Your health is important, and you need to do everything possible to protect it. In terms of jewelry, protecting your body means choosing to wear jewelry that is free of nickel and also free of lead.
Notably, nickel is not only a big cause of allergies, but it’s also a known carcinogen, which means that you must limit your exposure to nickel at all costs. It would be best if you also avoided jewelry because lead is a very toxic heavy metal known to cause chronic and even terminal illnesses. Therefore, it is recommended that you only wear lead-free jewelry.
The good news is that there is jewelry that is both nickel and lead-free. In this article, we’ll look at these kinds of jewelry, specifically, whether they’d get tarnished or look as good as new for years to come.
Does lead and nickel-free jewelry tarnish? And why?
Whether the lead and nickel-free jewelry tarnish or not is a factor that’s dependent on the make-up of the base metal, gold, for example, is resistant to tarnishing, while silver isn’t. however, because of rhodium plating, there won’t be any tarnishing.
That said, it’s important to keep in mind that tarnishing has nothing to do with the nickel in the material, meaning that if the material contains zero nickel but has copper, it will still tarnish. There are a few instances, however, when the nickel is added to improve the other metal’s tarnish or corrosion resistance.
So, if you are looking for nickel-free jewelry, you will be happy to know that these pieces often look and feel fabulous, and they are an excellent option for persons with sensitive skin.
However, whether a metal used in jewelry has nickel or is nickel-free is a completely different matter, and it has no bearing on the oxidation properties of the metal – and whether there will be tarnishing or not.
The other important thing to consider is the fact that nickel-free doesn’t always refer to a metallic piece. So, nickel-free jewelry may look and feel like metal when it’s made of medical-grade plastic or silicone.
On the other hand, you have lead-free jewelry, which is not only safe and good to your body but also tarnish-free. An example of tarnish-free jewelry is pewter and what stands out from this jewelry is the fact that it doesn’t have any lead, a feature that means that the jewelry will not tarnish.
Therefore, it means that if you have lead and nickel-free jewelry, there is a high likelihood of the jewelry not tarnishing. But this is not cast on stone.
Does nickel-free jewelry change color? And why?
Yes, and no. Some of the nickel-free jewelry will tarnish. The reason for this is that even in the absence of nickel, the jewelry may contain other metals that react with moisture and air, causing some color changes.
Sterling silver, for example, maybe free of nickel, but it would still get tarnished because the copper added to the pure silver reacts with the air or moisture to form copper oxide, which has a green tinge.
Copper and brass jewelry would also tarnish without any nickel present because of the copper.
There are other versions of nickel-free metals that will not tarnish. This often happens because the metals are inert and non-reactive, and you won’t have to worry about tarnishing.
These metals include titanium, stainless steel, and niobium.
Does nickel-free jewelry turn green? And why?
Whether nickel-free jewelry turns the skin green or not is something to do with the metal composition of the jewelry more than the absence of nickel. Think of the green tinge as a result of copper’s oxidation and not because of nickel or its absence. Some nickel-free jewelry may cause green discoloration on your skin if it’s made of a copper alloy. In some tines, this alloy lacks nickel, but the mere presence of copper means that there will be a green discoloration after some time.
Interestingly, some metals with nickel would turn your skin green. So, to reduce the risk of green discoloration on your skin, you might want to avoid jewelry with copper or nickel.
Generally, most alloys used in jewelry making will turn the skin green unless they are rhodium plated and replated regularly.
When buying jewelry, you should be careful about the materials that the jewelry is made of. For maximum safety, choose jewelry that is free of nickel and lead. Doing this means that you will avoid or reduce the risk of allergies, especially if you have sensitive skin.
Lead-free jewelry is also an excellent option for you because you won’t have to worry about lead’s toxicity, and subsequently, lead poisoning – this manifests as fatigue, tremors, prolonged diarrhea, and nervousness when it makes contact with your lips.
And at higher levels of exposure, lead could result in adverse consequences like attacks to the brain and the central nervous system leading to convulsions, comas, and even death.
Regarding the lead and nickel-free varieties of jewelry causing tarnishing, you should know that there is a low risk of such pieces causing tarnishing; unless they have metals that would get easily oxidized like copper.
Tiger is a fashion&jewelry lover. He is also a fashion jewelry manufacturer that help thousands of small business to grow and also do business with some big fashion jewelry brands. He is a truly metal expert and he will share some information you are looking for.