If you have been lucky enough to receive recognition in the form of a plaque or trophy, congratulations!
There are a number of formats and materials that your trophy may come in including wood, brass, glass, plastic, and a collection of metals—so to keep it looking good, you need to care for it!
Here are some quick tips to keep your trophy looking as shiny and new as the day you received it:
- Preventative Care
Keep your collection of awards and trophies in a space that doesn’t collect dust, dirt, and grime readily.
The best place to preserve it is in a trophy case that is enclosed and separated from the particulate matter of the everyday world, but a dedicated shelving unit will also do the trick.
Keep the trophies out of reach of pets and small children that cannot contribute to their destruction!
- Dust (often!)
Make sure to include your trophies and plaques in your regular dusting regime.
Remove them from their shelving or casing, use a gentle bristled duster and brush dust down and away from the surface. Make sure to dust shelving as well to prevent build up!
The cleaning process is going to be specific to the material of your trophy or plaque. Many can be wiped down with a gentle soap and water solution on a rag or wash cloth. Make sure not to apply too much pressure as to remove the finish of your award.
Additional cleaning procedures can be taken to address wood, metal, and glass.
For wood, try to find a wood polish or cleaner that is free of harsh chemicals that can strip the finish or varnish from the plaque. Apply a minimal amount to a cloth and gently wipe the surface going with the grain.
It is always best to test the cleaner on the posterior side of the plaque first to ensure it doesn’t ruin the surface.
For glass or Plexiglas, most household glass cleaners should do the trick without much fuss. Spray the glass cleaner on the surface of the trophy and use softener newspaper to thoroughly wipe it off. An alternative to this is white vinegar cut with water. Newspaper helps to clean glass as it doesn’t leave any streaks or material behind like paper towel.
When caring for metal, a polish may be best to keep it shiny. Make sure to detect the type of metal first and ask at your local hardware store what the best method for polishing that material would be.