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How To Clean Sterling Silver Jewelry

One of the most common questions our customers ask is, “What is the best way to clean my jewelry?” Thankfully, sterling silver is easy to care for if you follow a few simple steps. This guide will help you keep your sterling silver jewelry tarnish free and sparkling!
Preventative Care
Keeping your jewelry from looking dingy is easily avoidable. Follow these preventative steps:
  • Remove jewelry before you wash your hands or immerse them in water. Water may assist the metal ions in absorbing into your skin, causing skin discoloration. Swimming, bathing, washing your hands and doing dishes can all cause the your jewelry to tarnish and get dirty. Removing your rings before washing, and drying your hands thoroughly after coming into contact with water will prevent this from happening.
  • Avoid wearing jewelry while cleaning, gardening, and other activities that can quickly destroy the metal’s finish.  Even talc, which is found in many cosmetics, is known to have an abrasive effect on sterling silver jewelry items.
Simple Cleaning
The easiest way to keep your sterling silver jewelry looking new is to clean it with a soft, clean, dry cloth (any dust or dirt on the cloth may scratch the piece). To keep your sterling silver sparkly:
  • Use our Jewelry Polishing Cloth to gently, quickly and efficiently clean your favorite sterling silver jewelry.
  • Clean your sterling silver jewelry with a soft 100% cotton or flannel cloth and gently rub off any excess dirt or buildup.  Remember, sterling silver is a very soft metal and you can scratch it if you aren’t careful so don’t rub it too briskly.
  • Never use anything but a clean cotton or a special sterling silver cleaning cloth.  Paper, polyester, and coarse fabrics often contain wood fibers or synthetics, that can cause tiny scratches in the surface of your sterling silver jewelry.
Jewelry Cleaner
While there are many items on the market, as well as “at home remedies” out there, we recommend you take care when cleaning your Emitations jewelry.
  • Clean your Emitations jewelry using our Brilliant Jewelry Cleaner. This sterling silver cleaner is specifically designed for use on our products, and was even recommended by the Jewelry Information Center and used in Academy Award gift bags!
  • Sterling silver cleaners are typically created to clean very specific products, so make sure you carefully read the instructions prior to use. Only use products specifically recommended forsterling silver when cleaning your Emitations jewelry.
  • DO NOT use toothpaste, dishsoap or baking soda. These contain harsh chemicals that may breakdown the sterling silver’s finish.
  • Storage

Besides regular cleaning, there are other strategies to extend the life of your sterling silver jewelry.  Proper storage is essential to reduce tarnishing. Sterling silver, stored properly, can be worn often and with minimal cleaning required, making it very easy to care for and lots of fun to wear. Use these storage strategies:
  • Keep your sterling silver jewelry in an air-tight protective bag made of tarnish proof cloth or you can use a plastic zip lock bag made of Mylar (turkey cooking bags) or polyethylene.  Be warned that some plastic contains sulfur compounds which can cause your jewelry to tarnish faster or stain.  Never use polyvinyl plastic bags.
  • Avoid storing your sterling silver jewelry directly on wood surfaces, because wood usually contains acids that can mar the finish.  Oak seems to be the worst for this.
  • Avoid storing your sterling silver with other metals, like pennies, and rubber, these too cause tarnish and damage.
Never again will you have to wonder how to keep your sterling silver jewelry looking new and beautiful!  Use these tips to keep your sterling silver jewelry tarnish free and sparkling!

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