Sterling silver, like other precious metals, can oxidize with time. But properly maintained silver jewellery improves with age. Treat your silver well, care for it properly and it will reward you with a long life and a lustrous look.
Store your silver in a cool, dry place, preferably in a tarnish-preventive bag or wrapped in a soft piece of felt or 100% cotton cloth. Store pieces individually so that they don’t knock together and scratch. Do not rub silver with anything other than a polishing cloth or a fine piece of felt. Your jeweler should be able to provide these. Tissue paper or paper towels can cause scratches because of the fibers in these products. Make sure your silver is not exposed to air and light during storage. This can cause silver to tarnish. And don’t wear sterling silver in chlorinated water or when working with household chemicals.
Clean your sterling silver jewelry with a soft 100% cotton cloth or flannel cloth and gently rub off any excess makeup. Remember silver is a very soft metal and you can scratch it if you aren’t careful so don’t rub it too briskly. Never use anything but a clean 100% cotton or a special sterling silver cleaning cloth or very soft bristle brush, like a babies tooth brush or a horsehair silver brush. Paper, polyester, and coarse fabrics often contain wood fibers or synthetics that can cause tiny scratches in the surface of your fine sterling silver jewellery. Dirt left over from previous cleanings can scratch the surface as well. For more stubborn dirt, use jewellery cleaner designed for silver use. Ask your jeweler to recommend an appropriate brand. Some cleaning agents and polishes can contain hard chemicals and should be avoided on rhodium electroplated plated 925 Sterling silver as they may ruin rhodium finish.
A deliberate oxidized finish is the blackening of crevices in the design of a silver object to make its features stand out. Take care as this finish can be removed by over cleaning and polishing.
Jewelry needs to be kept in a dry location with low humidity. Humid and damp conditions will cause tarnish in silver and problems with other precious metals. Also consider the security and accessibility of the location you choose.
If you are not wearing your jewellery please store it in the box or jewellery bag that was supplied with purchase. The more you wear a piece the better it will wear, however if you are not wearing your pieces for a long period of time you may consider placing a small packet of demoisturizing crystals into the box or bag.