How to clean oxidised jewellery

Tarnished jewelry can be a real downer, especially when a once-loved piece loses its luster. But fear not, fellow jewelry lovers! Oxidation, the natural process that causes metal to darken and dull, can often be reversed with a little TLC at home.

Here's a guide to help you to clean and restore your oxidised jewellery to its former glory:

Gather your supplies to clean jewellery:

  • Bowl: Choose a non-abrasive bowl, preferably made of glass or plastic.
  • Warm water: Not too hot, as this can damage some materials.
  • Mild dish soap: Opt for a gentle, phosphate-free formula.
  • Soft-bristled toothbrush: This will help reach intricate details without scratching.
  • Microfiber cloth: Gentle and absorbent for drying and polishing.
  • Optional: Baking soda, white vinegar, or lemon juice (for tougher tarnish).

Choose your cleaning method:

  • Mild soap and water: This gentle method is suitable in cleaning most types of oxidised jewellery, including silver, costume jewelry, and pearls. Mix a few drops of dish soap in warm water, soak your jewelry for 5-10 minutes, and gently brush with the toothbrush. Rinse thoroughly and dry with a microfiber cloth.
  • Baking soda and water: For slightly tarnished silver, create a paste using baking soda and a little water. Apply the paste with a damp cloth, rub gently, and rinse thoroughly. Dry with a microfiber cloth.
  • Baking soda, aluminum foil, and hot water (caution required): This method is more potent and should be used with caution, especially on delicate jewelry or gemstones. Line a bowl with aluminum foil, shiny side up. Place your jewelry on the foil and sprinkle with baking soda. Pour hot water to cover the jewelry and let it sit for 5-10 minutes. Rinse thoroughly and dry with a microfiber cloth. Important note: This method can react with certain metals, so test on a small inconspicuous area first.

Additional tips:

  • Always test cleaning methods on a hidden area of the jewelry first.
  • For heavily tarnished or delicate pieces, consult a professional jeweler.
  • Store your jewelry properly in airtight containers to minimize future oxidation.

By following these simple steps, you can breathe new life into your beloved jewelry and keep it sparkling for years to come. Remember, a little care and attention can go a long way in preserving your treasured pieces.

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