Whether you collect them as a hobby, or if you plan to resell them for a profit, it’s important that you follow some basic safeguards to protect vintage magazines and books from damage. Because they are made of paper, these items are susceptible to damage when improperly stored. And once a vintage magazine or book is damaged, it loses a significant amount of value. Here are five tips to protect your vintage magazines and books from damage.
#1) Plastic Protectors
One of the easiest ways to protect vintage magazines and books from damage is to store them in a plastic protector. These lightweight plastic “sleeves” slide around the book or magazine, creating an impenetrable barrier of protection between the paper and the outside elements. You can buy plastic protectors in sets of 30 for as little as $5, making this an effective and inexpensive way to protect your collectables.
#2) Store in Dark Area
Prolonged exposure to sunlight can significantly damage vintage magazines and books. The sun’s ultraviolet (UV) light will bleach the ink, causing it to fade and the paper to weaken. This doesn’t happen overnight. Rather, it usually takes months or years of exposure. You can protect your vintage magazines and books from this phenomenon by storing them in a dark area where there’s little or no sunlight.
#3) Check the Humidity
In addition to storing your vintage magazines and books in a dark area, you should also check the humidity level. Humidity refers to moisture vapor in the air. When the humid is high, the surrounding air is saturated with an excessive amount of moisture, which can damage the pages. So, check the humidity of the area in which your vintage magazines and books are stored, aiming for a relative humidity of 40% to 50%.
#4) Use Caution When Handling
There’s nothing wrong with reading your vintage magazines and books, but you should use caution when handling them. If your hands are oily, it can damage the pages. So, clean your hands before touching any vintage magazine or book. You can even go one step further by wearing gloves when handling them.
#5) Archival Protection
Finally, consider using an archival protection solution for your vintage magazines and books. Archival solutions are designed to offer a maximum level of protection for long-term storage. You can often find these products available for sale at arts and crafts stores.