Finding that perfect jewelry article, especially a sterling silver ring, is a daunting task. And, finding the ‘ONE,’ and realizing that it is making your finger turn green, is just a heartbreak, isn’t it? Well, it kind of is, but it doesn’t have to be if you know the reason behind it and what you can do to avoid it. Sterling silver has been used for thousands of years in making jewelry, ornaments, currency, apparel, trophies and medals, and many more things that are kept as prized possessions by the people who own them. Silver is a precious metal but it is challenging to mold it into anything, and even if one manages to do it somehow, the molded article is likely to bend easily under light force, which is not what we want after all those efforts. To make silver more rigid, copper is added into it, which forms the most excellent form of silver, known as 925 sterling silver all around the world. It contains 92.5% silver and 7.5% copper by volume, which gives silver the rigidity it requires to hold its shape when molded into jewelry or any other article.
Sterling Silver: Boon Or Bane?
Now, there are always two sides of a coin, which is also the case here. The copper, while giving the rigidity and strength, also tarnishes the jewelry when it comes in contact with moisture. It is either this tarnishing that is making your fingers turn green, or it is happening because your skin is sensitive to copper, which is present in sterling silver in very minute quantities. Does this mean that you can never wear a sterling silver ring or other jewelry made with it? Not at all, because there many measures that you can take to prevent those green finger stains which are listed below, followed by methods to remove those nasty green marks if they have already happened.
1. Protect Your Jewelry From Moisture
Sterling silver contains some copper, as we mentioned before, which can come in contact with moisture and make your jewelry tarnished. This tarnishing effect may cause your finger turn green, which is the reason you should avoid wearing jewelry in environments with more moisture than usual. Some instances where you should avoid wearing sterling silver jewelry are swimming pools, sauna and steam baths, while cleaning around, while washing clothes/utensils, etc. If your sterling silver jewelry comes in contact with moisture, make sure you wipe it completely dry so that no moisture is left in the difficult-to-reach areas. Do this, and your jewelry will remain as shiny as new for decades to come.
2. Wear high-quality jewelry
Always wear high-quality jewelry, no matter if it is sterling silver, gold, or platinum, it should be 100% real without any other metal mixed, unless mentioned otherwise. To do this, you should always buy your jewelry from trusted retailers like GSJ, KAY, Pandora, Zales, etc. Even if you are buying from a local jeweler, but only if you have full confidence in them, and look for the hallmark of every jewelry item that you buy. All sterling silver jewelry articles will have ‘925’ stamped on them, which ensures 100% authenticity.
3. Try clear nail polish or jeweler’s shield
If you are allergic to copper, both the methods mentioned above will not help, because even the best quality sterling silver will contain copper. So, this is where you use the coating method. Try clear nail polish of buy jeweler’s shield from the market, which is made for the sole purpose of stopping such reactions. Apply a layer on the inside of your sterling silver ring and let it dry for about half an hour. If you are using clear nail polish, it might last for 4-6 days, and if you are using the jeweler’s shield, it will last for about two months with regular usage and about three months with less frequent usage. This method can work for any metal that you may be allergic to.
Cure For Green Finger Stains
1. Makeup remover
This is probably the best methods out there to tackle with green-black colored marks on your fingers because of jewelry. Just pour some on a cotton pad and wipe away the stains. These stains are not very stubborn and are usually seen within the first few days of happening, which makes it easier to remove them. If the stains seem stubborn, repeat 2-3 times, and it should work. Wash your hands after the process, dry them, and use one of the preventive methods mentioned above before wearing the jewelry again.
3. Nail polish remover
A nail-polish remover is not very different than the makeup remover, and neither is its application. Just make sure you use the one without any acetone if you have sensitive skin because it will only do the opposite of what you want. Use this method if the first one fails, or is not as effective.
2. Rubbing alcohol
Use rubbing alcohol in the same way as the makeup remover. This method is a better one because it has a better effect on the stains, but it is also more harsh on the skin. So, use it only if the above methods don’t work.
Your sterling silver jewelry needs some care, and so does your skin, especially if it is sensitive to copper. Most people’s skin does not react copper and is only seeing the green marks because of too much moisture around the jewelry item. Just make sure your sterling silver jewelry is well protected and maintained or read ‘Jewelry Care Info’ to know more on how to clean and maintain your sterling silver jewelry. Combined with that, the above points will definitely help you steer clear of the green finger stains and make your jewelry shine brightly for years on.