What Is Sterling Silver?
Silver is one of the
most popular metals used in jewelry. Sterling silver is the standard
for jewelry. Silver is relatively softer than other metals like
gold or platinum requiring it to be combined with other metals to
improve the hardness and durability. The standard for Sterling Silver
in the USA is 92.5% silver and 7.5% other metal, most often being
copper. The higher quality jewelry pieces are stamped with 925.
Sterling Silver is used in rings, earrings, bracelets, necklaces,
body jewelry, cuff links and many other items. Sterling silver jewelry
can be polished to get the beautiful white shine or it can be gold
plated, silver plated or plated with rhodium. One of the most popular
plating materials is rhodium. Rhodium is extremely hard, provides
an excellent protective surface and gives a beautiful, smooth, shinny
surface providing the look of platinum. Silver jewelry has a tendency
to tarnish due to coming in contact with chemicals in the air. Silver
Jewelry which is plated with rhodium is often referred to as anti-tarnish
How Do I Care For My Sterling
Your sterling silver
jewelry pieces will tarnish over time when coming in contact with
moisture and certain chemicals in the air. This is a natural reaction.
Some of the causes of tarnishing are chlorine in swimming pools,
salt water and perspiration. There are a few easy steps you can
take to keep your jewelry looking great. Cleaning your jewelry often
is very important. Clean your jewelry pieces using warm water, mild
dish washing detergent and a soft bristle toothbrush. Carefully
wipe your jewelry with a soft silver polishing cloth before storing
it. Avoid spraying with beauty products such as hair spray, cosmetics
and perfumes as these may cause damage and discoloration. When your
jewelry is not being worn, it should be stored in plastic zip lock
bags. Air is the cause of jewelry tarnish and discoloring, therefore
the more you keep it sealed, the less tarnish. Properly caring for
your sterling silver will give years of enjoyment.