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What causes Sterling Silver to tarnish?

First of all, it’s important to identify a few factors that will affect the rate of tarnish on silver. If you come into regular contact with chemicals, like going to the pool or using beauty products often, your silver is bound to tarnish faster. Some other factors include...

  • Water

Water generally doesn’t harm sterling silver, but there is a good chance that it could lead to tarnishing. So yes, you can shower with sterling silver but we would always recommend removing your jewellery if you are prone to tarnishing.

  • Exercise

As salt water causes corrosion in sterling silver then we generally advise you avoid wearing jewellery in activities that make you sweat. Or you can keep sweat away from earrings by carrying a towel and wiping away during workouts to avoid it getting near!

  • Environment

If you deal with chemicals or other solutions on a regular basis then it’s best to remove your silver before working with chemicals. For example, people working a lot with cosmetics or perfume might find themselves having to clean their silver jewelry more regularly. Also if you live in a city centre your jewellery might tarnish faster due to high level of pollution in the air. 


And then in some cases, it might just be your body chemicals. Some people just react with sterling silver and cause tarnishing much faster than others. Frustrating I know! But it shouldn’t put you off wearing sterling silver. Just wear earrings in lobe piercings, not cartilage, take your jewellery out at night and never wear in the shower.


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