3 sure ways to spot fake silver jewelry.
Before we look into ways to spot fake silver jewelry, let’s first learn a bit more about genuine silver jewelry.
Silver jewelry is considered to be genuine if it contains 92.5% (or more) of pure silver. There are 2 kinds of genuine silver jewelry sold in the market – sterling silver 925 and fine silver (widely used especially for hill tribe handmade jewelry). Fine silver contains higher percentage of pure silver compared to sterling silver 925. Silver on its own is too soft and requires other metal to hold stable, so it is commonly incorporated with other metals such as copper.
Although silver is relatively cheaper as opposed to other metals like gold for example, you will still often find fake silver jewelry sold in the market.
For instance, it is not uncommon to see silver plated jewelry sold as real silver jewelry. These jewelry pieces contain only a minimal layer of silver and will eventually corrode because only the surface of the jewelry is covered with real silver and the rest of the item is made up of nickel alloy.
So, the next time you are buying your silver jewelry, use these 3 simple ways to check if the pieces you are buying are genuine.
1. White cloth
It is normal for silver to oxidize as that is the nature of silver especially when it is on display and unworn. If you have a white cloth, use it to rub on the silver jewelry. You should be able to see some oxidization stain on the white cloth and see that the jewelry looks shinier.
2. Magnet test
Silver does not respond to magnets. So if you put a magnet close to silver jewelry and it sticks strongly, that means the jewelry is not genuine silver. It is likely a plated item made mainly with other metals which are responsive to magnets.
3. Price point
There’s a saying: Good thing no cheap, Cheap thing no good.
This is especially true when it comes to genuine silver jewelry. If it is too cheap, it is probably fake.
Although silver is still relatively cheaper compared to gold or rhodium, it is however a precious metal. When it comes to silver jewelry making, it would require a composition of at least 92.5% of pure silver to qualify as a high-grade silver jewelry. Combine the price of silver to the workmanship in jewelry making, you will find the price of genuine silver jewelry to be relatively higher as opposed to other cheaper metals such as brass, copper or bronze.
So, the next time you come across a bracelet that is marketed as genuine silver at a price of less than 10 USD, chances are it is fake and made of cheap alloy.