White Bronze Vs Sterling Silver – What Are the Differences

For those familiar with the different jewels, white bronze and sterling silver are similar in characteristic and color. The white bronze will easily take the place of sterling silver if you want it to.

Since they look so similar, you can easily confuse them, which is why we want you to understand more about it.

What is white bronze?

white bronze

Like most other metals, this one will work for you when you are looking for something stylish. This is not bronze; instead, it’s an alloy of copper, tin, and zinc. Its main use is to give your jewel the perfect whitish color. So it works the same way the nickel works.

In the past, the people used it as a grave marker. Nonetheless, today people don’t use it for the grave, but it was perfect for that then.

Pros

  • Notice that it also works to take the part of the sterling silver as well.
  • These metals are great, exceptionally since its highly corrosion-resistant.
  • Again it will never tarnish, but neither does it rust. This doesn’t mean that it won’t entirely tarnish, remember.
  • It’s nicely hard, which means you can use it to make some of the jewel’s most durable options in the market.
  • It’s durable, and you should only use it when you expect it to last longer.

Cons

  • It will tarnish too, just as you expect other metals to do.
  • Sometimes it may cause allergic reactions. Remember, it’s an alloy, so you have combined different metals with different properties. It’s especially true if you are reactive to copper and the likes.

Features

Its an alloy: as earlier mentioned, this is an alloy of copper, tin, and zinc, and it’s the only reason why it becomes harder than the regular bronze and with the perfect nickel shine.

Its mostly used for plating too. When you are not going to use it in making the real jewel, you can use it to make the jewel plating. It will maintain the soft texture, the smooth finish, and the perfect color.

It may tarnish: although it’s not silver, it can tarnish but to a lower level. Remember, it has some copper content within it.

Well, when you are using the metal, then it can’t fully replace silver. It acts as a shield between the base metal and the gold plating. You will further mostly fiend it under the silver plating.

You will find it useful as a barrier because the bronze is thin, so it doesn’t look like you have other metals beneath.

It’s the perfect solution for the nickel problem because it will give you almost the same traits and color. With this, more people are opting to use white bronze instead of other expensive metal.

What is sterling silver?

sterling silver

It is a multipurpose, advanced, and very desirable alloy. It is long-lasting and versatile, which means it can be molded into various jewelry because of its natural soft nature.

Sterling silver jewelry is trendy, and it’s one of the most valuable options.

Sterling silver is created from an alloy of copper and fine silver at 7. 5% and 92.5%, respectively. This is the main reason behind sterling silver being denoted as ‘925

The percentages of copper and pure silver alloy that make up the sterling silver are also the reasons behind it being hallmarked by 925.

It makes exceptional jewelry no wonder it’s one of the precious metals. The secret to having it last longer is to take good care of it. Make sure you store it right, keeping humidity off.

Since it has small amounts of copper, it can tarnish quickly, mostly when left out in the air. Often it will form a greenish color coating both on your skin and on the jewel. The secret is, therefore, not to put it in the open air.

The metal will begin to turn dark brown or even black when continuously exposed to these conditions.

It is essential to clean the metal with a less harsh chemical. Using harsh chemicals like toothpaste and soda ash disintegrates the metal over time.

Pros of silver sterling

Affordable 

Jewelry that is made from sterling silver has a modest and cost-effective price. Its value for the money spent on them is, therefore, worth it. Plating these metals with precious gems changes their prices, though. Often people use rhodium plating, and that’s even more expensive.

Its versatile.

Sterling silver jewelry comes in very many models and trendy styles. It’s easy to mix and match these metals with other precious gems, and you can readily use them for any event.

Alternatively, you can easily revamp and custom-make this jewelry to fit your style.

Easy maintenance and sparkling appearance

Sterling silver has a glorious shiny look, which makes its surface look stunning and eye-catching. Its shiny surface does not fade over time unless exposed to high humid conditions.

It’s easy to take care of and maintain and care for these metals as they do not require regular cleaning.

Cons of sterling silver

It will tarnish

This is a significant drawback for some people, especially when you’re using it for body jewels. You can see that the skin may turn green as a result of the tarnishing. Therefore, some people find it irritating. Check out our article on does sterling silver turns green?

It may cause skin allergies.

Since it features an alloy, then it means that sometimes you may not avoid the allergies. Remember, it features an alloy of metals, and some people will add in nickel components to make the sterling silver even shinier.

Similarities

They are both alloys

None of the metals you see here are pure. They feature the use of different metals to come up with the names. The composition will vary, but they still are alloys. The good thing is that they are suitable alloys that will look beautiful on different jewels.

They are both great pieces.

