Silver jewelry is timeless. People love it because it goes with virtually anything, is a cheaper alternative to other metals like gold, and is extremely durable, allowing it to last for a long time. However, if silver jewelry is not properly cared for, it can easily become dull or worse yet – tarnished. Here are some tips on how to keep your silver jewelry looking good as new for many years to come.

Be careful where you wear it. Avoid wearing jewelry when coming in contact with chemicals such as ammonia, alcohol, bleach, chlorine, or acetone. These chemicals can damage the silver and cause it to tarnish. You'll also want to take silver jewelry off before bathing, or applying cosmetics or lotions. Soap, lotions, and other cosmetics can build up in the jewelry over time and dull the appearance. If you do end up getting soap or lotion on your jewelry, rinse with warm water to melt away the film.

Be careful how you store it. Wearing silver jewelry often actually prevents tarnish. However, there are times when you'll want to take it off, such as when working with previously mentioned chemicals, bathing, swimming, or sleeping. During these times, jewelry should be stored in an airtight zip lock bag or other container. Avoid placing silver jewelry in a wood or cardboard storage area, as these materials can actually damage silver.

Use anti-tarnish products. Products like anti-tarnish strips, squares, pouches, and boxes protect the items. Look for products that are easy to use, non-toxic, and non-abrasive for best results. You may also want to avoid using creams, as they can leave traces of harmful chemicals on your jewelry. Make sure to ask questions before purchasing anti tarnish jewelry products to ensure you choose the best for your jewelry. Find out about the chemicals, ingredients, and how to use the products. It's always better to be safe than sorry, and some anti-tarnish products can cause more damage than good.

Avoid dip solutions. Sure, they may be highly commercialized, but that doesn't mean that they are good for your silver jewelry. Some dip solutions may offer a quick fix to dull jewelry the first couple of times you use them. However, they also tend to use very strong chemicals that might cause damage to the metal, stones, and beads and strip away their beauty.

Avoid cleaning damaged jewelry. If your jewelry becomes broken or damaged, avoid cleaning it. Cleaning damaged jewelry can cause further harm or even destruction. Wait until after you have it repaired, or better yet, ask your jeweler to clean it for you after he or she repairs it.

With these five tips, your jewelry will be looking good as new in no time. You can achieve the same shiny appearance and luster that the jewelry had when you first got it. You could even pass down the jewelry to further generations in your family and they'll think they have a brand new gem!