Pour a small amount of Coke into a bowl and submerge your silver into it. Let it sit for 15 minutes. The acid in the drink will remove tarnish. Finally, rinse the silver with warm water.
Proper cleaning is the key to shiny silver jewelry and dinnerware.
You should regularly clean your silver for it to stay in good condition and Coca-Cola or Coke does a great job at keeping sterling or plated silver tarnish-free, shiny, and clean. You can also clean your silver with tomato paste, baking soda, etc.
In today’s article, we’ll teach you how to clean silver with Coke and other household products, so let’s dive right in and make your silver look as good as new.
Does Sterling Silver Tarnish?
Sterling silver can tarnish when exposed to humidity, chlorine, salty air, perspiration, bleach, cosmetics, sulfur, and other strong chemicals.
The good news? It’s only on the top layers. Therefore you can easily clean it up with simple products such as Coke and elbow grease.
Note that tarnishing will only worsen over time. So, you must clean it up as soon as possible. Otherwise, the cleaning task might get harder.
How Often Should You Clean Sterling Silver Jewelry?
Due to the properties of sterling silver, Pieces of its jewelry won’t tarnish easily.
As a metal, sterling silver doesn’t react with other chemicals easily. So, your everyday pieces of jewelry should stay looking shiny for a long time.
Keep in mind that jewelry that sits in your boxes unused for a while is more susceptible to tarnishing than the pieces you usually wear, so you should clean them regularly to prevent this from happening and keep them looking their best.
Items you wear all the time, such as rings, necklaces, and earrings, will require cleaning less often, whereas charms, bracelets, and pendants will need cleaning more often as they don’t get as much friction.
How to Clean Silver With Coke: Step-by-Step Guide
You can always clean your silver with silver polish, but if you’re on a budget or want to save money, purchase a bottle of Coca-Cola and follow the next steps.
Step 1: Find A Suitable Bowl or Container
Make sure your bowl or container fits all of the silver pieces you’re cleaning. Keep in mind that it should be deep enough to completely submerge your solver.
Once you find the perfect bowl or container, lay all the silver pieces on the bottom before pouring the Coke inside.
Step 2: Submerge Your Silver in Coca-Cola
Make sure your silver is fully submerged in the liquid. You can either use regular or Diet Coke. Replace Coca-Cola with any other carbonated cola if you can’t find it at the store.
Step 3: Let the Silver Soak for About 1 Hour
Give the acid in the beverage about 1 hour to clean up your silver. It will help loosen any residue and grime.
If it’s a heavily tarnished silver, let it soak for up to 3 hours. Make sure you check on it every 30 minutes to see how the process is going.
Step 4: Remove the Silver from the Liquid
Using a pair of tongs, remove the silver pieces from the Coke. Shake off any excess liquid in the sink and set the silver pieces on the table, towel, or paper towels.
Step 5: Use A Soft Toothbrush to Clean it Up
Using a soft toothbrush, remove any remaining residue in the hardly available spots. If you don’t have a spare toothbrush, you can also use a jewelry brush.
Step 6: Rinse Under Warm Water
Run all the silver pieces under clean water. You can also soak them in a bowl full of clean water or place them in a water bottle and shake it to rinse them properly.
Step 7: Dry the Silver Off with Paper Towels
As soon as you rinse the silver, dry it off with paper towels or a regular clean towel to prevent rust or tarnish. Make sure it’s fully dry before storing it away.
Step 8: Polish
Prepare a cleaning solution by mixing warm water and a small amount of dish soap. Dip a soft clean cloth into the soapy water and rub your silver pieces with it.
Finally, rinse the silver pieces with plain water and buff them dry using a towel.
7 Alternative Cleaning Methods for Silver
Silver products will become dirty and tarnish after being worn for a very long time or stored away for a while since they don’t obtain enough friction.
If Coke didn’t do much for your silver jewelry, you can try the next cleaning methods and restore the shine of your silver.
