Silver Quality Pure silver is soft and easily damaged. To give it more durability when creating jewelry, it is combined with copper, which makes it sterling silver. Sterling silver is 92.5% silver and 7.5% copper, but this alloy does not have an effect on the value of the metal. To ensure that the silver is high quality, jewelry should be stamped with a quality mark. According to federal law, the mark must be accompanied by a registered trademark or maker's mark. Acceptable marks for silver include: sterling, sterling silver, ster, .925.
Silver Care Silver should not come into contact with harsh household chemicals such as bleach, ammonia, or chlorine. To avoid scratches, store silver in a jewelry box or pouch. Silver tends to tarnish as it reacts with sulfur or hydrogen sulfide in the air. Cleaning and wearing it regularly will help maintain its shine and prevent this. Immediately upon noticing discoloration, use a polish made specifically for removing tarnish.