How do I know if my jewel is sterling silver?
Try these tricks easily and quickly.
Sterling silver is one that in its composition is made up of 92.5% silver and 7.5% copper and/or other metals.
Why is it not 100% silver in its composition?
Pure silver, also known as fine silver, is very malleable and easy to damage, which is why it is generally combined with other types of metals to achieve a more durable product.
How can I tell if my jewel is silver or plated metal?
1. Look for a hallmark.
The hallmark by which sterling silver is generally identified is 925.
If only 925 appears on our jewel, our jewel may be made of silver, although due to multiple counterfeits that come from the Asian and Turkish markets in Spain, this stamp must be accompanied by the manufacturer’s stamp.
In other words, we will find the 925 sterling silver seal and that of the manufacturer or exporter in Spain, which is the one that guarantees that it has been verified by a laboratory.
2. Perform a chemical analysis.
If we do not find any stamp on our jewel indicating that it is made of silver, we can carry out a test made with a corrosive acid such as nitric acid.
This test is not recommended for domestic use, since when the acid comes into contact with the jewel and if we do not have previous experience, we can damage our jewel.
3. Magnet method.
This simple test can help us to know if our jewel is made of silver or not.
Silver is a paramagnetic element, that is, the magnetic effects have hardly any repercussions, so when a magnet is brought closer, it will not come close to the jewel. By bringing a magnet closer to our jewel, if it sticks we can intuit that it is not sterling silver, although this also depends on the other metals with which the alloy is made. Because it does not stick, it is not a 100% sure proof, although many people think so, but rather we can know that it is not made of steel.
4. Ice method:
If we place an ice cube on top of our jewel and it begins to melt, we can think that it is sterling silver. Silver is one of the great thermal conductors and we can verify a very evident change in the composition of the ice.
5. Clean the object with a cloth.
Silver if it is in a long exposure to the air or other chemicals can darken its natural color and be “blackened”. This is solved by passing a cloth over the object and rubbing gently. If our jewel begins to return to its natural color, we can intuit that it is sterling silver, on the contrary, if we do not get any color variation in the jewel, we can begin to suspect that it is not silver.
We hope that these simple tricks will help you to know if your jewel is made of 925 sterling silver!
The best way to check 100% if your jewel is 925 sterling silver is to go to a jewelery professional and buy 925 sterling silver products in your trusted jewelery store.