Sterling silver is a precious metal that is highly appreciated. It serves many purposes, but one that stands out is jewellery making. Most jewellery manufacturers prefer using sterling silver in making all kinds of jewellery. That is because of the wonderful properties that are associated with sterling silver.
Properties of Sterling Silver
Sterling silver is associated with the following distinguishable properties.
Sterling silver is a very strong metal. It is said to be way stronger than gold metal. Sterling silver derives its strength from copper metal. Pure silver itself is very soft and jewellery that is obtained from pure silver tends to break since pure silver is not strong.
Therefore, to make silver strong, 92.5% of it is amalgamated with 7.5% of copper alloy. The copper alloy is too minimal but is enough to strengthen the silver and to make it as hard as possible. Hence, sterling silver is a really strong metal.
This element of sterling silver comes about as a result of the mix between pure silver and copper. The hardness of copper strengthens and hardens the silver making it very durable. That is why sterling silver when properly cared for and maintained can last you a lifetime.
Designer silver jewellery is made from sterling silver. The designer pieces of jewellery are associated with great strength, and their ability to stand the test of time. The reason for their durability and strength is sterling silver.
Sterling silver is non-ferrous. That means it cannot be attracted to a magnet. That is because it is a pure metal, and does not contain any ferrous metals within.
Therefore, if you buy sterling silver jewellery and test for its magnetic abilities, then discover it is attracted to the magnet, you should not that is not pure silver. It may just be silver plated.
Malleability implies the ability of the silver to bend or be moulded or reshaped to form something else. Sterling silver is malleable. It is easy to obtain great designs and shapes of jewellery from sterling silver because of this great feature.
You can utilize this property to determine if the designer sterling jewellery you have is genuine. Just try bending the jewellery and observe it bends, or is rigid. If it does not bend, then just know the jewellery you have is not genuine silver.
- Shiny and bright
Sterling silver is a shiny and very attractive metal. Its shininess is what makes it very elegant and dazzling. However, exposure of such metal to heat, moisture, and oxygen leads to its oxidation, which results in it getting tarnished. Also, wearing the metal and exposing it to scratch and dent can tarnish it.
Luckily, the tarnish can easily be removed through proper cleaning with soap and other cleaning reagents suggested by your jeweller. After cleaning the sterling silver metal, you can wipe it using a clean soft cloth, and then polish it using the jewellery polishing cloth, to regain its shininess.
It is said that sterling silver has no scent. When you put pure sterling jewellery close to your nose and smell it for a moment, you cannot smell a thing. However, if you own a silver piece that is smelly, know that silver piece is fake.
- Easy to clean and maintain
Sterling silver pieces of jewellery are easy to clean and maintain. As long as you are minimizing their exposure to water, sunlight, body oils and lotion, and other harmful chemicals such as chlorine and sulphur, then they are good.
Also, you can just clean them using warm water with soap, and then wipe them dry. Practice storing them in the jewellery box singly to avoid them scratching themselves.
Sterling silver has great features. Knowing the features can be beneficial in knowing how to tell the authentic from the fake silver. Also, being knowledgeable of the features enables you to know how to care and maintain for them.