Updated: Jun 27
At Demetrini Jewellery, our most important desire is to design the best, affordable fashion jewellery pieces that make you look and feel exactly how you want to look and feel! You want to stand out, you want to look great and feel that your choice of handmade costume jewellery enhances all your best and finest features.
Although our handmade costume jewellery made in London can be beautiful and gorgeously designed, it is different to what we refer to as 'Fine Jewellery'. Unlike fine jewellery that is commonly made with materials such as gold, diamonds and a selection of gemstones and will come at a higher cost, our affordable handmade costume fashion jewellery is made with more affordable and common materials such as semi-precious rocks & stones, plated metals, beads made of lampwork glass, wood or resin and you will even find hand sewn intricate components made by some very talented makers.
These more affordable materials are used as alternatives to create similar looks to fine jewellery sold on the market without having to spend a fortune on real gold, diamonds and other precious stones and metals. Realistically, any fashion costume jewellery items that you purchase are not made to last forever in most cases, depending on the material of course, but you can lessen the tarnish of the metals used and signs of wear if you follow advice on how to care for and store your gorgeous handmade jewellery pieces properly.
Why does Costume Jewellery tarnish?
You will be aware that the reality is that all metal parts of contemporary fashion costume jewellery whether they be fashion necklaces, boho bracelets or long, dangle earrings are probably going to tarnish over time. The non metal components will essentially for the most part remain the same. However, metal components need a little more love and attention over time as some metals tarnish faster than others. Why is this? The reason is that with the passing of time, your handmade costume jewellery inevitably comes into contact with air, acids, oils on the skin, moisture on the body and from the air. These all react with the metals used to make the fashion jewellery and this causes tarnishing.
You will have noticed from pieces that you have purchased over the years from various suppliers that certain metals have this tendency to react. You may have left Sterling Silver or Silver Plated items out of their storage boxes and noticed that over time the Silver has darkened somewhat. The reason for this is that the metal has reacted to the moisture and sulphur in the surrounding air. This happens to gold plated 18K items too and gold-filled jewelry too, although gold filled jewelry does tend to last much longer than its gold plated counterparts. It's true that they will show signs of wear later on, but some prefer to purchase gold filled items because of their ability to ward off tarnishing for longer.
The next question is; So what factors determine how long it will take for my fashion jewellery to tarnish. The factors determining this are as follows; the composition of your own skin, the way that you care for the pieces, where you store the items, taking into consideration the air around the area they are stored in, and the materials that were used to make them in the first place.
Some Jewellery turns skin green, Why?
Many have had the experience of wearing a ring only to have taken it off and left with green staining on the skin. Have you experienced this? What causes the green staining around the finger? It happens because the acids on your skin react with the metal causing oxidisation. The reality is that this happening to you specifically depends on your own body chemistry, and we are all very unique. One person's body chemistry is completely different to another's. If it has happened to you, you were probably concerned and wondered if this was actually unsafe. No need to worry. It's not considered harmful to you. This is something that tends to happen when we wear pieces made from copper. It can also happen when wearing silver and gold metals.
Some tips on how to keep your jewellery from tarnishing
1. Keep the jewellery dry
You must, must, must avoid to the best of your ability allowing your fashion jewellery to come into contact with moisture or liquids. If you ignore this factor, your jewellery will tarnish at a faster rate. What does this include? Don't use lotions on your skin before wearing jewellery. Don't wash your hands with rings on, don't spray perfume directly on the area where the jewellery is being worn, and although difficult, don't sweat while wearing jewellery. Yes, I know this is almost impossible. How do you tell your body not to sweat or your skin not to expel oils and moisture? Unfortunately the oils on your skin can wear down silver and gold plating on metals over time. If you notice that your jewellery has become wet or moist, please, please, please dry them immediately.
2. Store it correctly
You cannot expect your fashion jewellery items to last if you fail to store them correctly. We've already stated how exposure to moisture in the air will, over time, causes tarnishing of costume jewellery, so it's important to store them properly. When you receive your handmade jewellery from https://www.demetrini.com/ in a cloth pouch or bag, you should keep it in that. This protects jewellery in the first instance from the sun and obviously from scratches and damage.
If you want to add extra protection in the form of correct storage, it is advisable to store jewellery in a bag, preferably in a Tarnish Prevention Bag (which you can purchase on our website using this link)
Before sealing the bag ensure that you get rid of as much air as possible. The reason you need to do this is because the lack of air will avoid the metal oxidising.
An extra addition to your jewellery bags, pouches and jewellery boxes are what are known on the market as 'Anti-tarnish strips'. These super absorbent pieces of paper will absorb all undesirables in the surrounding air that cause your jewellery to tarnish over time. You'll need to replace the strips every 6 months, normally. They're usually sold in packs of 25 or 50. We don't currently sell them on www.demetrini.com but may do so in future (watch this space).
3. Jewellery Protectant Spray or Shield
Available on the market are a variety of sprays that can protect metals used in fashion jewellery from tarnishing and keep your pieces bright and looking as new as the day you purchased them. Some can also protect you from allergies like irritation, rashes and hives. Some are 100% hypoallergenic and cruelty-free. There are various available.
Some clients like to use polishing cloths for silver or gold which can do wonders for a tired looking piece of jewellery. A good old wipe with one of these can do wonders for the look of your jewellery. Brings back the shine and brightness in just a few seconds.
On www.demetrini.com we currently sell Silver Polishing Cloths
Fantastic little cloths for giving your sterling silver or plated silver a clean to bring back the metal's shine and brightness.
Some types of jewellery tarnish more quickly than others. Here are some examples:
Silver jewellery: Silver is a popular material for jewellery, but it is also prone to tarnishing. This is because silver reacts with sulphur compounds in the air, which causes it to turn black or brown.
2. Copper jewellery: Like silver, copper also reacts with air and moisture to form a layer of tarnish. This layer can range in colour from brown to green, depending on the level of oxidation.
3. Brass jewelry: Brass is an alloy of copper and zinc, and it is also prone to tarnishing. The level of tarnish can vary depending on the composition of the brass and the surrounding environment.
4. Gold-plated jewelry: Gold-plated jewelry is made by coating a base metal (such as copper or brass) with a thin layer of gold. Over time, this layer of gold can wear away, exposing the base metal and causing it to tarnish.
In general, any jewelry made from metal or which uses metal fittings is susceptible to tarnishing. However, some materials, such as stainless steel, titanium, and platinum, are more resistant to tarnishing than others. If you want to avoid tarnishing altogether, you may want to consider jewelry made from these materials. We have a few items on demetrini.com which use, for example, glass beads and sterling silver fitting such as Floral Lampwork Earrings which are longer lasting and require a quick polish using our Silver Polishing Cloth from time to time.
So, after all this info, you've got a bit of work to do protecting your jewellery. Of course it's another thing to think about. But hey, no pain, no gain, right?
If you want your jewellery to last for as long as possible, you've got to look after it and follow the advice to keep it in tip top condition. You shouldn't ignore these tips on how to look after those fabulous pieces of jewellery that you love and treasure. On every shop item on demetrini.com we give you some advice on how to look after your gorgeous handmade UK fashion jewellery pieces so that they last you as long as possible. An example can be found on the following link Faceted-red-glass-earrings Click on the Product Care Tab for some advice on how to look after your jewellery.
If you need more information or just have more questions, please feel free to email us at email@example.com
We're always here to help our readers and customers with answering any questions you may have. Meanwhile, have fun wearing your most treasured or recently purchased pieces of jewellery!