When it comes to preserving your favorite jewelry pieces, knowing how to clean a silver necklace is undoubtedly worth its weight in gold. Your silver necklace goes with almost anything in your closet. The simplicity and elegance of silver jewelry make it the perfect companion piece to any ensemble, whether it is a t-shirt and jeans or a fancy dress.
Unfortunately, this also means your silver jewelry gets its fair share of mileage. With repeated use and exposure to numerous elements and conditions, your stunning statement accessory will become a tarnished silver necklace in no time. All hope is not lost.
These DIY homemade jewelry cleaners are simple to make and are excellent natural ways to polish silver pieces. You may be curious about how to clean a sterling silver chain or hesitant to ruin the gemstones set in your silver jewelry. These five cleaning methods give you the confidence you need to salvage even the most tarnished jewelry.
Ingenious Techniques to Clean Silver Jewelry
1. How to Clean a Silver Necklace Using Only Soap and Water
The simplest solution for how to clean a silver necklace requires no more than a generous cleaning. This mixture is the safest way to clean silver jewelry that contains gemstones or has softer silver properties, like plated silver jewelry or sterling silver.
Before you begin, make sure the tarnish on your silver jewelry isn’t intentional. Many silversmiths will purposely darken jewelry pieces to give it that antique, aged appeal.
Rinse silver with warm water to loosen flakes of debris and remove any dirt on the surface of the jewelry. Next, combine the dish soap with water and stir thoroughly.
When choosing a mild dish soap, ensure that the detergent does not contain phosphates, ammonia, or citrus oils. These elements can be harmful to the jewelry and cause brown stains to form in place of the tarnish.
Using a soft, clean cloth gently scrub the surface of your jewelry until the dark spots lighten. Rinse again with warm water and dry immediately afterward to prevent water stains.
2. Clean Silver Jewelry with Everyday Pantry Ingredients
Another simple technique to clean silver necklaces and other jewelry pieces is to clean silver with white vinegar. While white vinegar is a popular cleaning solution on its own, it is even more effective when adding other common ingredients into the mix.
Start by cleaning a silver necklace with household products like aluminum foil, baking soda, and white vinegar that are probably already in your pantry. This recipe uses numerous supplies that are frequently found in the home and offers maximum output to remove tarnish and get your jewelry sparkling again.
Boil a cup of water and cover your glass dish with aluminum foil, ensuring that the shiny side of the foil faces upward. Add the sea salt and baking soda to the dish, and gradually mix in the white vinegar to prevent an overflow of bubbles caused by combining the ingredients.
Add the boiling hot water to the baking bowl, then use a pair of tongs to place each piece of silver onto the foil. Rotate the silver pieces every 10 minutes until each side of the necklace has touched the foil. Rinse each piece of jewelry with warm water and dry when finished.
3. How to Polish Silver Necklace Using Toothpaste
The next method for cleaning silver jewelry at home works best on heartier silvers due to its abrasive nature. It is best not to use toothpaste on highly-polished silver or sterling silver jewelry. Instead, use white toothpaste and a soft toothbrush to achieve that sparkling shine on your satin or matte silver jewelry.
The first step is selecting the right toothpaste for the job. A white toothpaste devoid of artificial coloring, baking soda, or whitening agents, is best when removing tarnish from silver jewelry. These additives are more abrasive than the toothpaste itself and can leave tiny, but distinct scratches in your favorite jewelry pieces.
Wet the jewelry with a spray bottle or a damp cloth to make it easier to work the toothpaste. Dab a tiny dot of toothpaste on the necklace and lightly rub the jewelry to remove tarnish. For finely-braided silver chains or intricate silver pendants, an old toothbrush is a fantastic solution for scrubbing deep within small crevices.
4.How to Clean a Sterling Silver Chain Using Lemon Juice
A fresh-scented household cleaner, lemon juice knows no bounds when it comes to demolishing tough stains and sticky goo. A brilliant silver cleaning solution, lemon juice is simple to use and gentle on easily scratched metals like sterling silver.
Citric acid is a heavy-duty rust remover that reacts with metals to remove the tarnishing effects of oxidation. While other products may contain citric acid, lemon juice contains a high level that is perfect for cleaning silver.
Combine the mixture in a glass bowl to avoid a chemical reaction with other metals like stainless steel. Let your jewelry soak overnight in the solution. After the necklace has had a nice, long soak, dry the pieces using a microfiber cloth.
This not only buffs your silver jewelry into an impressive shine but also prevents scratching. Because the metal is sensitive, only use soft fabrics without lint and avoid abrasive materials like paper towels or tissues.
5. How to Polish Silver Necklace with Ketchup
An unusual ally in your fight against silver tarnish is a common condiment found in your pantry or refrigerator. Ketchup is a spectacular alternative to silver polish and returns the shine in those jewelry box favorites that have lost their luster.
The acetic acid in tomatoes is the same element present in natural cleaners like vinegar. This acid strips down oxidized layers and removes tarnish. To clean, fully submerge jewelry pieces in a glass bowl of ketchup.
Let your silver pieces sit in the ketchup for approximately ten minutes before taking them out and rinsing them. Buff them using a clean cloth free from lint. This method is also a great way to polish and clean antique silver.
Do you have stainless steel jewelry? To clean steel jewelry, you can put a dab of ketchup on a cleaning rag to rub on your silver or for tarnished stainless steel pieces. Rinse well and dry. No more tarnish and a spectacular shine!
How can I prevent my silver from tarnishing in the first place?
While cleaning your silver necklaces is a simple fix, there are also ways to prevent tarnish before it starts. Frequent contributors to the oxidation process of silver are moisture, humidity, and cosmetics. Cleaning your silver jewelry after each use is the best way to avoid a buildup of mildew and chemicals that cause the silver to tarnish.
Use a silver polishing cloth to clean and buff the silver pieces, especially after a hot, sweaty day in summer or a rainy spring afternoon. Equally, avoid using jewelry at the gym and keep it out of bathrooms when showering. This will prevent excess moisture from collecting on the necklace.
These cleaning solutions are an inexpensive way to polish silver and save you a trip to the jeweler. Whichever silver cleaner works best for you, remember to select the cleaner that is best for the type of silver in your jewelry. Silver plating can flake off when using grittier cleaners and will do more damage than good.
We hope you enjoyed these silver jewelry cleaning ideas. You know how important it is to preserve that extra special jewelry piece. Don’t forget to share these solutions for how to clean a silver necklace with your friends and family on Facebook and Pinterest!