Are you about to purchase brass jewelry and you’re wondering if it’s a good idea? Well, let’s find out.
Is brass hypoallergenic?
First, let’s get into what brass is. Brass is an alloy of copper and zinc. The quantity of each metal will vary based on the type of brass it is. It is also common practice to find lead and nickel, even making up the composition of a particular brass alloy.
The reason for this color transference is because the metal oxidizes as it reacts with your sweat. When that happens, it creates copper chelates. Copper, when it is pure, it doesn’t get absorbed by the skin.
However, the copper chelates can. The green color is the copper that hasn’t gotten absorbed. The good thing is that the stain is not permanent; you just need to wash your hands for the color to come off. The best way to avoid this color transference is by adding brass jewelry lacquered. That creates a shiny barrier between your skin and the brass.
Let’s look at the merits and demerits of getting brass jewelry
Pros of brass jewelry
It is popular: in the jewelry world, brass is one of the most used metal alloys. That’s because it is readily available as compared to other metals or alloys in the market. If you want brass jewelry, you’ll have no trouble getting them as its possible just about everywhere.
It has a vintage look: Vintage is back and here to stay, and the trend people want to wear accessories that match this era. That’s why you’ll find that brass is a popular choice for most people still in the market today.
It is overall safe to wear: When the brass you get is purely made of copper and zinc, you don’t have to worry about getting allergies. Nowadays, countries are banning lead and nickel because of the allergenic abilities. It is thus likely what you find in your local market does not contain these metals, and it is safe to wear.
Finished brass won’t tarnish: When you get finished brass, you don’t have to worry about it tarnishing. It also requires minimal cleaning, so your items will be looking newer for a longer time.
Easy to clean: getting your brass back to looking new is not an uphill task. With just a damp cloth and a bit of soap, you’re able to get it looking brand new. One of the cleaning hacks that you can use on brass is ketchup. It works because the mild acid in tomatoes is able to remove dirt and tarnish from brass without causing it damage.
Brass can resemble gold: to the untrained eye, there are kinds of brass that pass for gold. You can thus have a look you’re looking for but for a fraction of the price. The brass jewelry is able to make a statement in whatever setting you’re in, matching up to the more expensive metals.
Cons of brass jewelry
Brass is not hypoallergenic: as mentioned, if there is the presence of nickel or lead, then it’s likely to cause allergies on those with sensitive skin. The issue is that you don’t always know the amount of these allergenic metals is in the brass jewelry for you to know if you get an allergic reaction. That means you have to do a skin test. Wear the item for a short while. If there is a reaction, then you know you’ll have to opt-out of buying brass.
It changes color: Just as with other metals, brass does change color over time. It might not be immediate; it will give you a couple of years of services. You just have to keep cleaning it for it to remain as new as possible.
Unfinished brass tarnishes: There is a variety of brass jewelry that comes unfinished. That means there is no barrier between the metal and the external environment. For that reason, you have to care more about and clean unfinished brass jewelry. You also want to avoid exposing it to water, whether in the shower, pool, or ocean, unnecessarily to maintain its newness.
Is gold plated brass hypoallergenic?
Brass jewelry Available on Amazon-Please Click the Picture to Check PriceThere are indeed people allergic to gold, which in itself presents a challenge. However, if you’re not allergic to gold, you can go for gold plated brass jewelry. Do keep in mind that after a while, the gold layer will come off, exposing the brass underneath.
Is rhodium-plated brass hypoallergenic?
Rhodium is a hypoallergenic metal, and it gets used to strengthen other metals. Again, bear in mind that over time, in this case, longer than gold or silver, it will tarnish and expose the brass underneath. If you’re allergenic, then you’ll have to settle for something else.
Is silver-plated brass hypoallergenic?
People are generally not allergic to silver, as long as it is sterling silver or branded 925. You can, therefore, get silver-plated brass, which is hypoallergenic. That is until the point where it tarnishes, and the brass underneath gets exposed.
Note: if you’re allergic to brass, it is best to steer clear of anything made of brass. You don’t want to have a piece of jewelry that you wear for a limited time before you have to give it up.
How to care for brass jewelry?
There are various ways to care for brass, depending on if it is unfinished or finished. When it is finished, you only need soap and water to get the layer of dirt and other elements from it. When it is unfinished, one of the methods we have mentioned is using ketchup or tomato juice to clean it.
The other tip to consider is using lemon juice, salt, and water. If you have some tarnished parts, you can take a slice of lemon, dip it in some salt and rub slowly over the tarnished part.
The last one you can use is vinegar, salt, and flour. Again, form a paste and then rub it over the jewelry. After, let it sit for 10 minutes before rinsing.
Overall, you want to keep the brass way from a moist environment and store it in a clean and dry place.
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