No need to take the good stuff to the jewelers and pay for cleanings.
So much jewelry worn daily is of the costume variety — inexpensive semi-precious stones and silver- and gold-plated metals. Cleaning real jewelry is something of a lost art.
No need to take the good stuff to the jewelers and pay for cleanings. Good Housekeeping in May offered some DIY tricks to bring silver, gold and pearls back from a dullish state.
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1. For silver that is “filmy” or beginning to discolor, mix a few drops of a mild dish soap with warm water. Dip in a cloth, rub onto the silver jewelry, rinse the jewelry with cool water, and finish the process by buffing the jewelry with a dry cloth. More heavily tarnished silver can be revived by mixing three parts baking soda with one part water; wet silver, apply mixture with a lint-free cloth, rub onto the silver, rinse and buff dry. To clean and prevent tarnish, invest around $10 for a silver polish.
2. A few drops of mild dish soap mixed with sodium-free seltzer water or club soda is an adequate solution for shining gold. Allow to soak for about five minutes, swirl pieces around in the mixture, and use a soft toothbrush to clean crevices. Rinse with water and dry with a soft cloth.
3. Real, cultured and even faux pearls are helped with a makeup brush and some shampoo. Place the pearls on a soft cloth, dip the brush into a mixture of warm water and small amount of shampoo, and brush over each pearl. Wipe the pearls with a clean, well-wrung damp cloth. Lay the strand flat on a cloth to dry.
The publication also advises degunking some costume jewelry by dabbing a cloth into a solution of dish detergent and water and wiping gently. Dab again with a cloth dampened in clean water. Pat dry and lay on a dry towel to allow to air-dry completely.
Better Homes & Gardens in May also suggested pouring boiling water over silver, gold, platinum and diamonds and letting sit for a few moments until cool. Wipe dry.