Natural Brass Cleaner

You know I love me some brass! (Apparently, I "love me" a lot of things. As in, I think I use that phrase too much... oh well...)

ANYWHO. A couple of weekends ago while thrifting when I should have been packing, I found this dirty little (brass) bird.

Patina is the best, but this was just looking grungy. I knew I could probably buy some brass cleaner to do the job, but I seemed to remember there were some great natural cleaners for brass. A little internet research proved this to be the case.

Along with ketchup (catsup?), lemon juice is allegedly a great brass cleaner. Time to put it to the test!

Not to shabby eh? I only needed paper towels and lemon juice from the bottle to get this all spiffed up. For the more persistant spots, I let the lemon juice sit for a few minutes or scrubbed extra hard with the paper towel. After the bird dish looked good-n-shiny, I cleaned off the excess lemon juice with a little dish soap.

You can see that it's not a perfect method, but I like that the lemon juice didn't brass things up to a garish point. A little bit of tarnish keeps things interesting. I especially like that the discoloration in the etching on the bird stayed put.

Easy new way to clean brass - check!

Do you swear by any natural cleaning solutions? Please share! They're so awesome!