If like me you love wearing Sterling Silver Jewellery, but don’t like the fact that it tarnishes quickly, find the quality can be very inconsistent or you are trying to be more eco conscious, then I have some exciting news!
In the last 12yrs a new type of Sterling Silver alloy has been developed which addresses these & some of the other problems often associated with Sterling Silver Jewellery.
While Traditional Sterling Silver is an alloy of Silver & copper, Argentium Sterling Silver is an alloy of Silver, Copper & Germanium. When Germanium is alloyed with Sterling Silver, it produces a type of Sterling Silver which has the following properties:
1. Longer Lasting Shine:
Due to the addition of Germanium, Argentium Sterling Silver has tarnish resistant properties which means, compared to traditional Sterling Silver it will not tarnish as quickly or as heavily.
If over time Argentium Silver does develop tarnish, it is comparatively much lighter & easier to clean or polish off than the heavy black tarnish than develops on traditional Sterling Silver Jewellery.
2. Eco Friendly:
When traditional Sterling Silver is heated or soldered using a flame torch, it can leave marks on the surface known as Firescale.
Firescale shows up on the surface of Silver as a grey shadow & can be extremely difficult to remove. To cover firescale, Silver jewellery is often Silver or Rhodium Plated to produce the illusion of a smooth, blemish free surface finish.
This plated surface however is quite thin & will wear off & need re-plating after a certain amount of wear.
In contrast, due the composition of Argentium, firescale does not generally occur on Argentium Silver unless it has been significantly over heated. Therefore Jewellery made from Argentium Silver doesn’t require plating which makes it a much more environmentally friendly precious metal alloy compared to Traditional Sterling Silver.
3. Brighter Colour:
Due it’s chemical composition, Argentium Sterling Silver has a brighter Silver colour than Traditional Sterling Silver, which gives it a lovely Silvery glow.
4. Responsible & Ethical:
Unlike traditional Sterling Silver, Argentium Sterling Silver guarantees the traceability of its raw silver which means you know where & how it’s been mined.
It is also produced using only recycled silver which means it has less impact on the environment.
Due to it’s composition & strict manufacture guidelines, Argentium Sterling Silver is a purer Silver alloy compared to traditional Sterling Silver. This is especially good news for people who have sensitive skin or those who have experienced a skin reaction when wearing traditional Sterling Silver.
So Where Can you Buy Argentium Sterling Silver Jewellery?
I’m proud to say that all pieces in the Melanie Hay Jewellery Range are made from Argentium Sterling Silver.
Some independent & chain store jewellery shops may carry also it but you might find their design range is still quite small.
So next time you are looking to purchase Silver Jewellery, where possible consider choosing Argentium Sterling Silver rather than traditional Sterling Silver.