Handmade Jewelry for the Special Occasion

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Easy tips for cleaning your Sterling Silver Jewelry

A few days ago I was looking for a Sterling Silver Necklace that my brother gave me a few years ago. As I took it out of my jewelry box I noticed that some parts were dark and it wasn't looking that nice anymore. Lucky me, I know how to clean my jewelry so it only took me a few minutes and it was looking again as new. But I realized that not everyone know how to care for their jewelry, so here are a few tips for you :)

 Sterling Silver Chalice by Master68UK

First of all, it's important to know that Sterling Silver will always tarnish. It's just a natural effect that will happen for several reasons, like the the contact with your sweat, perfume, oil, food, detergents and humidity among others. That's why it's becoming every day more common to coat Sterling Silver with Rhodium to minimize this tarnishing. Also in order to prevent the fast tarnishing you can do the following:
- Avoid storing Sterling Silver in direct contact with wood, since it can contain coatings that damage your silver.
- Store your Jewelry in air tight Ziploc bags
- Add anti-tarnish strips to your jewelry boxes (you can buy those in many stores)
- When you are cooking or cleaning take off your jewelry to avoid contact with food and detergent. Ammonia will tarnish your jewelry instantly.

 Anti-Tarnish Paper by DiscountBeadStore

 The above tips are to prevent fast tarnishing, but what if your jewelry is already tarnished? Here are some tips to clean your items:
- Use Regular White Toothpaste. Rub your jewelry with the paste (not gel) and then rinse with warm water. Make sure to dry it with a cotton fabric. While this form and the next one are very easy and cheap, there are some people who say it's not recommended. So use it at your own risk and only if you have no time for the other options.
- Make a paste of Baking Soda and Water and rub it on your Sterling Silver. Then rinse with warm water and dry with cotton cloth.
- Buy commercial cleaning paste or solution. Normally you only need to submerge it for a few seconds, but make sure to read the instructions first.
- Take to a jewelry and have it professionally cleaned. I recommend this one for more expensive items, since they can also check that your gems or other stones are still secure.

  Wedding ring set by Thehilemandcollection

 Whichever form of cleaning you use from above, it is a good idea to polish your jewelry after it's clean. That will remove your fingerprints and  add more shine. Use a polishing cloth or  flannel to do that. Also remember that what might be safe for your Silver might not be safe for the stone or gem that is attached, so always check first before using the product. 

 Sterling Silver Amethyst and Garnet Necklace by CaduceusNeckware

Just a last reminder. Make sure your jewelry is Sterling Silver and not Plated since cleaning plated jewelry will be different and you can damage your pieces by using products for Sterling.

Hope this is helpful for everyone!


  1. thanks Sandra, Ive never heard of those anti tarnish tabs...do I find them at a bead store?

  2. Yes, at a bead store or online. There are a few Etsy sellers that have them. Click on the link below the picture with the tabs and you will get to the item on Etsy :)

  3. Thank you so much for both answers. Of course, its too simple for me to click on the link lol.

  4. Thanks for these tips, really helpful! Now the only thing stopping me from cleaning my jewelry is laziness :-/

  5. This is good info to have, I just received a sterling silver bracelet as a gift. Right now I keep it air-tight when not in use.

  6. Thank you for your tips. Your blog is so informative for jewelry lover. Thank you for sharing.



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