Stainless Steel vs Sterling Silver – Which Should You Choose?

Stainless Steel vs Sterling Silver – Which Should You Choose?

Stainless Steel vs Sterling Silver – Which Should You Choose?

When it comes to choosing accessories, we're often faced with more than just aesthetics. We look at certain things such as what the accessories are made of. Is it hypoallergenic? Is it waterproof? In this regard, sterling silver and stainless steel are some of the most popular choices. Although they're similar in appearance, the materials used to make these accessories are vastly different.
Both stainless steel and sterling silver have various advantages and disadvantages which we'll take a look at in a bit, but first let's take a squiz at their definitions and differences! 

Stainless Steel

Stainless steel is a type of metal that has a variety of metal alloys that have different chemical compositions (yay science!). There are numerous variations of this metal with the most popular combination being steel and chromium. This combination provides various advantages such as strength, corrosion resistance, and durability. 

Sterling Silver

Silver is considered a precious metal and in addition to this, it is also an element. Sterling silver is composed of 92.5% silver and 7.5% copper. The combination here is due to the fact that pure silver is much too soft for functional accessories such as jewellery for everyday use. We’re all for the delicate pieces but nobody wants a flimsy set of earrings when life generally requires us to be everything but!

So, what’s the difference? 

Both sterling silver and stainless steel are made up of various metals which is why they are called alloy metals. That being said, they still have differences when compared to one another which you should consider for your specific needs - my hypoallergenic babes I am looking at you!
In terms of durability, stainless steel takes the cake. Its combination of various metals enables it to withstand the wear and tear of everyday use. Additionally, it features a scratch-resistant and corrosion-proof appearance. This makes it the ideal material for regular wearing.
On the other hand, sterling silver is more malleable and is more elegant in its design. It is also more lightweight and can be used for complex designs. This makes it a popular choice for valuable custom pieces. 

Let’s look at the pro’s and cons 

Stainless steel - pros

  • Corrosion-resistant
  • It is a harder more durable material
  • Resistant to scratches and corrosion
  • Aesthetically it shines more than silver
  • Less expensive than silver
  • Ideal for regular use
  • Easy to clean 
  • It is more often than not hypoallergenic 

Stainless steel - cons

  • Due to its hardy composition it is not easy to repair damaged stainless steel accessories.

Sterling Silver - pros

  • It has an elegant aesthetic.
  • It’s malleable and versatile which makes it easier to create intricate designs with.
  • Due to its malleability it is easy to repair damages and wear and tear. It is also easy to clean and buff which restores it back to its original appearance.
  • It is more often than not hypoallergenic 

Sterling Silver - cons

  • More prone to scratches due to its softness
  • Tends to cost more than stainless steel

 

What do we use at Trend Tonic?

Both! (Coz we’re the best). In terms of hypo allergenics, one of the lowest reaction metals is stainless steel which is what we use as a default metal on all our earrings at Trend Tonic. We do however offer sterling silver as an option which, as we’ve seen above, is also a fabulous choice to keep the allergies at bay. Happy ears for years!
Shop our full range of hypoallergenic jewellery here 
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