Friday, July 27, 2012

Tired of Tarnish?

Most people do not enjoy the task of polishing their jewelry.....myself included!  So, I thought I'd share a couple of tips I've learned along the way, including some great new products that I've added to my store that will help prevent tarnish in the first place.

One of the most important things to consider is how you store your jewelry.  Most people love to have their jewelry out on display, hanging on a super cute jewelry "tree" on their dresser.  This is fine for your jewelry that has antiqued metal or for something that is mostly made up of beads, pearls or some other type of gemstone.  However, this will wreak havoc on your bright metal pieces, especially sterling silver.  Things like hairspray, perfume, humidity all contribute to the tarnishing of silver.....definitely eliminating the ledge in the bathroom as a viable jewelry storage space as well :-)  So what are you to do?

First, remove any tarnish that's built up on your pieces.  Then I recommend putting your silver, gold (it doesn't tarnish like silver but it can darken and become dull) and copper jewelry in a sealed bag or an enclosed jewelry box, along with an anti-tarnish strip like this...

These strips will protect gold, silver, copper and brass jewelry from tarnish and dulling for 6 months (or up to 2 years if in a sealed environment).  You can insert one strip in each drawer of your jewelry box or cut them into 1" squares and insert them along with your jewelry in small zip-close, plastic bags.  These strips are completely safe and non-toxic.  They don't emit anything but rather absorb the sulfurs and moisture in the air that cause tarnish.

Another option are these copper-colored anti-tarnish plastic bags...

They provide kind of an "all-in-one" solution as the bag zips closed to seal out the air and it's treated with a tarnish and corrosion inhibitor.  It's completely safe for all metals, even when in direct contact, and is non-toxic, environmentally-friendly, and fully recyclable—containing no charcoals, oils or volatile chemicals.  The cool thing about these bags is that they include a color indicator....when the copper color on the bag turns black it is time for a new bag.  I've been using these to store my sterling silver chains for my store for over a year now and haven't had to change to a new bag yet!  

Both of these products I use on a regular basis and I've noticed a HUGE decrease in the need to polish my jewelry.  But in the event a piece does start to tarnish, I take out my friendly Sunshine Polishing cloth....
...and gently buff the piece to remove the tarnish.  These cloths are pretreated with non-abrasive cleaning agents.  You can use these cloths until they are completely black on both sides and then discard. 

So, if you are tired of tarnish, hop over to my store and pick up some of these great products!

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