How To Remove Tarnish From Silver Plated Jewelry

Add a section on preventative maintenance

Preventative Maintenance:

Silver plated jewelry will eventually tarnish, no matter how well you take care of it. However, proper storage and cleaning can both help slow the process. When not wearing your jewelry, it is important to store it away from moisture and extreme temperatures in an airtight environment. You should also avoid prolonged contact with items that contain harsh chemicals such as hairspray, perfume and lotions. Cleaning your silver plated jewelry regularly with a polishing cloth or mild household cleaner will also help keep it looking beautiful for longer.

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1. Start by preparing a cleaning solution of baking soda and aluminum foil. Combine equal amounts of baking soda and warm water in bowl, stirring until it forms a paste-like consistency. Place aluminum foil at the bottom of the bowl, making sure that the shiny side is facing upwards (this will act as an electrolyte).

2. Next, submerge the jewelry into the solution and allow it to sit for 10 minutes.
Illustration: Jewellery submerged in paste mixture with aluminum foil at the bottom

3. After 10 minutes have passed, take a soft bristled toothbrush and begin to lightly scrub away any tarnish that is present on your jewelry item. Make sure to go gently using a small circular motion; scrubbing too hard could damage or scratch the silver plating on your jewelry item.
Illustration: Toothbrush lightly scrubbing away tarnish from silver plated jewellery

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4. Once all residue has been removed, rinse off your jewelry under lukewarm water for about 15 seconds; make sure to pat dry with a microfiber cloth afterwards.
Illustration: Jewellery being rinsed off under lukewarm water

5. Finally, store your silver-plated jewelry in an airtight container or plastic bag to help avoid further oxidation or tarnishing in the future!
Illustration: Opening an airtight container / plastic bag filled with silver plated jewellery

Expand the introduction

Removing tarnish from silver plated jewelry is an important part of proper care for most pieces. Tarnish accumulates when the silver is exposed to air that causes a chemical reaction which produces sulfur, making the silver look dirty and dull. There are many different methods for cleaning and restoring silver’s luster and shine, however each method has its own pros and cons. Popular options include: cleaning with commercial polishes, sulfide-forming solutions, DIY strategies like vinegar or baking soda, ultrasonic machines, steam cleaners and even tumblers for burnishing. When used properly with the necessary safety precautions in place, these methods can help you restore your silver-plated jewelry back to its original shine.

Add a section on additional reading

Additional reading:

1. “How to Care for Your Silver Plated Jewelry,” by American Gem Society
2. “Jeweler’s Tips For Properly Caring For Silver Plated Jewelry,” by The Online Jeweler
3. “Silver-Plated Jewelry Maintenance and Care Tips,” by Jewelry Making
4. “How To Clean & Care For Silver Plated Jewellery,” by Jewellery Maker
5. “Silverplating Basics, From Care to Repair and Beyond,” by eHow

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