Around 18 months ago, an little incident occurred in relation to my much-loved Pandora bracelet. Having worn the bracelet every day since I received it as a gift from my husband, I didn’t pay any thought to removing it before going swimming with my daughter.
It wasn’t the first time my lovely bracelet had come into contact with water, since I’d kept it on my wrist whilst swimming before. However, on this particular day, I think I must have visited the most heavily chlorinated swimming pool in the whole of the UK.
When I got out, I realised that the chlorine in the water had totally ruined my bracelet, turning it from bright and shiny to horribly dull and dirty. I was rather mortified and tried everything I could think of to remove the tarnish, before failing miserably. I hid it away for some time, until my husband noticed I wasn’t wearing it, at which point I had to fess up.
Here’s what my bracelet looked like after the swimming pool incident!
Not great, right? Each one of the charms had been bought for me as a gift to celebrate a special occasion or memory, so I was totally gutted to have ruined it like this! I left the bracelet tucked away in a drawer, until I came across this fantastic article which explained how to remove tarnish from silver jewellery! Please do have a read of it for full instructions and how the process of removing tarnish actually works, once you’ve finished reading my post.
Before I explain what I did that actually worked, here are the methods I tried before that all failed…
- Washing the bracelet with gentle detergent and water.
- Washing it with soap and water.
- Rubbing with a special jewellery-cleaning cloth.
- Soaking in lemon juice and salt.
- Soaking in lemon juice and vinegar.
(I’d read somewhere that old fashioned cleaning methods involved lemon juice and vinegar, so thought it was worth a shot!).
Here’s what I did that worked….
- I covered a small bowl in aluminium foil (could have used an tin foil plate if I had access to one).
- I added 1 x tablespoon of salt and 1 x tablespoon of bicarbonate of soda (baking soda) into the bowl.
- I then poured some hot (not boiling) water into the bowl and mixed the salt and bicarbonate of soda together until they dissolved.
- I removed the charms from the bracelet and put them into the bowl separately as well as the bracelet chain itself.
- I left the bracelet chain and charms to soak for around 10 minutes before removing.
When I took the bracelet out of the solution, I could see already that it was starting to look a lot better (after 18 months no less!). To finish making it look just about as good as new, I polished it with my silver jewellery cleaning cloth and it just helped to remove any remnants of tarnish.
Here’s what my bracelet looked like after cleaning!
A million times better! I’m so happy that I can wear my bracelet again! Time to start thinking about future ones to add onto it! I came across this really cute Mickey and Minnie safety chain charm on Amazon, which I’d love because Disney will always hold a special place in my heart. We took our daughter to Disneyland Paris in January and we have lots of amazing memories from the trip.
So there you have it, this is how I salvaged my extremely tarnished Pandora bracelet! It’s worth noting that this process shouldn’t be used for jewellery that is made from antiqued silver or if it contains semi-precious or precious stones. If your jewellery is really valuable, then you should consider taking it to a professional jeweller just in case.
But if you are looking for a DIY home solution, I hope this post has helped you!
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*Pandora bracelet images are the copyright of Craftaholique.