Care and Cleaning Jewelry
To keep your jewelry looking new, care must be taken while wearing it. Do not use your jewelry while doing hard labor, this will scratch or dent the finish on your fine jewelry and might even cause the lost of a gem.
Keep your jewelry away from hand soaps, hand lotions, this will leave a film on your jewelry/gems that will cause it to loose it's luster/shine.
As a rule after you get dressed your jewelry is the last item you put on.
Cleaning Jewelry can be done by using a soft hair artist paint brush and a gentle soap. I use gentle hand dishwashing liquid, it is gentle to the hands and gets rid of grease and film. Work up a lather with a drop of the hand dishwashing soap with water on the brush, then gently clean the jewelry inside and out using a rounding motion with the soft hair artist paint brush. Rinse the jewelry over clean tap water for a while to get rid of the soap. Take a fluffy clean towel and pat dry.
Keep Silver Jewelry away from detergents and Clorox. Silver will turn black in color if it is exposed to Clorox (a chemical action). If your silver is exposed to detergents/Clorox and turns black in color, it can be cleaned again with a little work.
First warm up a cup of water in a glass bowel (110 F) with one big spoon of salt, place aluminum paper in the bottom of the of the bowel. Then place your silver jewelry in the warm salted water on top of the aluminum paper on the bottom of the glass bowel, make sure the warm salted water covers the jewelry completely. Let it sit for a 15 minutes, the silver should clear up. For stubborn stains, take the warm salt water and use aluminum paper to scrub the stubborn stains off. Then a Jeweler's polishing cloth can be used to polish it up.
I have even used this method for large silverware collections by increasing the amount of warm water with salt with a bigger glass bowel and it works great. Cuts polishing time by 80%.
A simple explanation of why this works.
The highly salted warm water creates a electron bridge in-between the aluminum paper/metal to the silver metal. This (electron bridge/charge) causes the silver metal to repel the black stains from the silver metal.
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