Silver Education: Taking Care of Your Silver Jewelry has all the information you need to know how to care for your silver jewelry. From wearing with care to cleaning and protecting the precious metal, here is everything you need to know to keep your silver shining.

Silver jewelry is an affordable and fashionable way to add sparkle to your jewelry box, so it’s important to make that silver shine last a lifetime. Most silver jewelry is actually pure silver alloyed with copper – or Sterling Silver – which is a much stronger metal but can tarnish if not cared for properly.


Try to to keep your sterling silver jewelry in a cool, dry place in tarnish prevention cloths or bags. The treated cloth slows down the tarnishing process and keeps the jewelry from rubbing against harder pieces that can scratch it.

Avoid exposing your silver jewelry to household chemicals when cleaning with bleach or ammonia, or when swimming in chlorinated water to avoid damage. So be sure take off those jewels before you take the plunge!

Sterling silver jewelry that is worn continually often develops a unique patina – or a kind of glow combined with darkened areas. If you like the look, more power to you, but if you prefer your silver jewels bright and shiny, you should clean them with a phosphate-free detergent, such as 3M Tarni-Shield Silver Polish.

Some people use toothpaste to clean their sterling silver pieces (think of grandma and her prized silverware), but most silver experts today caution against it because they feel it’s too abrasive and leaves dulling scratches.

Finally, be on the lookout for normal wear-and-tear to your silver jewelry pieces. Often jewelry ‘hardware’ like claps, prongs, chain links and earring posts can become damaged over time.

And if you need a silver jewelry ‘doctor’, your local jeweler is the best place to go for immediate repair work that will bring your silver beauties back to their original top form.

The key is to enjoy your jewelry. Caring for it will only make wearing it a more glittering experience.

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