Have you been wondering what the term sterling silver means? Are there similarities or differences between pure silver and 925 sterling silver? What is the quality and durability of sterling silver chains and sterling silver pendants compared with jewelry made from other materials? All these and more questions will be answered in this write-up; just read till the end.
What is Sterling Silver?
Sterling silver is the compound or alloy created from the addition of copper, zinc, nickel or other metal to pure silver. Pure silver is 99 percent pure silver metal, which is characteristically soft and cannot be used in that state for a jewelry metal.
Consequently, another metal is added to the pure silver to make 925 sterling silver meaning that only 92.5 percent of the compound is pure silver while the remaining 7.5 percent is copper or another type of metal. 925 sterling silver is the silver that is best suited for making your necklaces, rings, and earrings. As a result, sterling silver chain and sterling silver pendants are products of 925 sterling silver.
Comparison between Pure Silver and 925 Sterling Silver
Pure silver is the 99% pure silver while 925 sterling silver is the compound formed by adding other metal to pure silver to make it stronger for making jewelry. These two types of silver have more value than silver-plated or stainless steel jewelry.
Like gold, 925 sterling silver is used in fine jewelry to make many types of necklaces, bracelets, earring, rings, pendants, chains and many other jewelry accessories. It is beautiful, gorgeous, and capable of holding up different kinds of dazzling designs.
Signs of Fake 925 Sterling Silver
When buying a sterling silver chain and sterling silver pendants, here are the signs to tell that they are made from a material other than 925 sterling silver.
- Test your sterling silver chain and sterling silver pendants with a magnet; if it is attracted to a magnet; it is fake.
- Rub the sterling silver chain and sterling silver pendants you are buying with a piece of cloth; if a black mark appears, it is 925 sterling silver.
- Test with nitric acid; if it shows a green color, it is 925 sterling silver while a cream color and other colors signify a fake silver.
How to Maintain 925 Sterling Silver in Good Shape and Make It Last Longer
- Keep your 925 sterling silver dry even after exposure to water.
- Keep it away from chemical and other contaminants such as chlorine, sulfur, etc. present in the swimming pool, hot springs, eggs, mayonnaise, etc.
- Allow the lotion you use to dry before wearing your 925 sterling silver because of the chemical composition in the cream, which can affect the silver’s luster.
- Remove your 925 before doing household chores.
- Clean tarnished a sterling silver chain or sterling silver pendants with home-made baking soda paste (a mixture of water and baking soda). Apply the paste on the jewelry and use an old toothbrush to brush off the tarnish.