All About Copper
COPPER CARE TIPS AND FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT CELTIC COPPER JEWELRY
What is best method for cleaning copper jewelry?
Copper jewelry can be cleaned like most other items in your jewelry box. Most anti-tarnish cloths and rouge-cloths work interchangeably for cleaning copper jewelry. We recommend polishing cloths designed for sterling silver and fine jewelry when caring for copper.
Sunshine polishing cloths are what we use to buff our jewelry and add luster to our finished work. Sunshine Polishing Cloths last an amazingly long time and give a superior shine compared to other tarnish cloth products we have tried in our shop. The Sunshine Polishing Cloth is our number one choice for cleaning copper jewelry.
Copper Cleaning Tips from the Kitchen:
Cleaning Jewelry with Baking Soda:
The fine abrasive properties of Baking Soda and Baking Powder are effective at exfoliating dirt and tarnish from copper jewelry. Pour a tablespoon of baking soda into the palm of one hand and rub the jewelry piece into the powder with the other hand using circular downward motions.
To clean copper chains and bead strands, place a handkerchief in your hand, add baking soda, then repeatedly draw the item through your gently closed hand. The baking soda with turn grey as the tarnish is removed and you copper jewelry brightens.
Non-toxic Copper Cleaning Dip:
To remove tarnish from copper, cover and soak copper jewelry in vinegar (white vinegar, apple cider vinegar, catsup or BBQ-sauce) Then rinse and dry. The acids in these condiments act as a natural tarnish remover. (Beware that anti-tarnish liquids like acidic vinegar can dull soft stones.) Finish the cleaning by rubbing jewelry with a soft cloth or handkerchief.
Does your copper jewelry have a tarnish-resistant coating?
Some of our copper chains and copper jewelry is finished with a light, lacquer coating to protect the piece from tarnish before it reaches the customer. Once worn against the skin the lacquer wears away and the pure, uncoated metal is exposed and comes in direct contact with the skin.
While chains are generally treated with a coat of protection, clasps and other findings are usually are not. The raw copper of clasps and connector rings can tarnish more quickly than the lacquered chain. Cleaning your jewelry, especially with a Sunshine polishing cloth will restore a bright even luster.
How can I remove lacquer from copper jewelry and get down to the bare metal?
People who wear copper jewelry often do so for the health benefits associated with this metallic mineral. The lacquer used to keep copper chains and other copper items shiny during production wears away fairly quickly with regular daily use.
We recommend using mild abrasives to remove lacquer from copper items when bare metal is preferred. Be mindful that abrasives will permanently change the appearance of mirror finishes and hasten the removal of copper-plating from base metal findings.
Fine steel wool is an excellent abrasive choice for removing old finishes from copper jewelry and other metals. Use fine steel wool as a dry scrub then give the surface a vigorous rubbing with a Sunshine polishing cloth.
How pure is the copper used to make Celtic Copper Jewelry?
Our copper jewelry, findings and chains are made from pure solid, 99.9% pure copper* like the metal used in electrical wire. (*Unless otherwise noted, as with our copper-plated lobster clasp and hypoallergenic steel earring findings.)
Will copper jewelry turn my skin green?
The short answer is maybe. The longer answer is that the degree to which copper oxidizes and turns green is dependent moisture and temperature. It happens to some people more often than others.
Copper can create a greenish blue patina of copper sulfate fairly quickly with exposure to sweat and the warmth of the body. The color is non-toxic and washes off with soap and water. The color is non-staining.
Is copper safe for people with metal sensitivity?
Nickel is often the culprit with metal sensitivity, not copper. Many of our customers who previously could only wear gold and fine silver without allergic reaction, now routinely wear our jewelry and copper earrings in comfort. Sterling Silver is an alloy of 92.5% pure silver and 7.5% other metal. Copper is unalloyed metal and virtually 100% pure.
Changes in health and allergy resistance can occur over the course of a lifetime. We have spoken with customers who report they could previously wear brass and copper and now experience irritation when wearing copper, particularly when wearing heavy copper jewelry. Copper sensitivity is rare, although it does occur.
How does copper relieve pain?
Copper is an energetically conductive metal with a reputation as a reliable remedy for arthritis, inflammation and stiff joints. We are uncertain how to explain the health benefits of wearing copper jewelry. Think of wearing copper as increasing your conductivity of positive energy.
Can I wear copper jewelry in the shower and pool?
Simply wearing your jewelry can help it stay clean and in-the-pink!. Sitting in a jewelry box can oxidize jewelry but soap and water helps remove dirt and oil. Wear it in the shower; soap up your bracelet chain when washing your hands.
Solid copper jewelry is wash-and-wear safe. Be aware that chlorine, cleaners and chemicals used in pools and hot tubs can damage the delicate finish of softer gemstones such as turquoise.
How long have people been wearing copper jewelry?
The utilitarian and ornamental use of copper was known to some of the oldest civilizations on record. Copper is named for the Isle of Cypress in the Mediterranean and the healing attributes of copper were renowned as the sacred gift the Goddess Venus. Those who wear copper jewelry often describe the experience as having a subtle, energizing effect that is grounding, harmonizing and uplifting.