Silver jewelry is quite popular among teens and elders for being an elegant, affordable, and chiasmatic piece of ornamentation, which goes along with almost every type of dress. The association of silver with elegance has been so for very long; however, an apparent hitch would be the tarnishing or blackening of silver wear over time, which dims its vibrance. ​​But the good news is that with a bit of effort, using the do-it-yourself methods explained in this blog post you can clean silver jewelry at home.

Easy DIY Methods To Clean Silver Jewelry at Home

1. Soap and Water 

For mild tarnishing on silver jewelry, ammonium and phosphate-free dishwashing soap coupled with warm water work best. The water temperature can be between 90-110° Fahrenheit, and the soap should be used accordingly depending upon the quantity of jewelry being washed. 

This method involves fewer chemicals that might damage your jewelry items and thus should be the first go-to option. 

2. Baking Soda and Aluminum Foil

Baking soda has been known to work wonders when it comes to cleaning products. This method is known to have the most positive reviews in regard to cleaning silver jewelry. Here are the steps you can follow in cleaning tarnish that won’t go away with mild soap:

  • Take a piece of aluminum foil and cover the bowl or plate with it. 

(Note: You can use an aluminum plate as well)

  • Next, add one tablespoon of baking soda in it. 

(Note: Water softener powder can be used as an alternative as well.)

  • Pour hot water on it and mix the solution with a spoon. 
  • Submerge the tarnished jewelry in the solution for about 15 seconds or more, depending on the tarnishing. 
  • Remove the jewelry and clean it with paper towels. 

The tarnish should be gone by then. However, it is important to note that products with heavy tarnishing will not look new with just this method. Additional polishing might still be needed to get it shining like before. 

3. Lemon Juice and Olive Oil

Lemon juice can help remove oxidized buildups in jewelry due to its acidic properties. You can use ¼ cup lemon juice and ½ tsp—olive oil to clean your jewelry items. Use a piece of cloth to dip it in the solution and rub the tarnish off of the silver. 

Clean it with warm water afterward and dry with a clean towel. 

Alternatives to Olive Oil:

Lemon juice can be coupled with bath salt or powdered milk as well to achieve the same results. Here’s how:

  • In about half a cup of lemon juice, add 4 tablespoons of bath salt. Add 1 cup of hot water and place your jewelry in it. Leave it there for 2-5 minutes. Rub it with a cloth afterward, and rinse with lukewarm water. Dry it with a clean towel and you’re good to go!
  • In a bowl, mix one and a half cups of warm water, one tablespoon of lemon juice, and a half cup of powdered milk. Mix the content, and place it in your jewelry for 6-8 hours. Take it out afterward, rinse and clean with lukewarm water, and dry it. The tarnish should be gone, leaving behind a vibrant shine. 

4. Toothpaste 

Toothpaste is also another famous DIY cleaner for household items. For example, to clean your silver jewelry, use a non-whitening formula toothpaste, dilute it with water, and with a soft-bristle brush, gently rub off the tarnish. Make sure not to use this method on silver-plated jewelry, as it can remove the layer as well. 

5. Window Cleaning Detergent

Window cleaners are also an excellent option to clean your silver jewelry, as they help remove dirt buildups and also help restore the shine of sterling silver. 

You can spray it on a toothbrush and gently scrub off the affected areas. However, be careful not to use it on antique silver jewelry as it can be fragile and damaged easily. 

6. Hand Sanitizer

Hand sanitizer can work with silver jewelry items, but you should avoid using it directly. Instead, squeeze a small amount on a clean cloth and gently scrub off the tarnish present on the jewelry. Clean it with water afterward and dry it to prevent any further oxidization. 

7. Ketchup or Mayonnaise

This might sound like a strange option to clean your jewelry, but it can actually work in helping you clean your silver ornaments. Ketchup and mayonnaise contain vinegar and some other strong ingredients, which help remove the blackening on silver jewelry items. Just take a small amount of one of the two and leave it on the jewelry for about 10-15 minutes. Afterward, clean it with a cloth and rinse it under warm water. Lastly, dry it with a paper towel and it should do the job. 

Things to Avoid while Cleaning Silver Jewelry:

  • Do NOT use these methods on jewelry with precious or semi-precious stones. It does not risk your expensive jewelry items, so we advise you to seek professional cleaning services. 
  • These do-it-yourself methods are NOT suitable for vintage, or antiqued silver, as well as for costume jewelry.


DIY methods have been famous for being cheap, easy, and accessible to everyone, and silver jewelry is especially popular among the youth, particularly girls. Hence, using DIY methods to clean silver ornaments is a good go-to option to keep your silver jewelry with you for a long time. However, like with each DIY method, there is no guarantee of absolute results. However, the methods have been tested and known to work, with good positive outcomes, and thus are highly recommended. Just look out for the warnings and these should work just fine! Happy cleaning! For cleaning services visit us.

Frequently Asked Questions:

  1. Does pure silver rust?

    Just like pure gold, pure silver does not rust. However, it is very soft and thus cannot be used to make utensils or jewelry items. It is therefore paired with another metal, typically copper, and is commonly known as sterling silver.

  2. Which toothpaste is best for cleaning silver?

    We recommend using plain, solid-colored toothpaste with no extras, like baking soda, tartar control, or whitening agents. Also, avoid using gel toothpaste. 

  3. What causes tarnishing?

    Tarnish is a byproduct of a chemical reaction between a metal and a nonmetal compound. The non-metal is usually oxygen or sulfur dioxide, which are highly reactive toward metals and cause oxidation. 

  4. How do you stop silver oxidizing?

    o slow down the process of tarnishing, make sure to clean your silver jewelry regularly, as moisture and oils from your skin can cause it to oxidize. 

  5. What is the best way to store silver jewelry?

    We recommend storing your silver jewelry in plastic bags with a zip-top bag, or a box lined with soft cotton. Avoid using wooden boxes for storage.