Pure silver, known as fine silver, is very soft and can be easily damaged. On the other hand, Sterling silver is a harder silver. That’s because sterling silver (.925) is an alloy. It contains 92.5% by weight of silver and 7.5% by weight of other metals, usually copper. Because the addition of copper in sterling silver is tiny, it does not affect the silver content value. In fact, it increases the durability without changing the beauty of the metal.
For this reason, most silver jewelry is made with Sterling silver. Sterling silver is the precious metal that shines most when polished. The tarnishing happens because of the copper molecules migration to the surface. It is a natural reaction with sulfur or hydrogen sulfide in the air.
When you care for your sterling silver, it will last you a lifetime. As with any other jewelry, keep it stored in its original box or a cloth pouch to avoid it being scratch by other pieces. Like any other jewelry, avoid exposing your jewelry to chemicals, especially when gemstones are a part of the jewelry design.
You will notice that by wearing your silver jewelry prevents tarnish from building up. When you feel it is time to bring back the sparkle, a silver polishing cloth will do the job. Just rub the fabric on the silver surface avoiding the gemstones.