What is jewelry? Your jewelry might be one of your most prized and valuable possessions. It is often the most valuable item in a person’s possession. Jewelry is a catch-all term for items made from rare and expensive materials like rare stones, metals, or other precious items such as rubies, sapphires, gold, silver, jade, or pearl. Sometimes they’re accessories, like bracelets or rings, or maybe even other items like watches.
Why is jewelry so popular?
There are lots of items that may be considered jewelry. They are just accessories that are made to be worn and displayed. So why are they so valued? Aside from its rarity, of course. For millennia, people have worn and treasured jewelry, so much so that jewelry is still very valuable. When one thinks of value, they may use it to mean something of tangible value, like money, or something of personal value, like a favorite toy. Jewelry is one of the only things that is both of these things– they add to your personal wealth, while also being of personal significance to the owner.
That’s just one of the reasons why people buy valuable jewelry. The most precious jewelry are accessories built to last lifetimes, become more valuable over time, and act as sturdy heirlooms to be inherited. If you find yourself a good one, they serve as good investments. There are owners of jewelry who can make a decent living over well-maintained jewelry. In modern society, you can buy jewelry from all sorts of places: You can even buy jewelry online!
On the topic of valuable accessories, there is one metal that has been a staple for a long time and valued as a material used in jewelry. It’s one of the three precious metals that are commonly used but still highly prized.
Silver and jewelry
Silver is a metal that is grey in color but has a shiny luster. Mined deep in the earth’s core, it has been used by jewelers for hundreds of years and is still being made into jewelry today. This shiny metal is very malleable in its purest state and serves many aesthetic purposes. It is known for its understated elegance, being versatile enough to be paired with many outfits, as well as be shaped into many different forms and items.
Qualities of silver
Like gold, silver isn’t used in its purest form. Pure silver is too soft to be used in jewelry, where consistent wear and tear are a considerable possibility. Instead, silver is mixed with a harder metal to achieve the durability necessary for it to function as an accessory. The purest kind of silver you can get is sterling or 925 silver, a silver alloy that is around 92.5 percent silver in purity.
There are also significant downsides to silver as a material. Even with the added durability, silver jewelry must be taken care of very carefully: they’re easy to tarnish and lose its luster.
Silver and tarnishing
Silver’s big problem when it comes to longevity is how easily it tarnishes, like other shiny, precious metals. What is tarnishing? Tarnishing is when a thin film of corrosion that can form over the surface of your silver bracelets, rings, necklaces, and other items. This thin film results in a murky or dark exterior that is unappealing to look at.
Your silver becomes duller with tarnishing. It’s actually a chemical reaction that results from exposure to air: it reacts with hydrogen sulfide or sulfur in the atmosphere. In some cases, with lower-purity silver, the other metal in the alloy also reacts to oxygen.
How to prevent tarnishing
So what do you do when this happens? There are a number of precautions you can take to avoid speeding up the tarnishing. For one, limiting exposure to air is a surefire way of protecting it against tarnishing. Simply reducing the number of times you wear or touch your jewelry can make a big impact. Your skin contains oils and sweat with alkaline levels that can react to your silver jewelry.
Silver aficionados will know and tell you that storing jewelry while not in use is also of key importance. It’s wise to store your jewelry in a sealed or airtight container. While most jewelry boxes are not airtight, it does help facilitate a slower tarnishing process.
If worse comes to worst and the silver ends up tarnishing, cleaning your jewelry is also of importance. There are many silver cleaning products that you can find in some stores, and there are other DIY cleaning methods that you can try. It’s important to do further research.
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