1. Soapy Water
Make a cleaning solution by mixing lukewarm water and a few drops of dishwashing soap in a small bowl. Then, scrub your silver gently with a soft toothbrush or jewelry brush.
You can also soak the silver in the bowl for about 15 minutes, then use the brush to gently remove the dirt. Finally, wipe your silver with a soft clean cloth.
Squeeze a small amount of toothpaste into a bowl and add water. Stir the solution. Then, using a soft toothbrush, clean your silver with it. Lastly, wash it with water and wipe your silver jewelry with a soft clean cloth or towel.
3. White Vinegar
After being oxidized, the silver jewelry will turn black over time. If this happens with yours, you can easily clean it with good old white vinegar.
Pour a small amount of white vinegar into a bowl and soak your silver pieces in it for about 30 minutes. Next, scrub your silver jewelry with a toothbrush to lift any remaining residue in delicate parts and then rinse.
Soak your oxidized silver in tea water overnight. The next day, remove the jewelry pieces from the tea and rinse under cold water.
5. Aluminum Foil
Grab a bowl and cover the bottom of it with aluminum foil. Make sure the bright side of the foil is facing up.
Then, place the silver inside and pour a generous amount of salt over it. The salt must cover the silver pieces in their entirety. After that, add boiling water over it and stir with a spoon, chopsticks, or any other tool that you have at hand.
Give the solution a few minutes to act before you scrub your jewelry with any type of brush to remove any residue.
Cleaning silver in this way won’t harm the material. On the contrary, the salt and foil will help you restore the shine of your silver pieces.
6. Baking Soda
Get a plastic container that’s large enough to hold all of the tarnished pieces. Line it with aluminum foil. Again, make sure the shiny side is facing up.
Then, boil as much water as necessary to cover all the silver pieces you’re cleaning once they’re in the container.
Pour the boiling water into the bowl, then add 2 tablespoons of baking soda per liter of water (1 cup of baking soda per gallon of water).
Place the silver pieces in the bowl and let them soak for about 30 minutes. Flip your silver pieces midst soaking with kitchen tongs. Next, take out the pieces and place them inside your sink. Let the silver cool down before scrubbing off any residue with a toothbrush.
Repeat the cleaning process if there’s tarnish remaining.
8. Tomato Sauce
Squirt a generous amount of ketchup or any other type of tomato product like sauce or paste into a bowl. Then, submerge your silver in the product and let it sit for a few minutes.
Remember that the acid in the tomatoes can harm your jewelry if left in for too long. Finally, scrub your jewelry using a soft toothbrush and rinse with water.
3 Tips for Caring for Sterling Silver Jewelry
Preventing tarnish is much easier than cleaning it. In other words, taking good care of your silver will reduce the cleaning time and effort, so look after your jewelry with these 3 easy tips.
1. Handle Silver With Gemstones Carefully
If you own silver jewelry with gemstones, never soak it in water, as this could loosen the stones by dissolving the adhesive.
Also, avoid using harsh scrubbing tools, which can damage your jewelry.
2. Store Your Silver Jewelry Properly
Avoid wrapping your silver jewelry in rubber or latex as these materials could react with the metal. Moreover, avoid using metal trays or tins. Instead, store your jewelry in jewelry rolls and boxes.
Lastly, keep a silica gel sachet or chalk in your jewelry boxes to decrease moisture and humidity inside your silver jewelry storage.
3. Wear It Regularly
Wearing your silver jewelry frequently and letting it get the friction of being worn can reduce and even prevent tarnishing, so have it on more often.
Don’t forget to remove it before showering, bathing, or washing the dishes to reduce moisture exposure. Also, make sure your skin is dry before putting your jewelry back on.
FAQs on How to Clean Silver With Coke
Can you clean silver with lemon juice?
You can successfully clean silver with lemon juice as it’s a natural acid that helps clean the tarnish. You can either soak your silver in a bowl of lemon juice and water or dip the silver into lemon juice and scrub it with a soft cloth.
Does Coke clean Pandora?
Since Pandora jewelry pieces are made of sterling silver, you can safely soak them in Coke and restore their shine.