Enamel pins are popular collectibles, but they can be difficult to maintain properly.
If you own a collection of enamel pins, then you need to know how to clean them. The good news is that it’s not as difficult as it sounds. With a few simple steps and the right supplies, you can keep your pins looking pristine and shiny for years.
We’ve created a step-by-step guide on how to clean enamel pins so that you don’t have to worry about your collection getting dull and dirty. Our guide covers everything from what supplies you need, what cleaning methods to use, and how to store cleaned pins safely.
Let’s get started!
What Are Enamel Pins?
Enamel pins are small pins, usually worn on the lapel of a jacket, that feature designs from branded logos to offbeat illustrations. They are made of plated metal and enamel paint, giving them an attractive and hard-wearing finish.
Enamel pins come in many shapes and sizes, and can be used to display your interests or show off a logo or brand. They’re becoming increasingly popular in the fashion world as a way to add personality and flair to your attire. From classic lapel pins to quirky patterned designs, there is something for everyone!
Initial Pin Cleaning Techniques
Cleaning enamel pins often seems daunting and a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. With a few simple steps and some basic cleaning supplies, you can make your pins look as good as new!
First, you should always test any polishing agent on a small part of the pin first to make sure it doesn’t damage the enamel. After testing, use a small cotton swab and polishing cream to remove dirt and grime from more delicate areas.
For more hardened dirt, crusting around the pin site can be removed with either cotton swabs or tweezer cleaned with alcohol on sterile gauze. Make sure to clean off any remaining residue with a damp cloth or paper towel after removing tough dirt. Be sure the area is dry before putting on the pin again.
By following these easy steps, your enamel pins will look brand new in no time!
Taking Off Dirt and Grime From Pins
If your enamel pin has accumulated dirt and grime, you can use a few simple steps to safely remove it.
- Start by gently wiping off any excess dirt with a soft cloth. Make sure that the cloth isn’t too abrasive, as it could damage the pin’s surface.
- Once the excess dirt is removed, dampen a cotton swab with alcohol, such as rubbing alcohol. Then use the swab to carefully remove the dirt and grime.
- Wipe off any remaining residue with a soft cotton cloth, and voila – your pin is as good as new!
It’s important to avoid using household cleaners, chemical cleaners or citrus or vinegar solutions on your pins, as these can be damaging to the enamel.
Methods to Revive Worn Colors on Pins
If your enamel pins start to look a bit dull, or if their colors have been wearing away over time, you might want to try some methods to revive their vibrancy.
Polishing & Waxing
Using a jewelry polishing cloth can help to restore a tarnished pin back to its former glory. Be sure to test the cloth on a small part of the surface before rubbing it all over the pin. Additionally, coatings of wax or polyurethane can help preserve the pin’s shiny appeal and stop it from discoloring further.
Waterless Hand Cleaner
Removing dirt and oils from your pins with waterless hand cleaner can help maintain the color as well as make them shine. Simply wipe down the surface with a damp cloth and then dry it off with another one before applying the hand cleaner – this will really make your pins sparkle!
It’s important to remember that household cleaners should be avoided here as they could potentially ruin the color and shine of your beloved pins.
How to Clean the Back of the Pin
The back of an enamel pin can often be the most neglected part of pin care. Poor cleaning practices can lead to the deterioration of the back of the pin, as well as cause dirt and grime to accumulate on the entire pin. Fortunately, there are several ways to keep your enamel pins looking like new.
First, you should use a soft cloth and non-abrasive polishing creams to clean the back of your pins. You can also use a soft toothbrush and Dawn dish soap for gentle cleaning. This will remove any oil that may have been transferred from your hands onto the back of your pins. Furthermore, this will help to remove any tarnished layers that have formed over time due to oxidation or long-term exposure to moisture. Finally, make sure to dry off any excess moisture with a clean cloth before storing away your pins away in their designated container.
Tips for Long-Term Enamel Pin Care
Hard enamel pins are the ideal choice if you’re looking to keep your pins looking their best for years to come. Here are a few tips on how to ensure your pins stay in top condition:
Regular cleaning is essential for maintaining the original shine of hard enamel pins. To clean them, use a soft toothbrush and a mild dish soap solution. Gently scrub the pin’s surface before rinsing with lukewarm water. You can also opt to use a specially-made jewelry cleaner or cloth, depending on the finish of your pin. After cleaning, dry with a soft cloth and store away from moisture.
Make sure you don’t expose your pins to abrasive detergents or harsh chemicals, as this can result in fading and tarnishing of colors.
Reduce Contact with Washing Machine
For safety reasons, avoid putting your pins in the washing machine if at all possible; even if they’re covered by fabric, friction from the water and heat could strain the inks and damage their colors over time. If hand washing isn’t an option, place them in a fabric pouch or sock before throwing them into the wash cycle – that way you can reduce contact with water during spinning.
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All in all, cleaning enamel pins is a relatively easy process, but requires a little bit of extra care. Whether you use common household items or specialized enamel pin cleaning solutions, always make sure to use a soft, non-abrasive cloth and a gentle touch. Be sure to keep an eye out for any damaged pins, and contact the manufacturer for repairs if needed. With a bit of effort and patience, your pins can look as good as new and you can have the confidence to proudly show them off.