How to Care for Chopsticks
Okay, you have these chopstick beauties, but how do you care for them? After all, these quick little friends are your pride and joy, right? You want to treat them with the respect and love they deserve. So let's dive in.
Chopsticks are typically made of wood, bamboo, plastic or metal. By their nature they are durable, fun (and sometimes challenging!) eating utensils that will last for years with proper care.
While we all might enjoy a long-hot bath, your chopsticks do not. Moisture is all powerful, and in time will find its way into wood and bamboo, making it swell and warp, which may crack and chip their beautiful artful finish. So it it best to never have your chopsticks soaking in water.
Typical chopsticks (not those super-hero dishwasher safe kinds) should be washed by hand. Using gentle soap and cloth, wash your sticks after use. If you need to loosen dried food, soak for as little time as needed. Avoid using harsh scrubbers to prevent scratching fine finishes.
Not all chopsticks are created equal.
Some are dishwasher safe. If they are, they will tolerate a little more abuse. Metal and plastic chopsticks are usually dishwasher safe, but only specially finished wood and bamboo chopsticks are strong enough for the amount of water, heat and powerful detergents of a dishwasher.
All woods, bamboo, and paint eventually fades and discolors from exposure to sunlight, and that can happen to your wonderful chopsticks too. Safest is to store chopsticks in a drawer away from the sun's powerful rays. Or if you keep them in a cup on the kitchen counter, tuck them out of the way of windows.
Microwaves and Fire
Nope. Nada. No. The horrors....
What if the Finish Has a Crack or Chip?
Eventually all good things must come to an end.
If your chopsticks have a crack or chip in the finish, it is time to retire them to another purpose (other than as an eating utensil). They had a good life, celebrate the joy they brought you. Maybe they can become a plant stake or a hair stick. But don't use them for eating.
Chopsticks have pointy ends. Like with scissors, no running with your quick little fellows. Likewise, keep a parents' eye on the kids when they are using chopsticks.
Live Long and Prosper...
With simple, practical care almost all chopsticks will last for years of daily use. Treat them with love and respect and they will reward you with their beauty. Enjoy.