Sterling silver is a beautiful and versatile precious metal. The cool neutral tone of sterling silver jewelry goes with just about everything, sealing the winning look for any outfit, whether it’s professional, casual, or formal wear.
Unlike plated silver, sterling silver doesn’t wear down over time as it’s over 90% pure silver compounded with alloys (usually copper) for durability. Silver is extremely hard to use in its natural state while sterling silver retains the quality of the metal but with addition of copper and/or steel to make it easier to craft into jewelry.
- Determine Authenticity and Quality
To determine if the sterling silver is authentic, look for the hallmark. Most of the sterling silver pieces are marked with a small engraving of 925, .925 or 92.5. If it has this engraving, it is one of the best ways to know if it is real. However, if it says anything ‘’plated’’ on it, then run away. It means that is not real sterling silver. It simply means that it is coated in silver for appearance and that the piece itself is made of nickel, copper or other metal. Throughout the years of wear, the silver coating will eventually tarnish. Testing the clasps and laying the chains flat to check for any kinks or bends in the metal are also a great way to find out if it is authentic sterling silver jewelry or not. Sterling silver should always look shiny and show no signs of tarnish.
- Purchase it in a trusted store
You found a really cheap sterling silver in a corner. In fact, it is almost 30% off its usually price. If you want to be sure, before you purchase such piece, research about the store and it’s authenticity. Most of the time, these stores say it is sterling silver, but in fact it isn’t. Make sure you only purchase from a trusted store where they only sell authentic pieces that are worth the value for the money you paid for.
- When buying online, research
It is tricky to buy online since you can’t really see the actual piece but instead, trust that it is authentic and the sellers say what they say it is. Before you shell out some cash, make sure you research and look for key points to verify authenticity of the store. This means that the store should have fairly positive reviews, have an options for money-back and returns as well as have all the necessary information laid out for their customers. They must also be quick to reply to any questions you may have regarding their company and product. Furthermore, when you have bought the item, make sure you track the item to where it is going.