What is Sterling Silver?
Sterling silver is an alloy of silver containing 92.5% by weight of silver and 7.5% by weight of other metals, usually copper. The sterling silver standard has a minimum millesimal fineness of 925. Fine silver, for example 99.9% pure silver, is generally too soft for producing functional objects; therefore, the silver is usually alloyed with copper to give it strength while preserving the ductility and appearance of the precious metal.
Why does your skin turn green?
It's definitely not because your piece of jewelry is faulty or the quality is low, it could be your body's reaction to the silver. Remember that sterling silver is 7.5 percent copper and when it comes in contact with your skin, a chemical reaction occurs that causes the green color.
- Remove Jewelry During Tasks – When performing manual tasks, remove your jewelry to prevent physical damage or exposure to chemicals or cleaning fluids.
- Put Jewelry On After Applying Makeup – Cosmetics, hairspray, perfumes and lotion contain chemicals that can often damage jewelry. Putting jewelry on after applying these materials will limit exposure to jewelry and any potential damage.
- Contact Sports and Jewelry Don't Mix – Hard blows during sports can damage jewelry not to mention the people involved. All jewelry should be removed before play begins.
- Don't Wear Jewelry In Swimming Pools and Spas – Chlorinated water can react with the metals found in jewelry causing color changes and even structural damage. As a result it's a good idea to remove jewelry before entering the pool or spa.
Cleaning Your Jewelry
For those that wear jewelry regularly, keeping their jewelry clean and looking good requires regular effort. Here are some general guidelines that may help:
Remove Your Jewelry Before Bathing
Remove all jewelry before showering or cleaning. Soap can cause a film to form, making it appear dull and dingy. By preventing the formation of this film you immediately reduce the occasions of servicing.
Use Jewelry Polishing Cloths for Best Results
Polish silver with a jewelry polishing cloth for best results. You can use a svelte or an old diaper, but the professional cloths are the best. Use of tissue or paper towels can cause scratches because of fibers in these products.
Clean Your Jewelry With Care
Cleaning your own jewelry regularly can keep it looking good, but be careful. You can either purchase commercial cleaners from a jeweler or make a cleaning a solution yourself by adding a bit of dishwashing soap to to warm water . Rubbing alcohol can work wonders, but bleach can literally destroy jewelry so avoid it at all costs.
Use Warm Water to Clean Jewelry
Using warm water is the best bet when cleaning your own jewelry. How water can cause reaction with the cleaning fluids resulting in discoloration and Sterling Silver is especially susceptible to this problem. Should this occur, this problem can be remedied by buffing and the application of a tarnish remover.
Avoid Cleaning Damaged Jewelry
Never clean any jewelry that is damaged, cracked or broken, since the additional handling is likely to exacerbate or worsen the problem. If you find that a piece of jewelry is damaged, it should be set aside for repair as soon as possible.