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An effective method for cleaning lackluster silver

Cleaning and polishing silver jewelry or tableware used to be a regular chore in households fortunate enough to own such items. It isn't difficult to clean and polish silver, especially if it is done regularly, but it is time-consuming, making it a very low priority in today's world. 
There is a well-known method of cleaning silver that utilizes chemistry to remove tarnish quickly. Very quickly. As in a matter of seconds.
Melissa Maker of Clean My Space demonstrates the technique in the video below, using aluminum foil, salt, baking soda, vinegar, and boiling water. The results are truly amazing.
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A note of caution: this method works too well, in many experts' opinion. Be aware that the process will, either immediately or over time, also remove protective polish and patina from your silver. The piece will be very clean but with no shine and no protective coating to delay the next round of tarnish. Other possible problems include microscopic etching that weakens the silver.
If you are concerned about harming precious stones in your silver jewelry or just want to clean and polish your silver the old-fashioned way, there are several methods that the Society of American Silversmiths recommends. Which method to choose depends upon the level of tarnish you are trying to remove, whether there are waxy or sticky spots on the silver, and what other materials are in your piece.
Whatever method you use, the end result is a joy to behold. There's nothing quite like the gleam of silver, whether against the skin or under a candlelit table surrounded by loved ones.
Do you know someone planning to serve a big holiday meal with polished silver tableware? Make sure to share this article with them now!
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