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Long’s Jewelers Blog

Sensitive Skin? 5 Tips for Choosing Jewelry That Won't Give You a Rash [Guest Post]

Gwen Lewis is a writer and makeup artist based in Southern California. Because of her passion for beauty and health, she hopes to help others not just look great but feel great. Let's take a look at some of her top tips for choosing jewelry that can pair with sensitive skin!

Jewelry is a beautiful way to express your style and your spirit. The amazing benefits of jewelry-wearing are understandably dampered when your beautiful pieces leave ugly rashes, blistering, or redness where they come into contact with your skin.

Check out these tips for wearing the right jewelry with sensitive skin!

1) Leave costume jewelry for the costumes

If your skin is sensitive, you shouldn’t be wearing any costume jewelry. This kind of jewelry often uses nickel, which causes a reaction in many people. Tell-tale signs of an nickle alloy (mixed) metal - as opposed to gold or silver - are greenish or brown stains on the skin where the jewelry lies. This kind of skin response can be minor in the instance of finger rings but can cause a rash in the case of bracelets and necklaces.

Fake jewelry can be especially harmful when used for newly pierced ears. If your ears are still healing, don’t switch out jewelry for at least two to three months. Even then, if you know your skin is prone to responses, don’t swap your studs for those of a lower quality. These can cause inflammation, tenderness, and infection and should be removed immediately.

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2) Find out your skin's sensitivities 

Different people respond to different things, and when it comes to metals, many people may have similar or different allergies or skin responses. While many people may have skin reactions to low quality or alloy metals as mentioned above, there are other common sensitivities to metals popularly worn as jewelry.

If you know that nickel causes you to have a reaction, be sure to double-check jewelry bought from department stores or jewelry cases. Some stainless steel may be manufactured with nickle or iron, rendering it unwearable for those with the allergy.  

Don’t be tempted to buy these kinds of items - it’s not worth it! You won’t be able to wear the jewelry for any length of time, and it may make your reaction to the metal worse over time.

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3) Not all metals are created equal

In keeping with the previous point, those with super sensitive skin may only be able to wear solid gold, for example.

If you have a well-loved piece of jewelry that’s made from nickel, you could wear it by having a jeweler plate it with some other kind of metal like platinum. Platinum is a great metal to choose for those who have sensitive skin because it is naturally hypoallergenic!

In the case of stainless steel, be sure that the jewelry is made from surgical stainless steel. This is pure steel and will be less likely to cause your skin problems.

4) Take care of your jewelry (and your skin)

It’s important to wash jewelry in a solution meant for that purpose. The jewelry pieces that you wear every day collect dirt and other buildup from perfumes, soaps, and lotion. Take off your items at least once a week and let them soak in a jewelry cleaning solution. If buildup remains, use a clean toothbrush to remove it from the small details of your jewelry. Be sure to wash your skin daily with a mild cleanser if you know you have skin allergies and are a jewelry wearer.

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5) Be wary of clasps and hooks

At times, even if the jewelry itself is beautiful and made from a quality metal, jewelry manufacturers may resort to clasps and hooks that are made from a lower grade metal to save on costs. Be sure when buying jewelry, especially from online sources, that clasps and hooks are made from niobium or stainless steel.

Wearing jewelry doesn’t have to be painful! Follow these tips if you love jewelry but have sensitive skin to get the most out of your current pieces and future buying choices.

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