Keep shining - How to clean sterling silver jewellery

Keep shining - How to clean sterling silver jewellery
Leela Harrison

There's nothing quite like the sparkle of sterling silver jewellery against your skin. It's a perfect finishing touch to your outfit.

However, your favourite silver jewellery can lose its lustre over time. The good news is that bringing back the shine is easier than you might think. 

We explain the best way to clean sterling silver jewellery, ensuring your most-loved pieces continue to shine on for years to come.

What actually is sterling silver?

Before delving into the cleaning process, it helps to understand the composition of sterling silver. Sterling silver is an alloy made of 92.5% pure silver and 7.5% other metals, usually copper. This combination gives the metal strength and durability but also means it can start to tarnish when exposed to air and moisture. At Toolally we only use recycled 925 sterling silver for all of our silver jewellery. 

Here's what you need

  • Silver Polishing Cloth: A silver polishing cloth is usually the only tool you need for maintaining the shine of your jewellery. Here at Toolally, we include a polishing cloth with all of our sterling silver orders. These cloths are specially designed to remove tarnish without any scratching. 
  • Gentle Cleansing Solution: For jewellery with more extreme tarnishing, create a gentle cleaning solution. Mix a few drops of mild soap or baby shampoo with warm water. Avoid using harsh chemicals, as they can damage the silver and any stones or pearls in the jewellery.

    4 simple steps

    1. Preparation: Begin by laying out a soft surface, such as a towel or cloth, to protect your jewellery during the cleaning process. 
    2. Soaking: If your silver jewellery only needs a light cleaning you may not need this stage and just jump straight to the next step. If there is a lot of tarnishing, soak it in the mild soapy water for a few minutes. This will help loosen dirt and grime.
    3. Brushing and Wiping: Use a cloth to gently scrub intricate areas, and then wipe the entire piece. Pay attention to corners and hidden spots which could be problem areas. A tiny jewellery brush could also come in handy for this stage if there are intricate areas you cannot reach with a cloth. 
    4. Polishing: Once the jewellery is clean and dry, use a silver polishing cloth to buff the surface and restore its natural shine.

    Maintenance Tips

    Regular Cleaning: Make cleaning your sterling silver jewellery a part of your routine. Regular maintenance helps prevent tarnish build-up.

    Storage: Store your silver jewellery in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight and humidity. A jewellery box or jewellery pouch is perfect to keep your silver from tarnishing. 

    Avoid Harsh Chemicals: Remove your jewellery before engaging in activities that involve harsh chemicals, such as swimming in chlorinated pools or using cleaning products.

    Cleaning sterling silver jewellery is a simple yet important task in preserving its beauty. So, be sure to take good care of it and let your silver jewellery shine brightly for years to come. 

    See our sterling silver jewellery collection

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