Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The Bi-carb experiment: removing tarnish from your jewellery

Tarnished pieces before(top left)
Earrings after (top right)
Place pieces in bowl (bottom left),
 Add hot water then a little bicarb (middle)
and wait for bubbles to disperse (bottom left) 

I rotate my stock quite often not only to change the pieces but quite often to give them a good clean. Silver tarnishes from environmental reasons and can vary from place to place and person to person. It is caused by silver having a chemical reaction to Hydrogen Sulphide. This can be in hand cream or perfume, the acidity of your perspiration, and the level of hydrogen sulphide in the air, so car fume’s or what you touch like eggs, onions and even humidity. All accelerate the tarnish, which shows up as patches of yellow/brown and even black.

So for those who would like a simple solution here is an old wives remedy that works. I tried it on some of my earrings. Even before adding the bi -carb i could see a huge difference. It’s easy to do and will save you a lot of time and money later down the track.

1.       Place aluminium foil in “Pyrex “dish.

2.       Place jewellery in bowl.

3.       Pour boiling water from kettle on top (2cm above pieces).

4.       Add a small sprinkling of B-Carb (it will foam up and bubble).

5.       Leave till bubbles disperse and stop.

6.       Take out pieces and wash in soapy warm water, dry well and wear

One other saying that may help to prolong the tarnishing process:
 “Your jewellery should be the last thing you put on before you leave and the first thing you take of at night.”

This limits the contact and exposure to the above mentioned probable causes.  

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