Knowing Your Metals
WHAT IS STERLING SILVER?
Pure silver (also referred to as fine silver) is relatively soft, very flexible, and easily damaged so it is commonly combined with other metals to produce a more durable product. The most popular of these alloys is sterling silver, which is made up of 92.5 percent silver and 7.5 percent copper. Although the 7.5 percent non-silver portion of sterling can consist of any metal, centuries of experimentation have shown copper to be its best match, improving the metal's hardness and durability without affecting its beautiful color. The small amount of copper added to sterling has very little effect on the metal's value. Instead, the price of the silver item is affected by the labor involved in making the item, the skill of the artisan, and the sophistication of the design.
WHAT IS RHODIUM?
A member of the platinum group, rhodium is a shiny, white metal that is highly reflective, durable, and expensive. It is often used as a hardening agent for platinum. In jewelry, it is plated on other metals to increase shine and eliminate tarnishing.
Gold has an extraordinary legacy with unique qualities. As a lasting element found naturally in a distinctive yellow color, gold is resistant to rust, tarnish, and corrosion. Although gold is very strong, it is also the most pliable of all precious metals.
Pure gold is too soft for everyday wear, so it is alloyed with a mixture of metals like silver, copper, nickel, and zinc to give it strength and durability. “Karatage”, symbolized by a number followed by "k", indicates purity or how much of the metal in a piece of jewelry is gold. Karatage is expressed in 24ths, making 24k gold, 100% gold.
Natural gold and color-saturated alloys are what give yellow gold jewelry its rich shine. The alloys most commonly used are copper with a red hue and silver featuring a green hue. A proficient mixture of copper, silver and pure gold gives this precious metal its signature warmth.
The beautiful pink hue of rose gold jewelry is created by using a copper alloy. The overall percentages of metal alloys is the same for rose gold as it is for yellow or white but there is just a different mixture in what alloys are used.
WHAT IS CUBIC ZIRCONIA?
Cubic zirconia (commonly referred to as CZ) is similar to a diamond with its brilliance and crystal clarity, but it is a man-made crystalline material that is colorless, hard, and flawless. It looks so much like a diamond that it is an affordable alternative to diamonds.
Our GEMOUR COLLECTION jewelry features one of the highest quality Cubic Zirconia diamond simulant that employs techniques that bring every stone to the closest diamond brilliance possible.
Some pieces featured on GEMOUR.com utilizes high-quality Cubic Zirconia, which is set to the highest standards:
"Cubic Zirconia is in a class of its own. With all the characteristics of a genuine diamond, a single look at the exceptional cut and sheer brilliance of our stones is enough to convince even the most critical eye. Each of our zirconia stones shines with the quality and craftsmanship you can expect from our brand.
Made exclusively in Austria, the finest raw materials are first carefully sourced, before being cut and polished to perfection by our qualified technicians."
WHAT IS CRYSTAL?
Some of our featured designers and brands also feature crystal stones, which are created sometimes using quartz, minerals and sand. Some are lead base glass crystal.
WHAT IS CREATED RUBY AND SAPPHIRE?
The synthetic precious stone is chemically no different from its natural counterpart, however, is grown in a lab setting using pressure, heat and the stone's essential minerals. Created stones are growing in popularity, having a favorable environmental record over mining for natural stones. However, the raw uniqueness of certain natural elements may not be found in the lab grown counterpart.
Cleaning & Care
WILL STERLING SILVER TARNISH?
Chemically, silver is not very reactive—it does not react with oxygen or water at ordinary temperatures, meaning it does not tarnish easily. It's the other metals, primarily copper, that make sterling silver to tarnish. The copper reacts to moisture and sulfur in the air, causing the sterling silver tarnish. Our rhodium plated jewelry provides maximum durability.
HOW DO I CLEAN MY JEWELRY?
Clean cubic zirconia rings and jewelry with warm, soapy water and a soft cosmetic brush. When you are done cleaning your jewelry make sure to dry CZ stones fully to keep their brilliance and shine.
WHEN SHOULD I NOT WEAR MY JEWELRY?
Remove any cubic zirconia jewelry when doing any rigorous activity such as housework, working out, swimming, showering, etc.
HOW SHOULD I STORE MY JEWELRY?
It is a good idea to keep your jewelry box organized as this will have many benefits. Store cubic zirconia jewelry in a fabric-lined box for protection and keep jewelry separated to prevent scratching and other damage.