How to Care for your Sterling Silver.
Most metal jewellery naturally reacts with air and tarnishes. You can either buy a jewellery-cleaning cloth, or follow the directions below a great homemade tried and tested jewellery cleaner. This is the method I have used to clean my own tarnished jewellery and they always come up sparkling.
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon baking soda
1 tablespoon dish detergent (optional - I have used without)
1 cup hot water
1 piece aluminium foil
1. Cut a piece of aluminium foil that roughly covers the bottom of a small bowl (like a cereal bowl).
2. Pour hot water into bowl. Place salt, soda, and dishwashing liquid into bowl. Place jewellery on top of foil and let it sit for 5 to 10 minutes. Rinse jewellery in cool water and dry jewellery completely with soft cloth. Discard solution after use and make a new batch next time.
3. According to wire-sculpture.com, "this works well for gold-filled, brass, German (nickel) silver and sterling silver. I have even cleaned jewellery with freshwater pearls, shell cameos and mother of pearl with no problem".
Taking Care of Pearls
Here are some tips on how to care for pearls. Pearls are soft gems that require special care. The organic nacre that envelopes a pearl is sensitive to its environment and can easily be scratched. Following these simple tips will help keep them beautiful for a lifetime.
* Last On, First Off - Apply makeup, perfume, lotions and hand creams before putting on your pearl jewellery. After wearing, remove your pearls first and gently wipe them with a soft cloth. Store your pearls separately from other jewellery to avoid scratching.
* Avoid Acids and Corrosive Substances - Your pearls should never be exposed to solutions that contain ammonia, harsh detergents, household cleaning products, or perfumes. They should be removed before showering or swimming in a pool.
* Wear Your Pearls Often - If left in a dry place such as a safe for extended periods of time, pearls may crack or fade. Pearls are naturally hydrated when they come into contact with your skin, therefore wear your pearls often.