Metal Q and A

1. Why does copper metal turn my skin green?

Copper can react with perspiration on your skin to form copper sulfate (the green discoloration). Loose-fitting jewelry is far less likely to discolor your skin than a tight-fitting piece because the copper needs sweat to react. To reduce the reaction with your skin, remove copper jewelry before taking a shower or washing your hands, and limit the time that the jewelry is worn. You may also use Jewelry Shield to keep the copper from coming in contact with your skin.

2. Will gunmetal or brass metal turn my skin green?

Brass, bronze and gunmetal's are copper alloys, so they could potentially discolor your skin, but they are not as likely to as pure copper is. To avoid this reaction, use Jewelry Shield to coat the clasp.

3. Why did my metal tarnish?

Tarnish is a layer of corrosion that develops on many metals, especially silver. Airborne chemicals including sulfur are the main cause of tarnish. Jewelry exposed to open air tarnishes more quickly than jewelry stored in a closed, acid-free container. Metals in more humid climates will tarnish more quickly then others. Tarnished metal has a dull, darkened appearance.

4. How can I prevent my metal from tarnishing? offers many options that can help reduce tarnishing of your metal. Metal stored in stack jars, storage boxes or plastic bags will help reduce tarnishing. If you use a zip-top plastic bag, remove as much of the air from the bag as possible before sealing it tightly.

5. If my metal gets tarnished what can I polish it with?

If your metal begins to tarnish, polishing cloths and Pro Polish pads can be used to wipe them clean. These products will also help to reduce further tarnishing.

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Fusion Beads Inc, Beads, Seattle, WA