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Topics: Metal Beads, Findings, Plating

Q.
I have silver tone fashion jewelry that with only a few times of wearing it, the silver tone begins to rub off. I know they will not last a lifetime, but I can only wear them a few times before they look old and faded. I know this happens because of the oils on my skin and products I use. My question is the following, is there any type of silver tone or even sterling silver finish liquid or spray or even paint that you can brush on to "refinish" these pieces and make them look new again? Thank you!
- Paola
A.
Having your jewelry professionally replated is the best way to repair damaged or worn plating. Visit your preferred jewelry store to see what the cost would be and then consider getting a second quote before making a final decision.

For a temporary solution, you can try the following to help disguise the affected area:

Brush on a layer of Mona Lisa™ Metal Leaf™ gold leaf adhesive, apply a piece of silver leaf sheet then seal the leaf with Mona Lisa Metal Leaf for protection of the leaf surface and resistance to tarnish. Obtain a thicker metal texture by applying two or more layers of metal leaf. Another affordable solution is to use Krylon brand leafing pens to temporarily camouflage the damaged area. They are available in five metallic shades including silver, and are advertised to adhere to wood, metal, plastic, glass and more.

Another option is to apply a Swellegant!™ metal coating. This line created by Christi Friesen allows almost any material to be coated with metal using a brush-on technique.

Either option will leave you with metallic color-match issues to deal with and you may have to cover more than just the damaged area for color blending. Keep in mind that a camouflaged/ modified piece of vintage or costume jewelry may lose monetary value.

In the future, to help prolong the life of silver finished jewelry, following manufacturer's instructions, apply one or two coats of Mona Lisa Metal Leaf sealant then reapply as needed.

- Michelle Wood, Jewelry-Making Expert

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