Tarnish is the easiest form of discoloration to prevent. There are several things you can do to help prevent tarnish. Anti-tarnish strips are available from jewelry supply companies (and other places) to pack near your items. Placing your silver jewelry in plastic bags is a good idea when you won’t be wearing it for a long period of time. There is also a plethora of Silver polish available at your local grocery store.
We all know about Silver polish, but few are aware that polishing actually scrubs some silver off the surface of your treasured piece! It can be especially detrimental for silver-plated pieces, especially
where the layer of silver may not be very thick. Another problem with using silver polish to clean jewelry is that it can be hard clean all nooks and crannies. Another way to prevent tarnish is to also remove it chemically. There are many different ‘recipes’ for tarnish removal on the Internet.
Here is one:
Place a piece of aluminum in the bottom of a dish large enough to hold the piece you want to remove tarnish. Heat enough water to cover the silver, then mix in 2 tablespoons of sodium carbonate per cup of water in the dish and pour the mixture into the dish. You need to be sure that the silver touches the aluminum. For those of you who don’t know, sodium carbonate is the active ingredient in washing soda. An accessible brand is Arm & Hammer found in the detergent aisle at the grocery store.
To err on the side of caution, you can always bring your silver pieces to us for cleaning and polishing. Having a jewelry professional take care of your prized possessions is always a good idea and also very cost effective!