How to tell if Jewelry is Real

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How to tell if Jewelry is Real

People have craved jewelry for as long as history goes. Due to exponential growth in population and the limited supply of precious metals, fake jewelry is introduced to scam people into losing their hard-earned money. A common person cannot distinguish between the real and fake ornaments by looking at them or via the labels, which are now printed on the fake ones. Fortunately, some methods can help you segregate real jewelry from fake jewelry.

Real Gold

Gold is one of the most liked metals in the world. Its shine and the color is what makes it peculiar among other metals like Silver. Gold has a bright yellow color. Two centuries ago, it was hard to replicate the color onto other materials. Also, it was not until the middle of the 19th century that Gold Plating was introduced commercially. Its luster, ductility, density, and melting point were unmatched. Also, being a 'native' element in the Earth's crust t has a high demand. By international standards, any metal alloy that consists of less than 41.7% gold or '10 karats of gold' as called in modern language, cannot be labeled as gold. With advancements in technology, manufacturers have started producing fake jewelry with almost the same visual characteristics. Still, you can distinguish the real jewelry from the fake one if you know the 'Real Gold' inert characteristics.

Characteristics of the element

The unique characteristics of gold are its bright yellow color and its peculiar shine. Most professionals can separate real gold from fake gold just by their color and shine. But modern technology has made it difficult for a common person. Gold is a highly ductile material, which means it can be beaten until it becomes a thin layer without breaking. Then it can be bent and shaped as one wants. In this way, the originality of the gold can be determined but after destroying its shape. Gold is a dense yet soft material and has a melting point of 1065 Degree Centigrade.

Real Silver

Silver in another beautiful metal used abundantly in the jewelry making. Although it is way cheaper than gold, its fake versions are also readily available in the market. You may wonder how to tell if the jewelry is real Silver. First of all, you can check the label on the jewelry. It can be 800, 900, or 925, which means the percentage of Silver in this ornament is 80%, 90%, and 92.5%. Silver that contains 92.5% pure silver and 7.5% copper is traditionally called 'Sterling Silver' and is of good quality.

Argentum 

Argentum is Silver having a greater quantity of silver metal in it. Argentum contain 93.5% silver, 5.5% Copper and 1% Germanium. Sterling Silver is easily tarnished when the copper (which is in higher proportion) comes in contact with moisture and air for too long. In this regard, Argentum is better than traditional Silver as it is less prone to the environment.

At Home

Going to a professional for the jewelry tests can be expensive and not for everyone. At your own home, you can perform several testing techniques to identify the originality of your jewelry. The fakest jewelry is made up of plastics with the golden color layer on them, or some metal is plated with a thin gold layer. But one can still examine them and based on the color, shine, and weight. 

Nitric Acid droplet can be dropped onto the gold jewelry; if the jewelry seems to be reacting or changing colors, then it isn't real gold as the 'Real Gold' doesn't react with Nitric Acid. For Silver, you can use bleach instead. If the Silver seems to be reacting with the bleach, then it is real Silver. Plastics and other materials don't react with bleach instantly. But, this method can deteriorate your Silver a little bit, so avoid doing it at large scale. 

Another method is using a magnet. Gold and Silver are both metals, and they both show attraction towards the magnet. So you can use any regular magnet in your home to check the metallic characteristics of the Gold and Silver. If the jewelry is attracted to the magnet, then it is metal; otherwise, it is not real jewelry.

Don't Damage the Jewelry.

As mentioned earlier, these methods are limited in practice and can only give you a glimpse of what you have bought. The methods like nitric acid and bleach can harm you and your jewelry. For the complete assurance, some other tests are to be performed to check not only the originality of your jewelry but also its grade. Performing these tests without supervision can damage your jewelry.

Get an Expert’s Opinion

It is always better to get an expert's opinion on whatever you are doing. More so when the thing in consideration is expensive like jewelry. You can always go to a jewelry store in your block and get instant help from them, or you can consult any of the online jewelry firms to provide you with their premium testing kits to check if your jewelry is real or fake. This way, by spending a few extra bucks, you can get the satisfaction of a lifetime.

Get Real Jewelry

It's always easier to go to an authentic jewelry shop to spend your money on attractive jewelry. There have been certain brands in the jewelry market that have made their names for their excellent products and unparalleled customer services. Most of the stores now give a lifetime claim with the jewelry then sell, through which the customers can claim an authentic test to satisfy themselves. Also, some well-known brands have introduced warranties for their products. Original products don't lose their charm or glare over time so, the brands who make real jewelry can confidently provide you with the replacement warranty.

You should always spend at your trusted stores as a layman cannot possibly tell if the jewelry is real or not. You can always learn to check if the jewelry is real or fake, but a trusted purchase is always satisfactory than testing later.

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  • Mary Hood