What is the best homemade way to polish your sterling silver jewelry?
There are several homemade ways to take car of your sterling silver, precious metal jewelry. Of course, you can always use a polishing cloth. Polishing cloths are effective, and they are what I use to polish all my pieces before I have a show.
But what if you don’t have one of these chemically soaked cloths to do the job? Or maybe you’d rather not be exposed to the chemical cleanser.
Believe it or not, you have what it takes right now in your cupboard!
It’s everyday baking soda. All you have to do is make a thick past with baking soda and a little water, rub it into your fine sterling jewelry and right before your eyes the black tarnish will turn the baking soda black. Rinse your jewelry with water, allow it to dry and polish with a soft cloth. Voila!
I have also heard, (but not personally experienced) using old fashioned toothpaste. But DO NOT use the kind with tooth whiteners in it. According to some of my customers, toothpaste can do the same job as baking soda!
I urge you not to use chemical dips. Why? I have heard that if your jewelry is antiqued to bring out the detail in the design (as most of my designs are) that the chemical dip can take out all of the detail. And that would be a darned shame!
Oh, there is one other method that works well. It involves rolling up aluminum foil into little balls, adding a tablespoon of baking soda to about 4 or 5 cups of boiling water. Add your sterling silver jewelry, let it sit for a little while and you’ll see the tarnish lift off. I’ve seen other versions of this online, so you can experiment a little with what works best for you.
Why does Sterling Silver Jewelry tarnish?
It has to do with sulfur in the air. It causes a chemical reaction with sterling silver, turning it dark over time. Interestingly enough, I have a few customers that prefer the patina that forms on their sterling silver jewelry. To each her own!