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Why I do not use Renaissance wax to seal my copper jewelry

January 11, 2020

Why I do not use Renaissance wax to seal my copper jewelry

Most metals used to make jewelry will tarnish when exposed to air or humidity. And in this department, copper has the worst reputation because tarnish can turn your skin green and although there is nothing wrong with being green, it makes your skin look dirty and well, who wants to look dirty?
Also, copper is known to give allergies.

Because I have written several articles about copper jewelry, toxicity and green skin I am asked  the same question over and over again: “is it safe to wear copper jewelry?”. I know this is a concern many people have.

Related posts:

What is copper and how it is used to make jewelry

About copper jewelry toxicity

Copper jewelry and green skin

I looked at the definition of Renaissance wax: "Renaissance Wax is a brand of microcrystalline wax polish used in antique restoration and museum conservation around the world. Commonly used to polish and conserve metal objects, it is also used on gemstones and such organic materials wood, ivory, and tortoiseshell." Source Wikipedia

For even more information, I looked around in Facebook groups and Etsy, and a vast majority of jewelry sellers use Renaissance wax and the (pompous) reason is that it was created by the British Museum. Maybe an untold reason is that others do it, so it should be good so I should do it too. Plus it is easy: rub it, pack and go! Do your homework people! This is not because everyone do it that it’s good. You know what they say… when the blind leads the blind, they both shall fall into the ditch!

Well, I for one do not like Renaissance wax for jewelry and do not use it. Before being mad at me for such a "lèse-majesté" statement, please note that I do not say Renaissance wax is bad, just that I think it is not appropriate to use it with jewelry. Do you think the Queen rubs her jewels with wax? no, she just dip them in gin. Source https://www.countryliving.com/uk/news/a29806921/queen-cleaning-diamonds-gin/

As a start, British museum stuff is displayed behind windows, not on your body. Duh!

Then, the thing reeks petrochemical. When you buy jewelry at a craft fair, you do not realize it because you are in the open. But when you buy online, your jewelry is shipped in a box. And when you open the box, you first impression is that it smells like toxic waste. Pleasant? not at all.

The bad smell makes sense when you understand that wax is a byproduct of crude oil refinery. Yuk!

Rub a generous amount of wax, let it dry, then rub with with a cloth. The wax that remains on the jewelry will create a “barrier” between the metal and the elements, thus prevent tarnish, green skin and allergies. Maybe you’ll glow in the dark but that is not disclosed ;)

How long such a protection lasts? I do not know but I would guess not that long as it does not sound like a good protector for jewelry that is worn often.

Now, tell me… you are afraid of natural copper toxicity but you have no issue wearing a petrochemical covered jewelry on your skin?  Ummm…. does not make a lot of sense to me. Although I am not into hard liquors, I'll pick gin anytime!

Now, go and wear jewelry!
Patricia

PS: I appreciate all your comments and I read everyone of them. However, I do not have the technical capability to answer to them individually. If you have a specific question, I would recommend using my contact page and I will reply to you via email. 





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