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Does Clear Nail Polish Keep Jewelry from Tarnishing?

If you are obsessed with fancy ornaments, we guess your liking for a glittering piece doesn’t stop on the price tag. Maybe that’s why most fashionistas’ collections include less expensive jewelry as well as expensive ones made of gold or silver.

For any jewelry lover, it’s most important to keep their loves in their best possible condition for a long time. So they’re always looking for easy but effective ways or DIYs to try such as putting transparent nail polish on jewelry to prevent dullness.

But does it really work? Let’s dig in the depth.

Does clear nail polish keep jewelry from tarnishing?

Putting clear nail polish can protect the jewelry from tarnishing but not for a long time. The layer of nail polish will get peeled off after a time exposing the jewelry to the air and moisture. Moreover, applying transparent nail polish on dull or damaged ornaments doesn’t help at all.  

Applying a layer of clear nail polish is able to keep ornaments from losing their beauty but for a limited duration. Also, it only can prevent tarnishing to some extent. Putting it on already discolored metals isn’t worth it at all. 

Let’s know if this DIY is effective for these materials listed below:

Gold Jewelry:

Gold Jewelry that’s made of 14 karat gold or less can tarnish since there are other metals mixed in it. Putting clear nail polish over these can help to prevent tarnishing for a while. But more than that it will keep your finger from turning green.

Gold Plated Jewelry:

Gold-plated jewelry easily loses its charm after some time. If you layer their surface with a fine coat of transparent nail polish, it will be safe from the external environment. Therefore, the piece will discolor too soon. 

But if the gold-plated jewelry isn’t of good quality, using nail polish will ruin it by removing the texture and color instead.

Silver Jewelry:

Silver is a precious metal but except a piece of jewelry is made of fine silver that’s 100% pure, it’ll tarnish after a while. Silver jewelry can oxidize when in frequent connection with humidity, moisture, or air. 

But putting a layer of clear nail polish over silver jewelry can protect it from oxidizing for a short time. 

Silver Plated Jewelry:

Ornaments that are silver plated lose their color and shine after a few days. So to keep it away from moisture and air, clear nail polish can be layered on the outer surface. It will keep it shiny until the nail polish gets off.

However, for some inexpensive ones, this hack might bring more trouble as it can rip off the silver plating with its ingredients.

Copper Jewelry:

Clear nail polish works well to seal copper jewelry. If you apply a thin layer on it, it’s usable for more days. However, copper jewelry can tarnish after the nail polish is removed.

Can you clear coat jewelry?

Jewelry, especially the ones made with cheap material, easily lose their color and shine after several uses. Some expensive metals like gold and silver also tarnish after a certain time because of outer exposition and frequent usage. 

Apart from polishing them after the damage is done, you can prevent them from tarnishing for a short time.

Using a clear coat is a popular hack to keep ornaments good-looking. Although it does not offer long-time protection, it preserves them from air and moisture. 

Unless the material of the ornaments is too vulnerable and cheap, clear coats will not ruin their shades and color. Instead, they might help the gold color and silver plating to stay in place.

So you can clear coat jewelry with a goal to keep them new for more time. To do that transparent nail polish or anti-tarnish coatings can be used.

What does clear nail polish do to jewelry?

Applying clear nail polish on costume jewelry even on gold, silver, copper jewelry has been a trend these days. Jewelry lovers do this to keep ornaments looking shiny and new for a long time

Surprisingly, this hack works great to prevent early discoloration or tarnishing of the jewelry.

Jewelry made of cheap materials such as a combination of different metals fades soon. External factors water, air, etc. damage their outer surface washing off the plating.

Ornaments of gold, silver oxidize often when they come in contact with external weather.

Clear nail polish when applied to jewelry creates a shield between the jewelry and the outer environment. Thus the item doesn’t oxidize if exposed to the air and doesn’t shed its plating if it touches water. 

Since the nail polish is clear, contains no color, the real shades of the jewelry remain the same.

How to put clear nail polish on jewelry?

You can keep your jewelry from getting discolored by applying transparent nail polish over them. Follow these steps to do that properly: 

Choose your jewelry:

Pick ornaments that are not tarnished yet. Because damaged pieces can’t get a new look with this trick. Avoid items that are covered in stones. 

Take a clear nail polish:

Take a clear nail polish of good consistency. Thick or sticky nail polishes can ruin your work.

Hold the ornaments right:

You’ve to hold the items correctly to apply nail polish without getting interrupted. For example, with their locks or hooks. Using a tweezer to pick and hold ornaments is a good idea.

Apply thin layers:

apply a thin layer over the jewelry piece. Coating the piece with a heavy layer will ruin its appearance and make it look rough. A thin and smooth coat of transparent nail polish makes it brighter and glossy.

Coat the corners and sides:

Not just the upper surface, also the edges and inner base should be sealed with clear nail polish. Thus, the whole piece will look polished and shiny.

Avoid reapplication:

Don’t reapply nail polish on a jewelry item. It will make the surface heavier and uneven. Also, too much nail polish can take away the color of inexpensive jewelry that is color-plated.

Let them dry:

After you’re done, keep them air dry. You can use them when they don’t feel sticky to touch. 

How long does clear nail polish last on jewelry?

Clear nail polish might protect your jewelry from tarnishing but not for a long time.

Transparent nail polish doesn’t last long on ornaments. They will flake off the jewelry after a month or two even if you don’t wear them a lot

On jewelry that is frequently used, the coating of transparent nail polish lasts even shorter like a week or two. After that, you will see layers falling off from random parts. Because regularly used ornaments get in contact with air or water a lot. 

Even if the nail polish is applied in two layers, it will come off after some time. Since they are made for temporary use on nails, using them to seal ornaments will not provide long-time protection.

After a month or two, you have to apply clear nail polish over the jewelry again.

How do you keep jewelry from tarnishing?

A jewelry-obsessed person keeps various accessory pieces of different price ranges. So there is a chance that some ornaments can fade too soon since they aren’t made with high-quality materials.

If you own some jewelry and wondering how to keep them from fading, here are some ways:

Keep them organized:

Organize the jewelry in order so that they don’t collide with each other. There are boxes available with compartments, which can help to keep different jewelry pieces separately.

Preserve it appropriately:

Keep your jewelry in a box lightly wrapped in a cotton cloth or velvet. Store the box in a dry and cool place. You can place silica bags in the box as well.

Keep them away from moisture:

Keep your jewelry at a safe distance from any type of liquid, lotion, or water. Moisture is one of the reasons jewelry gets dull too fast.

Clean them regularly:

You should clean your jewels from time to time and after using them. Gold, silver, or other precious metal-made ornaments can be cleaned using a dishwasher mixed with lukewarm water and a soft brush or cloth. 

Make sure you dry them well before storing them.

Imitation or costume ornaments should be dry cleaned and if possible keep them away from any kind of moisture as they get tarnished too soon.

Use protector or coating:

You can use jewelry protecting spray, anti-tarnishing sealers, or even clear nail polish to prevent them from tarnishing in the future.

Final Thoughts:

Clear nail polish when applied over jewelry can keep them from tarnishing for a short period. If applied properly they look shiny even after several uses. But after a month or two they will be again exposed to the air and humid weather as layers of nail polish will flake off.