Sterling silver cannot be damaged by pure water. However, most of the water we are exposed to is not purified. Chemicals in the water can result in tarnished silver. Chemicals can also be found in household cleaners, cosmetics, perfumes, and hair care products. If tarnishing occurs the best way to clean your sterling silver piece is with a silver polishing cloth or polishing compound.
Gold Plating Care
With plated pieces, the gold comprises only a very thin outer layer. Gold plating tarnishes easily if it is subjected to any material that isn’t pH neutral.
So how do you protect your plated jewellery?
Here are just a few tips to protect your plated jewellery:
- Remove your jewellery before you swim in chlorine or salt water.
- Remove your jewellery before participating in activities that will cause you to sweat a lot.
- Wait to put on your jewellery until after you have applied lotion, makeup or perfume.
- Remove jewellery if you will be bringing it into contact with something hard. (For example, take off your ring before lifting weights.)
- Store your plated jewellery where it won’t rub against other hard substances (a soft bag—one per piece of jewelry—is ideal).
Gold plated jewellery will remain bright and shine for a longer period of time if you know how to clean and protect it from scratches or fading.