The market is full of all kinds of Sterling silver. Silver has been used for thousands of years by jewelry and accessories makers. It is no coincidence that silver jewelry dating to 2500 BC was found in excavations in Greece, which shows the ancient relationship that humanity has with the processing of the noble metal.  There is no doubt that silver is a timeless and modern metal and is used worldwide in the manufacture of jewelry and accessories. Unquestionably it is a tensile metal that combines not only beauty but also durability.

But the question remains and it seems to concern many of us. How am I supposed to know which silver jewelry to buy?  There are thousands or even millions of silver jewelry on the market.  Are all silvers the same or not? What is the difference between sterling silver Jewelry and 925 silver Jewelry?

Let’s take a first look if there are any differences between Sterling silver and 925 Silver.

What is sterling silver?

Sterling silver is an alloy metal made from 92.5% silver and 7.5% alloy. An alloy is essentially a mixture of two or more elements, usually copper, nickel, or zinc. However, the percentages between silver and alloy may differ in some countries, such as France, where the percentage of silver reaches 95%. However, I would say that 92.5% is the most common in the worldwide market.

What is 925 Silver

When we talk about 925 silver we talk about Sterling Silver. Both are made from the same alloy of silver, with the only major difference being the name. So there’s no difference.

Why other metals are mixed in silver. Why not 100% silver?

The reason sterling silver requires a mixture of other metals like copper or zinc is that naturally, pure silver is soft, especially for jewelry makers. Adding other metals to the silver increases the hardness, making it more suitable and durable for use in jewelry. The only downside to this noble metal is that it can tarnish relatively quickly. That is why it is important to frequently clean our jewelry with special fabrics and store it in places with the least humidity.

The purity of silver lands on a rating system, based on 1,000. Pure silver gets a 999 rating. For silver metal to be classified as sterling silver or 925, it must meet at least a 92.5 purity, AKA 925. So, as you can see: 925 silver is sterling silver. 

925 Silver = 92.5 purity

Silver metal that contains less than 92.5% silver is not 925. It is very important to keep in mind when buying sterling silver jewelry, especially from Chinese online stores.

For example, if they sell a silver necklace that costs less than 10$, then take for granted that it is not silver but polished alloy. It is not worth buying a low-quality metal alloy disguised as a silver coating, which eventually wears out very easily, looks very cheap, and could even lead to skin irritation.

Inexpensive metals like nickel or brass can cause infections, especially with earrings. You should always remember this: cheap metals can irritate resulting in skin irritation.        

Mermaid Tail necklace
Mermaid Tail necklace

You buy sterling silver because is hypoallergenic, high quality, elegant and safe for your skin.

How to Identify Sterling Silver 

Certified sterling silver jewelry will be stamped or marked with the word “Sterling” or “925” or “S925“. Sometimes you may see some hallmarks labeled with “STG” “SS” or “STER,”. It depends on the country of origin or the manufacturer. All those labels are authentic hallmarks of sterling silver.  Just remember that no matter what kind of label you see,  Sterling silver and 925 silver are exactly the same things. 

Tips about Buying Sterling Silver Jewelry

When you’re looking in the market for a piece of jewelry for you or someone you love, you should know some tips that will help you buy your favorite piece of jewelry safely and with a guarantee. Let’s take a look at some.

  1. Compare the quality and the price at the stores that promote the same jewelry. Never compare jewelry you like with Chinese imitations. JO&LYD guarantees jewelry quality.
  2. Read all the details about the product. If the information you ask for is not enough contact the store.
  3. If you buy 925 Silver with pearls make sure that the pearls are natural, not imitation. If they do not specify it in the product description then by 90% it is imitation. 
  4. Make sure you read about the store’s refund and return policy before you buy.
  5. Ask for recommendations from friends who may have already bought from the store.
  6. Get information about the metals in the alloy. If you have skin that is sensitive to metal allergies,  silver may contain nickel. At JO&LYD there is a variety of nickel Free & Lead-Free jewelry.

Conclusion

There is no difference between Sterling Silver and 925 Silver. We talk about the same thing. You may see some hallmarks labeled with “STG” “SS” “STER,” or “S925“. It depends on the country of origin or the manufacturer. They have absolutely no difference.

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