How to Polish the Silver and Keep It Shining Brightly How to Polish the Silver and Keep It Shining Brightly

It’s time for a festive family or holiday dinner at your home. You’ve made your shopping list and checked it several times. The good linen tablecloth has been refreshed and is sitting in wait of table settings, the centerpiece, and the decorative finishing touches. The dinner is in the oven, the dessert is arriving with the guests, and the beverages are chilling in the fridge.

It’s time to open the chest of silver and to your complete dismay, you discover that the contents, your precious silver, are tarnished. Time is at a premium and so you must decide whether you will resort to the ordinary, every day silverware or run to the nearest department store to replenish your supply with glistening, shining silver that obviously doesn’t show any evidence of tarnish.

Of course, it would have been best if you had checked on the silver several days ago, but out of sight is out of mind. Additionally, it would have been ideal had you checked on the silver the night before. At least then, you could have stayed up half the night to polish and polish and polish. Hopefully, this is a lesson learned and learned well. Read on to discover some handy preventative tips as well as cleaning suggestions.

Preventative Measures to Avoid Tarnish

• Clean the silver frequently. The more time that you allow to pass in between cleanings, the more tedious the task will be. The more frequently you clean the silver, the easier the cleaning involved will be and the less time consuming it will be as well.
• Store the silver properly to minimize tarnishing. Silver items should be enclosed in a cabinet, cupboard, or chest that closes tightly to prevent air borne contaminants from reaching it. Do not store the silver with plastic or wool.
• Body oils and salts on your skin can lead to tarnishing. Therefore, when transferring your silver from one location to another, use a clean cloth to handle it.
• Use your silver frequently and this will minimize the tarnishing that occurs, if any.
• Avoid rubber gloves whenever handling silver. This tends to promote tarnish.
• Wear cloth gloves to handle the silver when cleaning or polishing it.

Removing the Tarnish from the Silver

• The first step is to give the silver a good bath in hot, soapy water to remove any dirt, grease, or dust.
• Dry the silver completely with a clean towel.
• Light tarnish is usually not too difficult to remove. Use a silver polishing mitt in an attempt to remove the tarnish.
• Purchase a commercial product that has been specially formulated to remove tarnish from silver. Use the instructions that are included with the product. Typically, you will find the instructions on the label of the container.
• If the product that you purchased is a liquid silver dip, use caution. Dipping a clean cloth into the solution and rubbing it onto the silver works better to clean decorative pieces that have intricately designed patterns that include small crevices, nooks, and crannies. Silver items with handles that are made from other materials might also benefit from this method rather than an immersion.

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