Buying good quality jewelry is an important investment for you, you would want the full value of your fine jewelry. And nothing feels worse than knowing you spent your money on a fake silver jewelry that tarnishes easily and gives you skin allergies. You can easily avoid this hassle by learning how to tell if your sterling silver is real or a fake. Here are 7 ways on how to tell if your 925 silver is real: -
1. Observe The Sterling Silver Stamp Markings
One of the most efficient ways to easy test the genuity of your 92.5 silver is by checking the quality stamp label on the silver jewelry. Whenever silver jewelry is sold, there is always a quality stamp mark to indicate the type of jewelry metal.
If your jewelry features a tiny inscription that says “ster” or “sterling”, then it means the jewelry contains at least 92.5% or close to pure silver content. Pure silver sterling jewelry would often feature stamp marks such as “92.5”, “925”, and “.925”.
Apart from checking the jewelry stamp markings, there are other methods you can test if your sterling silver is real.
2. Conduct the Magnet Test
If you have bought and worn silver costume jewelry before, you will notice that not every shiny and silver looking jewelry is made of fine silver or real sterling silver. Using a strong magnet is a swift and reliable way to check the quality of your silver 925 jewelry.
Bring the magnet close to the silver object. If the jewelry reacts strongly to the magnet, then it is silver plated over another base metal. True sterling silver however should not have any affect towards the magnet due to its high amount of silver alloy.
3. Your Senses (Smell, See, Touch)
If you don’t have time to consult a professional reputable jeweler, there is actually another way you can test the quality of your sterling silver jewelry: through your senses.
Real sterling silver and 99.9 pure silver have no smell. However, depending on the concentration of the other metal alloy it is combined with, it may emit other scents. On the other hand, silver plated items may therefore smell of sulfur or another base metal, indicating that it is not made of real sterling silver.
Fine silver and sterling silver have a more shiny and lustrous appearance. You can tell whether something is made of silver or silver plated by looking at it. The jewelry you intend to buy can be silver plated if the colors are distorted and it looks to have metal layers.
- The Touch:
99.9 pure silver is generally soft and rather malleable. Therefore, if you come across jewelry that does not have a smooth texture and feels bumpy, you could be dealing with silver plated jewelry. Real sterling jewelry would not have a scratchy texture to the metal.
4. Bleach & Polish Test
Thanks to its resistance to corrosion and oxidation, silver is often used in jewelry making. When you buy fine jewelry, you don’t have to worry about replacing it constantly. Using bleach and a polishing cloth test can help you prevent buying any fake silver jewelry.
Real sterling silver oxidizes and will turn black after placing a drop of bleach on it. However, you can easily remove the black marks with a polishing soft white cloth. On the other hand, if the jewelry does not tarnish when it comes into contact with the bleach drop, then it is definitely silver plated. No matter how you try to polish the costume jewelry, its silver plating will never return to its original luster.
5. The Nitric Acid Test
In some cases, you can also use nitric acid to test the genuinity of your sterling silver. However, it is important for you to wear protective gloves and goggles to protect your eyes and hands before conducting the acid test.
To do so, put a drop of nitric acid on the jewelry pieces. If the jewelry turns creamy white, then it is made of pure silver or 925 silver. On the other hand, if the jewelry turns green, then it is a silver plated jewelry.
6. The Ice Test
Another way to test the authenticity of sterling silver is by using an ice cube. Did you know that silver has the highest thermal conductivity and has the ability to melt ice at a faster rate?
Before conducting the ice test you need to make sure that the jewelry is not too warm, so rinse the jewelry pieces in cold water if necessary. Next, place the silver jewelry on a piece of ice and observe if the ice cube melts instantly. When you compare it with other metals, you will notice that pure and sterling silver both melt ice the fastest.
7. The Weight Test
Checking the weight of your jewelry is another way you can determine the authenticity of your silver sterling jewelry. Most metals are less dense than silver. The diameter and thickness of a metal is determined by its weight.
Use your hands or a gram scale to compare the weight between two pieces of silver jewelry. If the silver jewelry weighs less, it is highly pure sterling silver because it contains lighter silver alloys. If the jewelry is heavier, then it is silver plated due to the lack of lightweight silver alloys and the heaviness of the other metal alloys.
Now that you have learned all about how to tell real silver 925 jewelry, we hope that this guide will help you identify and test silver sterling jewelry better in the future. If you’re looking for a high quality choice jewelry brand to expandyour collection, Eleganzia Jewelry provides a range of sterling silver jewelry that might suit your interest.