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Silver is too soft in its pure state for use in jewelry, and must be alloyed with other metals (typically copper).
We sell the following silver marks:
Silver containing 90 percent silver and 10 percent copper or other metal.
925 Sterling silver
Sterling silver contains 92.5 percent silver and 7.5 percent copper or other metal.
950 silver (Britannia)
950 Britannia silver contains 95 percent silver and 5 percent copper or other metal.
Will silver tarnish?
Yes, all silver jewelry will tarnish over time as silver reacts with sulfur or hydrogen sulfide in the ambient air. Although when worn on a regular basis, usually does not occur. Storage for a prolonged time causes silver jewelry to tarnish. Contact with rubber bands may cause tarnish – the sulfur in rubber is a catalyst for tarnish. Taking a medication that changes the acidity of your skin may also cause silver jewelry to tarnish.
Anyway, it is easy to prevent silver tarnish build-up. To clean your silver, use polishes formulated specifically to remove tarnish. You can find fine silver polishes, solutions, or cloths appropriate to remove tarnish at most hardware stores or specialty craft stores. Tarnish is most easily removed when it first becomes visible.
Will silver turn my skin green or black?
If you have a natural high acidity level in your skin, it is possible that your skin may ‘turn green or black’. That does not mean that there is a fault with the silver or the manufacture of the silver jewelry. The green is actually caused by oxidization, and all silver will oxidize.
A few people with especially moist skin could find that the sterling silver stains their skin green. This is due to the copper component of the silver alloy. When this occurs you may be able to minimize the problem by polishing the inside of jewelry piece daily for the first week or so. As the copper reacts and is polished away there is a gradual depletion of the copper near the surface available to react with the chemistry of the skin. When that copper is reduced the problem diminishes. Use an absorbent powder on skin areas that come into contact with the metal. Avoid the use of lotions or cosmetics near the jewelry.