Silver cleaning cloths take care of your fine home accessories--but they also need care of their own. Dirty silver cleaning cloths will interfere with removal of the gray tarnish muddying up your silver finish, making that brilliant shine elusive. Whether you are using a pre-treated silver cleaning cloth, or a polishing cloth with your own liquid or foam cleaner, the following suggestions will help the cloth take care of your silver.
A soft 100 percent cotton cloth is important to achieving good results in polishing silver. Pre-treated cloths are cotton and come ready-to-polish right out of the package. Polishing liquids and foams will achieve the best results when they are applied with a soft cotton fabric such as flannel, an old baby diaper or a dusting and polishing cloth available for purchase just for this purpose. Polishing cloths for use with liquids and foams can be laundered; however pre-treated silver polishing cloths cannot or you will wash away the polishing compound within them.
Fold and Unfold As You Polish
The silver cleaning cloth will become darker gray, even black with tarnish that has been transferred from the silver to the cloth. Fold the cloth into quarters and use different sections as you continue polishing your silver item to get the most efficient use of the entire cloth.
Pre-treated silver cleaning cloths usually come in a package suitable for storage. If the cloth has clean areas left, slide it back into its original package for storage until a future use. Alternatively, a zip lock plastic bag works well. Keep the cloth in a drawer or shelf with your other cleaning supplies. If you are using liquid or foam polish for your larger or more detailed items, launder the cloth in the wash after each use and store it clean with your bottled products.
Silver cleaning cloths are designed to be thrown away and not reused after they are covered with gray tarnish. Using the cloth past this point may damage the silver, since the dirt and dust particles stuck in the tarnish on the cloth can cause small scratches when they are re-rubbed onto the silver finish.