I inherited an antique copper boiler/wash tub when I was in my early 20's. It had an amazing patina but for years I wanted to polish it to see what was hidden beneath the surface. I tried so many different products but nothing worked until one day, I tried something that I thought would never work but it did, like magic!
The Secret Sauce for Cleaning and Polishing Copper Effortlessly
Here is a view of the copper boiler before I attempted to clean it. It's dented and well-used but I love it. It was my father's mother's and she used it to wash clothes in it. I cannot (thankfully) even imagine what that entailed. She had 8 children and washing that many clothes in a boiler???? It makes me appreciate it even more knowing that that is what this was used for.
So now, for the secret sauce so to speak. Ketchup. Basic, inexpensive ketchup. When I first read the tip over a decade ago, I blew it off thinking there is no way it would work. I instead tried so many chemical concoctions but after trying and failing, I remembered ketchup and gave it a try.
I almost could NOT believe the difference!
And here is the gorgeous after! It still has some patina in the bottom creases but overall, I love the pink glow. Like a giant new penny. You can see the entire post including tips for the process on my blog in this post at The How-To Home. I hope to see you there!
P on Aug 15, 2021
I use my French grandmother's method - salt & lemon juice - I use the lemon rind with salt on it to rub the mixture around on brass or copper - Revere-ware pots, tea kettle, candlesticks, a brass lamp - etc. Doesn't turn my fingers black or green like brass polish - instead it softens & exfoliates skin of my hands! Just be sure to get ALL the salt off - I use dish detergent & water to wash item & dry it well.