How to Clean Silver Bangles

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How to Clean Silver Bangles

Jewellery wearers are attracted to silver pieces because of the metal's shine and lustre. In particular, silver bangles are a desirable item that can be matched with any outfit for all occasions. All silver will eventually tarnish, making it look dull and dingy. Silver bangles require special attention due to intricate designs and increased exposure due to wrist wear. It is important to know why silver tarnishes, how to prevent tarnish and specifically how to clean silver bangles, to ensure they remain beautiful for years to come.

 

Why Do Silver Bangles Tarnish

Silver begins to tarnish the moment it is exposed to the air. Several sulphur containing compounds circulate in the atmosphere. The sulphur is attracted to silver and can bind to jewellery creating silver sulphide, the black substance coating silver jewellery. This is the process that causes silver to become dull, however, bangles can become dirty and dingy when left on during household chores or other activities. Cleaning silver bangles regularly will safeguard they their beauty.

 

How to Clean Silver Bangles

As the saying goes "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure", this is also true for silver jewellery. Properly storing silver bangles in airtight containers and reducing their exposure to light when not being worn will help reduce the amount of tarnish build up. In addition, it is important to remove silver bangles before exposing wrist to water, harsh chemicals such as chlorine and abrasives. If silver jewellery does become wet it can be dried with a soft felt type cloth. Even when silver bangles are properly stored they will still need to be cleaned occasionally. There are a variety of methods for cleaning silver.

Commercial Products to Clean Silver Bangles

Jewellers can be a good source for finding reliable silver cleaning products. Silver jewellery retailers, such as Tiffany & Co. and Pandora, have created their own line of cleaners specifically for use with their designs.

 

Product

Advantages

Disadvantages

Dip

Easy to use

Cleans quickly

Contain harsh chemicals like ammonia or alcohol

Cream/paste

High Shine

Reaches all nooks and crannies

Difficult to rinse

Contains abrasives

Polishing cloth

Easy to use

Gentle on metals

Removes Tarnish

No mess

Does not remove heavy grime

Hard to clean intricate design

 

Products available include liquid dips for soaking, creams/pastes for scrubbing and special cloths for polishing. Other commercial cleaners are available from manufacturers. They sell many different types of polish including dips and creams for jewellery. If a silver wearer enjoys Do-It-Yourself projects there are several "home remedies" available for cleaning silver bangles.

Home Remedies to Clean Silver Bangles

Most jewellers recommend warm soapy water and a light scrubbing with a wash rag to remove everyday grime and body oils. Drying thoroughly with a soft towel will prevent some tarnish build up before wearing again. If tap water contains high levels of chlorine, this same technique can be used with distilled water.

Finally, a chemical reaction can be employed to reverse the sulphur bonding that has created tarnish. This technique exploits sulphurs attraction to aluminium and can be accomplished with items found in most kitchens.

  1. Find a pan/pot large enough to completely immerse the silver bangle. More than one bangle can be cleaned at a time.
  2. Cover the bottom of the pan with aluminium foil.
  3. Place the silver bangle on top of the foil. The silver and aluminium must be touching
  4. Stir 227 g of baking soda into 3.8 litres of boiling water in a separate pan. Smaller portions can be used such as 113.5 g baking soda and .12 litres water. Place the pan in a sink before mixing in case it bubbles over
  5. Once the water and baking soda are combined, pour it over the silver bangle in the second pan. Tarnish will fade after several minutes. Silver bangles can be treated several times to remove excessive build up.
  6. Rinse silver bangle in non-chlorinated water. Dry completely with a soft cloth.

The tarnish will transfer to the aluminium foil or yellow sulphur flakes will build up on the bottom of the pan. This option works for silver bangles because it reduces tarnish over the entire piece without the risks associated with using corrosives. Remember, dirt and grime can be removed simply with warm soapy water, and silver jewellery should always be stored completely dry.

 

How to Buy Products to Clean Silver Bangles on eBay

You can find commercial products on eBay if you do not have time for the DIY option. Simply type "silver cleaner" into the search bar on any eBay page and narrow options by choosing a cleaner medium such as a dip, paste, or polishing crème. You can also find cleaning bundles that include a brush and polishing cloth.

Many eBay sellers offer inexpensive shipping and guarantee their products cleaning ability. Purchasing silver jewellery cleaners on eBay will ensure you do not have to resort to drastic measures to keep your silver bangles shining.

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