Friday, March 13, 2020

3 Things to Do If You Have A Reaction to Your Jewelry

3 Things to Do If You Have A Reaction to Your Jewelry

Inexpensive jewelry has its benefits. You can purchase trendy pieces with not a lot out of your pocket. Then if the trend doesn't last, it isn't  hard to let it go. There are similar 'inspired by' pieces that are much less expensive than their brand name counterparts. But after wearing them for a while, do you get skin irritation or rashes in places the jewelry has touched? Could it be the jewelry? Inexpensive costume jewelry might be fine for many people but, for those with nickel allergies, problems can occur. After I gave birth to my youngest daughter I started developing a rash with some of my jewelry, especially my rings. Based on what I have experienced, it seems I have developed a nickel allergy. So a better solution for those with skin allergies like me and on a budget is to buy fewer pieces of better-quality jewelry.

Why is Cheap Jewelry Not Always a Bargain?

Purchasing the best jewelry at higher prices may seem like a big commitment, but in the end, it might be the best choice. Look for reasonably priced jewelry of pure metals and no nickel content. You can get more at by checking their website for bargains and well-designed pieces.

Cheap jewelry is often made of a mixture of metals, including nickel. If you are a fan of white gold, be aware sometimes white gold pieces can even contain nickel. Nickel is a common cause of allergic contact dermatitis. Since there are several different allergens that can cause skin irritations, including a plant allergy, insect and bug bites, and latex allergies, it is important to identify the real culprit. This can often be done using a process of elimination. To see if the jewelry contains nickel, use an over-the-counter test kit with dimethyglyoxime. Put the liquid on a cotton-tipped applicator and firmly rub the piece of jewelry for five seconds. Nickel will make the applicator turn pink.

A visit to a dermatologist can provide confirmation of the allergy cause. If your bargain jewelry contains nickel, and you have an allergic reaction, that jewelry was no bargain. Stop wearing the offending pieces and replace them with better-quality pieces as money allows. If you have a nicer piece of jewelry you want to wear, you can try painting the part that touches your skin with clear nail polish to seal it or get the piece coated in zinc which will hopefully help! 

3 Things to Do If You Have A Reaction to Your Jewelry

Which Jewelry is Proven Safe?

Jewelry made of pure metals, such as stainless steel, gold, platinum, and sterling silver that is 92.5% pure, are safe to wear for those who have a tendency for skin irritation because they do not contain nickel. Other metals without nickel include copper and titanium. Whenever you are shopping for jewelry, look for 10-24 karat gold, sterling silver, or the other safe metals listed. Look for seasonal sales and used jewelry with guarantees on metal content to save money. Buy things you really love and wear them more often. Having fewer classic pieces of good-quality jewelry that you can wear with anything is a good way to go. Good-quality jewelry lasts longer, so you can slowly build up a collection.

3 Things to Do If You Have A Reaction to Your Jewelry

How to Treat Skin Irritations and Allergies

Remember though, it is not enough to throw out cheap jewelry and buy better quality pieces. You need to treat that nickel allergy. Skin allergies usually appear 12 to 48 hours after your skin comes in contact with nickel and can last for days (trust me, I know). Symptoms include itching, redness, dry patches, rash, swelling of the skin, and even blisters. Left uncared for, the skin can get darker, leathery, and cracked. The symptoms are usually only at the contact point but can spread if the skin is sweaty. The irritation can become infected if left untreated.

Treatment consists of testing the skin with a skin patch test. Once the nickel allergy is confirmed, hydrocortisone cream, steroid cream, and antihistamine pills are used to treat it. The jewelry that caused the allergic reaction should be donated, given away, or disposed.

If you can't part with a couple of pieces, clean them and coat the parts that touch your skin with three layers of clear nail polish. Wear them at your own risk though. Nickel allergies are permanent once they develop. To wear jewelry without risk of skin irritation, stick to the better-quality pieces made of pure, safe metals, including 24 karat gold, sterling silver, platinum, and others listed above. Hope this helps! 

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