.925 sterling silver also contains copper, which tarnishes when exposed to oxygen, sweat and lotions. Everyone "turns" silver eventually as a natural result of body chemistry, but some people may "turn" their silver dark quicker than others. This discoloration can range from a light yellow/gold to a dark black/brown color. To avoid tarnish, keep your jewelry away from cosmetics, hair products, salt water and anything that may contain sulfur. Be sure not to submerge your silver jewelry in water and always remove it when bathing, swimming, hot tubbing, or washing dishes by hand. Handmade jewelry needs to be treated with care for a long life.
To remove tarnish from your silver jewelry I recommend using a silver polishing cloth which you can purchase from your local craft or hobby shop, or online. Almost all of my pieces have patina, which is a chemical derived from sulphur and I use it to create the black, velvety recessed parts. I seal patinated areas with a museum wax but with time, it will wear away. Keep any piece containing patina away from water, salt water, cosmetics, and hair products as contact with any of these can cause corrosion of the patina. This corrosion will give the patina a green color that can only be repaired by removing the original patina, applying a fresh coat and re-polishing. I do offer this service on all of my pieces, so please get in touch with me if you feel that your jewelry needs a little spa day.