Ultimate Guide: Ways to Clean Your Trophies And Keep Them Pristine

Ultimate Guide: Ways to Clean Your Trophies And Keep Them Pristine

As a proud recipient of a trophy or award, you’ll want to showcase it somewhere it gets a lot of appreciation. Over time, the sheen and gleam of these precious symbols may fade, and you’ll need to clean them to keep them looking great. In this quick guide, we’ll explore various ways you can clean your trophies, based on their material and construction, ensuring they remain in pristine condition for years to come.

1. Cleaning Gold and Silver Trophies

Gold and silver trophies, whether solid or plated, require special care and attention when cleaning. The primary cause of oxidation in these precious metals is air humidity and contamination. To keep your gold and silver trophies looking their best, consider the following cleaning methods:

a. Plain Water Washing

Most dirt and mild stains can be easily removed with plain water washing or by using a mild soap solution. You can also use a gentle washing detergent as an alternative to soap. After applying the detergent, rinse the trophy thoroughly and gently wipe it down with a soft cloth or silverware drying pad. Avoid using abrasive materials that can scratch the surface.

b. Emersion cleaning

To give your gold or silver trophy an emersion clean, you’ll need an aluminium foil, baking soda, and boiling water. Follow these steps:

  1. Use a bowl, and line the inner surface with aluminium foil.
  2. Boil water and add 3 or 4 tablespoons of baking soda. You can sprinkle the baking soda over the trophy too if preferred.
  3. Pour the boiling water into the bowl, enough to cover the whole trophy.
  4. Allow the water to cool down, then carefully hold the trophy and dry it completely with a soft cloth that won’t scratch.

c. Toothpaste

This is not a method favoured by the professional cleaners but the abrasive action in toothpaste can be an effective cleaning agent for gold and silver trophies. Apply the toothpaste to the trophy’s surface and gently rub with your fingers or a gentle toothbrush for hard to reach places. Rinse well after a few minutes with fresh water and thoroughly dry with a soft cloth. However, be cautious when using this method, as there is a risk of scratching the surface.

2. Cleaning Bronze and Pewter Trophies

Bronze and pewter trophies don’t tarnish like gold and silver but may develop a grubby appearance over time. To clean these metals, follow these steps:

  1. Use a cloth to remove any surface dirt.
  2. If necessary, wash the trophy with plain water or a mild detergent solution as described in the gold and silver trophy cleaning section.

3. Cleaning Copper and Steel Trophies

Copper and steel are durable metals that can be cleaned with ease. Most households have stainless steel and copper utensils, and you can apply similar cleaning methods to your copper or steel trophies. In most cases, plain water or detergent washing is sufficient to refresh the appearance of these metal trophies.

4. Cleaning Glass and Crystal Trophies

Glass, acrylic, and crystal trophies require the utmost care when cleaning to avoid damage. Follow these steps to clean your glass and crystal trophies:

  1. Use soapy water to remove light marks.
  2. For stubborn dirt and stains, use a glass cleaner solution.
  3. Be cautious when washing and drying these delicate trophies, and always use a non-abrasive or soft cloth.

5. Cleaning Plastic and Resin Trophies

Plastic and resin trophies are durable and resistant to weathering effects, but they can still become stained. To clean these trophies:

  1. Wash them with plain water, detergent, or baking soda.
  2. Dry with a soft cloth.

6. Cleaning Marble Trophies

Marble is a common base material used in various trophies and awards. To clean marble components:

  1. Determine whether the marble is soft or hard, as soft marble types require extra care when cleaning with acidic solutions.
  2. In most cases, plain water or detergent washing is sufficient to remove dirt and stains on marble parts of a trophy.

7. Cleaning Wood Trophies

Polished wood trophies typically require minimal cleaning, other than removing dust with a cloth or wind blower. To clean wooden trophies:

  1. Use a soft cloth or brush to remove dirt from the surface.
  2. Apply wood polish to restore the trophy’s original shine.

8. Cleaning Hunting Trophies

Mounted hunting trophies often feature preserved animal parts, such as fur, bones, teeth, horns, or tails. To clean these trophies:

  1. Use a dry or damp cloth for regular cleaning.
  2. Apply chemical preservatives and safe cleaners on a regular schedule to extend the lifespan of the trophy.

9. General Trophy Care Tips

To maintain your trophies’ beauty and longevity, keep these general care tips in mind:

  1. Regularly dust your trophies with a soft cloth or feather duster.
  2. Keep your trophies away from direct sunlight or heat sources, as these may cause discoloration or damage.
  3. Store your trophies in a cool, dry place to minimize the risk of oxidation or damage.

10. Professional Trophy Cleaning Services

If you’re unsure about how to clean your trophies properly, consider seeking professional help. Online Trophies has the knowledge, experience, and specialised equipment necessary to clean and restore your trophies without causing any harm. We can usually repair broken trophies too, although that is regarded as a separate service.

Proper care and attention of your trophies is essential in maintaining their appearance and value, and ensuring they last a long time. Remember, if you’re unsure about how to clean a specific trophy material, it’s always best to consult a professional to avoid any potential damage. Give us a call if you rather not do it yourself – we’ll have your trophy looking good as new in no time.