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Protecting Your Memories: 5 Factors Damaging Your Photos

As photographs serve as memories of precious moments, it is essential to protect them from damage. However, there are several factors that can harm your photographs, causing them to deteriorate over time. This article will discuss five such factors and how to avoid them.

1. Sunlight 

Exposure to sunlight is one of the most damaging factors when it comes to photographs. Over time, the harsh rays of the sun can cause the colours in the photograph to fade, making them look dull. To avoid this, you should display your photographs in a well-ventilated area that is not exposed to direct sunlight. If you have to display your photographs in an area with direct sunlight, you should use UV-blocking glass or acrylic to protect them.

2. Humidity

Humidity can cause your photos to warp, curl, or stick together, leading to permanent damage. Therefore, it is crucial to store your photos in a dry, cool, and well-ventilated area. Avoid storing them in basements, attics, or garages, as these areas are prone to fluctuations in temperature and humidity. Instead, store them in acid-free paper or plastic sleeves and place them in storage boxes.

3. Dust and Dirt 

Dust and dirt are one of the most common enemies of photographs. Not only can they cause discolouration and fading, but they can also cause scratches and abrasions, damaging the photo beyond repair. To protect your photos, you should use a soft, clean cloth to gently wipe away any dirt or dust.

For extra protection, you can display your photos in a frame with a glass cover, or even a photograph album with plastic sleeves. Additionally, you should store your photos in a cool, dry, and dark place to reduce the amount of dust and dirt that accumulates over time.

4. Improper Handling

Improper handling of photographs can cause damage to the image, such as creasing, smudging, or fading. To prevent this from happening, always use clean hands when handling photographs and avoid touching the image surface. Photo albums should also be handled with care, and the images should not be bent or folded.

If the photograph must be moved, it should be handled on the edges or corners and never on the face of the photo. If storing the photograph, use acid-free paper or plastic sleeves and place them in storage boxes. Additionally, avoid exposing the photographs to extreme temperatures, humidity, and direct sunlight.

5. Chemicals

Exposure to chemicals can cause significant damage to your photographs. Chemicals like bleach, ammonia, and vinegar can cause discolouration or even dissolve the photo’s emulsion layer. Therefore, it is crucial to keep your photographs away from any chemicals, including cleaning products or even fumes from freshly painted walls. Also, avoid using adhesive tapes or glues that can damage the photo’s surface.

Conclusion

Photographs are irreplaceable memories that require proper care and protection. By avoiding sunlight, humidity, dust, improper handling, and chemicals, you can ensure that your photographs remain in good condition for years to come.

It is essential to store your photographs in a dry, cool, and well-ventilated area, clean them gently with a soft, lint-free cloth, and handle them with clean, dry hands or gloves. By following these simple steps, you can ensure that your photographs remain in pristine condition and continue to bring joy and memories for generations to come.

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