Cleaning Tips for Copper, Sterling Silver, and Brass
Copper, Sterling Silver, and Brass are all metals that tarnish easily. Some people will find that their jewelry tarnishes more quickly than it does for other people. This is because of the acidity level of your skin. The following factors will cause your jewelry to tarnish:
- Air Contamenents
- Skin Contact
- Water/ Water Contamenents
The easiest way to keep your jewelry from tarnishing is to store it properly. Ziplock storage bags or other air tight containers are ideal for this. The less air contact there is with the jewelry the better off you are. Always make sure that you follow these recommendations when storing your jewelry for the best results:
- Don't store tarnished jewelry with non-tarnished jewelry
- Make sure your jewelry is clean & dry before storing it
- Make sure your storage container is dry before storing jewelry in it
- For the greatest results add a 3m anti-tarnish strip to your storage
3m Anti-Tarnish strips absorb the air contamenents which cause your jewelry to tarnish. They are very effective and last for 6-12 months depending on the size of the container they are in.
Copper is the easiest metal to remove tarnish from. The simplest way to clean copper is to pour enough white vinigar into a glass container to cover the piece, then add about a teaspoon of salt. Drop the piece into the solution and
swirl it around; the tarnish should be visibly reduced within about a minute, if it isn't add more salt. Do not allow it to sit in the solution for a long time or it can damage the piece.Remove from the solution, rinse, and dry thoroughly. This method works well for both Copper and Brass, though doesn't do much for Sterling Silver (though it does help a little).
Always make sure you rinse your jewelry and dry completely before storing or wearing.
Another method for cleaning jewelry is to use a Polishing Cloth. This
method of cleaning will produce a different look from cleaning with a
solution. Cleaning solutions remove the tarnish from all surfaces of the
piece. A polishing cloth with only clean the high points of the piece
giving the polished piece the look of antique jewelry. Additionally,
using a polishing cloth will give the piece more shine then simply removing tarnish, so this method can be used in conjunction with a cleaning solution to give your jewelry a real gleam. We recommend the Sunshine Polishing Cloths for this method of cleaning.
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