Simple Silver Cleaning and Polishing

by Doris Donnerman
(last updated April 3, 2017)

There are a few things that must be mentioned before attempting to clean your silver yourself. The first is that silver is a soft and malleable metal, easily scratched, so do not use any harsh abrasive cleansers or other materials. The second thing to remember is that you will have to clean your silver repeatedly. Wiping down silver jewelry and silverware takes care of basic cleaning, but on average it is a good idea to clean and polish items every month or so, in order to remove the tarnish that always seems to accumulate.

The following methods will work on removing that tarnish buildup. These options are easily found in the house, quite often in your kitchen or bathroom cabinet.

  1. Toothpaste, surprisingly, works well in cleaning and polishing your silver. All that is needed is to smear the toothpaste over the tarnished silver. Once the silver has been coated, run water that is warm to the touch over the toothpaste and work it into a lather. Rinse off the silver and you should have a nice and shiny piece again. To reach any nooks and crannies that are difficult to reach, use an old soft-bristled toothbrush with the toothpaste. You will want to dry the piece, if possible, with a soft piece of cloth.
  2. A paste of baking soda will work just as well as the toothpaste. You need to use a moist piece of old soft cloth to apply the paste, rub it on, rinse it off and polish it. Gentle steady pressure is required during this. No need to scrub so hard that your hands and fingers get stiff; let the chemical reaction work for you.
  3. Another chemical reaction that you can use to work for you is that of aluminum, salt, baking soda and water. Get something like a Pyrex baking dish and line the bottom with aluminum foil. Boil some water (enough for three or four inches of water in the baking dish) and one teaspoon each of baking soda and salt. Pour the resulting mix into the baking dish and simply place your silver into the water for about five minutes. Then remove, rinse off with clean water, dry and buff.

Author Bio

Doris Donnerman

Doris is a jack of all trades, writing on a variety of topics. Her articles have helped enlighten and entertain thousands over the years. ...


Removing Tear Stains from Pet Fur

Have you ever noticed how the most beautiful light-furred animals have a tendency to get stains around their eyes? If you ...

Discover More

Getting Your Car Unstuck from Snow or Mud

Have you ever had the miserable experience of being stuck in snow or mud? If so, there are a few things you can do to ...

Discover More

Quesadillas and Corn on the Cob

Here is a great meal that is easy for those nights you don't feel like cooking. Quesadillas and corn on the cob is a meal ...

Discover More

Tough Cleaning Jobs Require Brawny! Brawny paper towels provide the versatility you need: the strength for demanding jobs and the softness to clean up your child's messy face. This 24-roll pack of pick-a-size sheets can handle just about every cleaning task in your home. Check out Brawny 24-Pack Giant Paper Towels today!

More Cleaning Tips

Removing Rust Stains from Wood-burning Stoves

If you've ever used an iron skillet or pot, then you probably know that you have to safeguard the metal from rust, keep ...

Discover More

Homemade Chrome Cleaners

Chrome can be a particularly difficult metal to clean, and often the cleaners that are designed for them cost way more ...

Discover More

Cleaning Cast Iron

Cleaning cast iron is not complicated. The basic rules are to clean and scrub down to the bare metal, and then treat it. ...

Discover More

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in Cleaning Tips from Tips.Net. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.


If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is four less than 8?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)

Newest Tips

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in Cleaning Tips from Tips.Net. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.