more aqueous. Look for a silver cleaner that is gentle, not only on the silver metal, but on gemstones as well.
Note that some cleaners are strong enough to damage the gemstones embedded in the jewelry. Avoid using them on silvers with any coating finish especially on antique or oxidized silvers.
Dip type silver cleaners works best for untreated silver jewelry but you should still follow directions.
When using them, it is very important to read and follow instructions carefully. Give your silvers a quick deep and rinse it thoroughly with clean water. Don’t leave it for more than 10 seconds. It may clean the silver metal but it can ruin the gems attached to it.