Maybe you are considering buying a loved one copper jewelry for the holidays or another upcoming celebratory event, or maybe you recently inherited copper jewelry from a deceased friend or relative and are wondering how long copper jewelry lasts.
When considering any jewelry purchase, you need to take into account both the price and quality of the piece, so we’ll answer your question about the longevity of copper jewelry and steps you can take to make your copper pieces shine a little longer.
How Long Does Copper Jewelry Last?
Copper jewelry is very durable and affordable, and it can last for many generations to come. Copper is suspected to date back to prehistoric times but was never refined until approximately 5000 years ago. Copper jewelry has been worn by Native Americans and Ancient Egyptians and once symbolized status.
Copper won’t rust, it can turn green over time, unless it is properly cared for. However, it’s easy to care for copper jewelry by simply washing it in warm, soapy water.
Alternatively, you can clean your copper jewelry with lemon juice, table salt, and a soft rag to maintain its shine.
Copper Jewelry Lasts a Long Time
While it’s difficult to pinpoint an expiration date for copper jewelry, the consensus is clear. Copper jewelry will last for generations- if you properly care for it.
Copper is a durable metal that has been used for centuries in jewelry making, piping, coins, construction, and industrial settings.
So, if you are wondering whether copper jewelry is worth the investment, the answer is yes.
Now, this doesn’t mean that your copper jewelry will eventually be worth a lot of money.
The monetary value of copper has significantly decreased over centuries, with the value of a penny being an example.
However, it does mean that you will be able to pass your copper jewelry down to your children and grandchildren.
Copper Dates Back to the Prehistoric Era
Copper is a natural mineral that has always existed, both in nature and in our bodies. It is the oldest known metal on Earth and once was a symbol of power and status.
Primitive humans once used copper to create basic hand tools for hunting and survival, but copper wasn’t refined into alloys until about 5000 years ago.
Ancient civilizations originally used copper to build weapons, but eventually, people began to craft it into jewelry and coins due to its pliability.
Copper jewelry has been worn by Egyptian pharaohs and Native Americans.
In the technological era, copper started to be used in electrical appliances and building construction.
Although the popularity of copper jewelry has decreased, copper alloys have continued to be used in other metals, such as bronze and sterling silver.
While it’s doubtful that you wanted to read a history lesson, the point is that copper has been around for a very long time, which makes it a long-lasting metal.
Copper May Eventually Develop a Green Patina
If you are looking for a reason to not invest in copper jewelry, this is the main reason that many people have stopped wearing copper.
Eventually, copper will develop what is called a green patina. Although copper is durable and long-lasting, it will turn green over time, and wearing copper jewelry daily may even turn your skin green.
The Statue of Liberty is built from copper and is a prime example of copper’s tendency to develop a green patina.
However, this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t ever wear copper. It simply means that you should wear it occasionally and properly care for your copper jewelry.
Copper Jewelry Can Be Cleaned with Warm Water or Lemon Juice
If you love your copper jewelry but find the idea of a green patina to be unsettling, you can help your copper pieces maintain their shine longer by properly caring for them.
Fortunately, it’s relatively simple to take reasonable care of your copper jewelry.
Since copper doesn’t rust, you can clean your copper pieces with plain old, warm, soapy water, as long as you thoroughly dry your jewelry afterward.
Alternatively, it’s been suggested to polish your copper jewelry with lemon juice, a touch of table salt, and a soft rag.
Vinegar, ketchup, and jewelry polishing cloth are also effective methods of polishing copper jewelry.
Now copper can tarnish in time, so it’s best to store your copper jewelry in re-sealable plastic bags that are free of moisture.
Frequently Asked Questions About How Long Does Copper Jewelry Last
Can you wear copper jewelry every day?
While the possibility of a green patina deters many people from wearing copper daily, if you appropriately care for your copper jewelry, it should be fine for daily wear.
Can you shower with copper jewelry?
The exposure to warm, soapy water will actually keep your copper jewelry clean and aid in maintaining its shine. However, you’ll want to hand-dry your copper pieces afterwards and store them in an airtight bag to prevent tarnishing.
Does real copper turn your skin green?
It can, due to naturally occurring chemical reactions. This is absolutely normal, but unsightly, nevertheless. However, you can avoid the green patina on your wrist, finger, or neck by simply applying a coat of clear nail polish to your copper jewelry and keeping your copper pieces dry.
So, the answer is that copper jewelry lasts for a very long time, but it can eventually tarnish or turn green.
Fortunately, with proper care, you can maintain the shine of your copper jewelry for several generations to come.