Over time even the most expensive pieces of jewellery will begin to tarnish and discolour. I’m going to share some simple tips to help care for and prolong the life of your jewellery pieces, whether they are super expensive or not.
A lot of metals can tarnish, some more quickly than others. Tarnish is a natural process which happens when metals have a chemical reaction with a non metal compound. This can cause certain types of jewellery to discolour, think silver plated, sterling silver, copper, bronze and gold plated items when the plated layer starts to wear away.
Things that can accelerate this are exposure to moisture, chemicals and being in direct sunlight for prolonged periods of time.
Here are my personal top 5 jewellery care tips:
1. Do not wear your jewellery whilst swimming, bathing or showering. The chemicals in swimming pools can be especially harsh on some metals and make them appear duller and less shiny quite quickly. Regularly getting your jewellery wet can also cause tarnish to happen so should be avoided where possible.
2. Put your jewellery on last. The chemicals, oils and general moisture in everyday products such as perfume, moisturisers, hairspray etc. can also cause the tarnishing process to accelerate. Putting on your jewellery once you have finished getting ready for the day and letting these products dry can help slow down tarnish caused in this way.
3. Store your jewellery in airtight storage containers. Jewellery left out in the open for a long period of time can tarnish from moisture naturally in the air. Also make sure any jewellery being stored in anyway is clean and dry before being put away. You can also purchase anti-tarnish tabs to use in your jewellery storage. These are small, square tabs of paper that are designed to absorb pollutants.
4. Invest in a silver polishing cloth. They can be quite cheap to pick up and are usually made from cotton/flannel, soft fabric blends treated with polishing compounds so you can rub your silver pieces to lift the tarnish and polish to a nice shine again.
5. And the last one will sound a bit silly but, wear your jewellery. The more frequently you wear or even check your jewellery items the sooner you will notice a tarnish or dirt build up happening. The sooner you get it cleaned the easier it will be. Plus who doesn’t like a good reason to rummage through their collection and wear something shiny every now and then!
You can buy the polishing clothes and anti-tarnish tabs mentioned above from a lot of places but here are two links to give you an idea of what you’re looking for.
If you need any more tips to care for your jewellery please feel free to get in touch with any of the contact methods available on the Contact Us page.
Thank you for reading!