Chemical symbol: Pt
Atomic number: 78
People choose sterling silver for their wedding rings because of its high shine and relatively low price. Silver is a soft metal that is easily scratched or tarnished. As individuals we all have very different skin types which don't react in the same way to substances that it comes into contact with. The acids will vary in your skin which can affect the speed at which the silver will tarnish when it comes into contact with you. What you eat, drink or smoke, and perfumes, soaps, hairspray, cosmetics you use can affect your skins acidity levels. For this reason the way a silver ring ages depends a lot on the wearer. You may find that your silver ring will cause an instant reaction, turning the skin underneath black/purple. The black that can be seen is the sterling silver oxidising. If you have worn silver before without it tarnishing, it could be that it is imported silver which is different to UK silver or it is possible that the jewellery may have been plated or coated with something to prevent tarnishing. As a standard, we do not coat our silver, however in order to prevent this natural process from occurring, we can rhodium plate your rings free of charge which would protect it from the elements. Rhodium plating is used as a standard on all white gold to give it it's silvery white finish, as naturally white gold is in fact quite dull and yellowy. Rhodium is also hypoallergenic. Please request this in the notes field when placing your order.
Cleaning clothes for silver are readily available in larger supermarkets. If you have a silver ring, it's worth buying a 'silver cloth' and rubbing the ring gently every now and then. If your ring becomes more severely tarnished, regular silver cleaning fluid should be able to remove the stains.
Silver is a popular choice for wedding rings because it polishes to a beautiful mirror finish and has one of the whitest and most reflective surfaces of metals. Another reason why silver is a favourite choice for jewellery is that it costs less than other metals - it is more abundant in nature and is easy to shape. It is also incredibly malleable and ductile; it is one of the few metals that can be beaten into delicate thin sheets of leaf or pulled to make strong wire.
Silver's shine is what gave its name: (It was even named for its shine: Its chemical symbol 'Ag' is from the Latin 'argentum', which is in turn is from the Ancient Greek word 'arg?ntos' meaning 'white, shining'.)
There is a lot of silver mined every year, which is why it can be used in many industries other than jewellery - including dentistry, photography, medicine, electrical manufacturing and even in nuclear reactors. Even though it is important in so many different ways, man has used silver for decoration for thousands of years due to its unrivalled white metallic lustre and malleable nature. There is evidence to suggest that man learned to separate silver from lead as far back as 3000 B.C. Before the 1800s, possession of silver was limited to the very wealthy, but technological and economic developments from this time has led to silver being the popular - yet precious - commodity it is today.
The price of silver has been quite volatile over the last century, and can depend on industrial demands as well as other factors. As with all our metals, the price at which we sell silver is updated each week to reflect the current market value.