The Benefits of Stainless Steel Jewelry Versus Aluminum Jewelry by Lexi Butler

Ohhhh... the beauty of stainless steel. Even just finely sanded it has the luxurious color of palladium white gold. Stainless steel typically has a silver sheen, but, unlike silver, it will not tarnish and it is not susceptible to scratches, dings or dents very easy.  As a designer, I love the possibility of mixing metals. Stainless steel looks great when combined with the soft color of silver and the yellow color of gold as shown here on my newest cuff.

Stainless steel is very resistant to rust, oxidation, and discoloration. It is a corrosion-resistant alloy which ideal for long-lasting jewelry designs like our STAINLESS STEEL LOVE STAMPED SILVER WIRE WRAP GOLD DRUZY BANGLE CUFF

Our stainless steel jewelry is unplated and therefore an excellent alternative for wearers with allergies and sensitivity to base metals such as copper or brass.

Stainless steel is made up of iron, chromium, nickel, manganese, and copper.  The chromium is added as an agent to provide corrosion resistance.  Also, because it is non-porous the resistance to corrosion is increased. Those with severe nickel allergies as I need to be aware that stainless steel does contain nickel as mentioned above.



Not all stainless steel jewelry is created equal... 316L is considered the best grade to use when allergic reactions are concerned. It is the type of stainless steel that is used in implants. Surgical steel, or better yet "implant" grade surgical steel is what you want...a grade that's meant for use inside or on the human body and completely hypo-allergenic. This is the only stainless steel I use in my jewelry designs.

Some have stated that the nickel in the stainless steel can cause a reaction but this is very rare. The reason why I do not create jewelry containing nickel or offer it on my website is the fact that I myself have a severe allergy to nickel. I know immediately if I have been exposed to nickel when I wear a belt touching my bare skin containing nickel. Within seconds I get an aggressive itching rash and a green mark that will flaunt my allergy.

After I did research on stainless steel...I decided to design a stainless steel bangle cuff and craft it by hand. I noticed stainless steel is a lot harder to work with than any other metal I worked with before. The results pertaining to the bangle stability, however, is unbeatable and will give the wearer a lifetime of enjoyment.

 I have been testing wearing the bangle since I made it and I am sure it is true that the containing nickel is bonded within the elements of the steel in such a way as to be held in a crystalline structure preventing any leaching.  Otherwise, I would have shown an allergic reaction to the nickel.

Compared to Aluminum: Stainless Steel is heavier and not easy to terr, where Aluminum, on the other hand, is very lightweight (Stainless Steel is 3x heavier than aluminum) and easily tears. That's the reason why aircraft bodies and automobiles are made from aluminum - it is much lighter.

When aluminum is oxidized, its surface will turn white and sometimes pit. In extremely acidic or basic environments, aluminum may corrode rapidly with catastrophic results. Taken from this source:

Aluminum does not have a very thin layer of chromium oxide which prevents any oxidation on stainless steel

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  • Katie Woodland

    I’ve never considered stainless steel jewelry before – but I definitely will now! I always opted for ‘silver’ coloured items (including white gold) because I found yellow gold to be too harsh on my very pale skin. Thank you for this simple and concise explanation.

  • Bonnie S Jones

    Lexi, your work is always beautiful. I love the way you strive to educate others on the quality of your products and why you choose to work with certain metals over others. Thank you so much for caring about us.

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