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Wearing Sterling Silver
When performing manual tasks, remove your jewelry to prevent physical damage or exposure to chemicals or cleaning fluids. Some tasks that should be avoided when wearing jewelry include kitchen work, gardening, cleaning the house and other common tasks.
Cosmetics, hairspray, perfumes and lotion can contain chemicals that can often damage jewelry. Putting jewelry on after applying these materials will limit exposure to jewelry and any potential damage.Chlorinated water can react with the metals found in jewelry causing color changes and even structural damage. As a result, it's a good idea to remove jewelry before entering the pool or spa.
You can avoid tarnish by wearing your jewelry often. The oils in your skin will“clean”the silver and keep it looking shiny.
Cleaning Sterling Silver
Clean your sterling silver jewelry with a soft 100% cotton (nub free) cloth or flannel cloth and gently rub off any excess makeup. Remember, silver is a very soft metal and you can scratch it if you aren't careful so don't rub it too briskly.
Never use anything but a clean 100% cotton or a special sterling silver cleaning cloth (a popular choice is Sunshine Polishing Cloth) or very soft bristle brush, like a baby’s tooth brush or a horsehair silver brush.
Paper, polyester, and coarse fabrics often contain wood fibers or synthetics that can cause tiny scratches in the surface of your fine sterling silver jewelry. Dirt left over from previous cleanings can scratch the surface as well.
We recommend that you don't use silver dips for removing oxidation from your silver jewelry as it will leave microscopic pits causing it to darken faster. Instead, focus on preventative care by storing your jewelry in a closed box or plastic baggy as silver will tarnish when exposed to air.
NEVER store unwrapped silver in plastic bags or wrap and make sure that rubber bands do not come in contact with the silver. Since these are petroleum based products, they break down over time and stain the silver. In fact, rubber bands can leave black imprints almost immediately!
Store sterling silver in an airtight silver chest or protective bags made of tarnish-proof cloth made especially for this purpose.
Avoid wrapping sterling silver in plastic, aluminum foil, or newspaper, or binding flatware with rubber bands, all of which can result in damage.
Choose a dark, dry storage place for your sterling silver to help prevent tarnishing. Exposure to air and light promotes tarnishing, so keep your sterling silver away from dampness and direct sunlight. Even a light bulb that shines directly on sterling silver will accelerate tarnishing.
To prevent scratching, do not store sterling silver loose in drawers, or in a drawer that is opened frequently.
Store your sterling silver separately from stainless to help prevent scratching.
Avoid storing silverware directly on wood surfaces (especially oak), as wood often contains acids that can mar your sterling silver's finish.