Silver jewelry: maintenance

Although silver in its original form is a beautiful material, unfortunately it has one major disadvantage: oxidation. This causes a black and/or green discoloration of the material. This can be used deliberately in a design, but often it is more of an annoyance.


Hydrogen sulfide, popularly known as sulfur, is a substance present in the air. When silver comes into contact with this, a chemical reaction occurs, forming a black layer on the material.

This process is accelerated by excessive exposure and humidity. It is therefore not advisable to leave silver jewelry in the sun or in places with high humidity such as the bathroom.

Silver makes it difficult to make friends, in the sense that there are still a number of factors that can speed up this process. Think of cosmetics, perfume, deodorant, seawater, chlorine, cleaning products,..

Does this mean you can no longer use perfume and co? No, but try to remember that you apply these before you wear the jewel.

Jumping into the sea or the pool is not the best idea, same for showering, taking a bath, brushing... In short, everything that is related to moisture.

Even perspiration can have an effect on silver. For example, when you consume alcohol, take certain medications, ... these can also affect the material.

Are there solutions for this?

Of course there are!

First of all, the preservation of silver jewelry. When you are not wearing the jewels, it is key to keep them very well! Things often go wrong here. The jewels quickly end up on the bedside table after a night out and despite the New Year's resolutions, they remain there. When you buy a jewel you will receive a storage box, this is not only a nice package. Make it a habit to store the jewel in it every time. Each jewel separately, so that they cannot damage each other. It's going to save you a lot of annoyances! If you want to go all hardcore, pack the box in a zip pocket. Not the most elegant appearance but definitely airtight.

My silver jewelry didn't get in the box, and yes, it's time, they're black. What now?

There are products available on the market with which you can brush silver in the form of cloths, baths…

Don't try everything on your own initiative, don't try to sand yourself, for example, that's a perfection application for problems. Contact me or an authorized jeweler for advice or a brushing.

Are you distraught for a moment and in doubt about silver? There are still possibilities. Namely rhodium-plating and gold plating.

In rhodium-plating, a small layer of rhodium is applied.

When gold plating, a small layer of 18Kt gold is applied, which you have in different layers.

I'll go deeper into this in the blog articles on rhodium-plating and gold plating.

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published