Why choose Stainless Steel?
I chose stainless steel for its appeal as well as its properties. It’s an excellent alternative for wearers with allergies and/or sensitivities to base metals such as copper or brass and won’t fade or chip over time.
Stainless steel has excellent strength properties in that it retains its shape and wear longer than those created out of carbon steel and softer base metals. It’s also resistant to rust, oxidation and discoloration and comes in an attractive muted grey color (much akin to a vintage pewter) with either a shiny or matte finish – a perfect compliment to my hand made papers and polymer clay.
Stainless steel jewelry is made of a steel alloy that contains chromium. The chromium creates a very thin chromium-oxide layer on the surface of the metal which prevents it from rusting.
Other metals are added to the alloy to give the steel other properties, such as strength and malleability. Nickel is added to strengthen the protective oxide layer, however in smaller quantities than 316L.
304 stainless steel is the most popular grade of stainless steel. It is 18-20% chromium, 8-10.5% nickel, 0.08% carbon, plus iron and the trace elements listed above and is a popular choice for Jewelry.Jewelry Care Guidelines:
As a rule of thumb... your jewelry should be the last thing to put on and the first thing to take off.
- Pour some warm water in a small bowl and add some mild dish washing soap.
- Dip a soft, lint-free cloth in the soapy water then gently wipe the stainless steel jewelry with the damp cloth until the piece is clean.
- When cleaning it, rub the item along its polish lines.
- Rinse the remaining soap off your stainless steel jewelry.
- Dry the jewelry well with a clean towel and then leave your pieces to air dry.