Even though it’s an alloy, if you found the safe one, then you will notice that it’s perfect to use. Most people use them to create different forms of jewels. Just make sure they don’t have nickel and harmful elements.

Differences

The difference by the composition

Remember, these are two different types of metals.

White bronze

This metal gets its name from the color it makes when you mix the different metals. Nonetheless, white bronze is what they regularly refer to as tri-alloy. It features the use of three metals to make the alloy. It often has a composition of 55% copper, 30% tin, and 15% zinc.

With these features, though, notice that the metal takes on the color and some silver features. It’s not a real bronze even though it has the same alloy composed of copper and zinc that makes the bronze.

Sterling silver

Generally, this metal contains pure silver at 92.5%, and the remaining percentage is supposed to be only copper. However, some people will even add a nickel to it.

The appearance

White bronze

Just like the name suggests, the white bronze will come to you in almost white color. But then it’s brighter than even the nickel that most people like to use. It takes on the shine and color of silver or rhodium. Most people like to use it as a plating metal too.

Sterling silver

If you know the silver-grey color, then you have it right for the sterling silver. You can be sure it will maintain high levels of shine and brightness as well.

Therefore, the difference here is that the white bronze is white while the sterling silver is close to grey.

Does it tarnish?

When we are talking about tarnishing, I have to mention that tarnish’s primary cause is copper. But even though they both have the copper, the tarnish level is different.

Sterling silver will tarnish, and this is the main drawback to sterling silver. But don’t worry nowadays you can use Argentum silver. I know since it tarnishes, then it reduces its durability. The tarnishing occurs when the silver oxidizes.

White bronze has copper, but contrary to what you would expect, it doesn’t tarnish. This why people like it so much. Some people even prefer to use it for plating.

The value

Regardless of these features, sterling silver remains a precious metal, and as such, it’s of higher value. Although more buyers are finding ways to make the different metals usable by plating using white bronze.

It looks perfect, and it can sometimes take the place of sterling silver to achieve the same color. The value, therefore, of the sterling silver remains higher.

People are more attracted to sterling silver compared to white bronze. This also means that it will be costly to buy the silver than to buy the white bronze. Notice that the metals both have additional alloys to make them manageable.

Also, even though they come at varying prices, sterling silver is costlier.

Durability

Generally speaking, alloys are excellent as they are harder and, therefore, more robust. Notice that both pieces here are perfect and will serve you for a long time, but only if you take good care of them.

Although I know the sterling silver will be durable, white bronze will last a little longer than sterling silver.

Note, the one thing that will destroy your sterling silver sooner is the tarnishing. As it keeps tarnishing, then it starts o lose its shape and look. But if you remember to keep it free of tarnish, then it will last even longer. Notice that in the presence of oxygen, then the metal oxidizes to form the tarnish.

White bronze will never tarnish; thus, you can be sure it will last longer since it is even more challenging. This is particularly true when you are dealing with real white bronze jewel and not just the coating.

Is it hypoallergenic?

The sterling silver and the white bronze we mention here contain no allergy-causing metals. Albeit, you should know the components of the jewel metals. Remember, some people will fix in the nickel and other elements that cause allergies into the alloy.

Generally, though, sterling silver is hypoallergenic, and so is white bronze. This doesn’t mean that you are 100% sure about the composition. This is why it’s safe to check the composition before you can conclude whether it’s safe.

It’s important to note, though, that some people even react to copper. If you are the type that will even react to copper, we can’t call this metals hypoallergenic. This is a combination that’s ideal for those who don’t react to most metals.

I have a nickel allergy.

None of these metals contains nickel, but sometimes some add-in nickel to sterling silver to give it a better shine and color. If you, therefore, have these allergies, don’t wear sterling silver unless you are sure it’s safe.

Things to consider when going to buy them

The budget

What amount do you have aside for the jewel? When you know the price you intend to use, then you will keep to the budget. Different jewels have different prices remember, so you should know the budget you have.

The reviews

Depending on where you intend to buy the jewel, you will know when to check the reviews. On either side, what people say about the jewels will matter to you. Take the time to read clearly before you finally decide on settling on a particular kind of jewel.

Why are you buying the jewel?

The purpose of buying the jewel will determine whether you should buy the sterling silver or white bronze. The jewel you therefore choose will determine whether it matches your occasion or not. If you are buying it for daily use, therefore you should buy the durable option.

Where to buy the jewel?

Again there are many places where you can buy the jewel, whether online or offline. You will get to decide the place that looks more appealing to you. Buy it from Amazon just because of the versatility and the variety of options to choose from.

They also come in both high end and budget price. Also, remember to choose the jewels that fit you best based on the occasion.

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