Parents are caring and fear for their children. They want to keep them safe, above all else. This is a CRUCIAL thing we as jewelry traders MUST understand in order to sell to parents.
Although parents have also fear of wasting money, this feeling is stronger for their children health and and safe. So, knowing which materials are hypoallergenic, and which materials are most likely to lead to an allergic reaction is THE MOST important information we can possess for selling children’s jewelry.
While most people are fine wearing nickel jewelry, it is the metal causing most allergic reactions. Therefore, it would be unwise to sell children’s jewelry with large amounts of nickel in it.
Many costume jewelry pieces are suspect here. But what about sterling silver jewelry? Is it hypoallergenic? An article titled, “Hypoallergenic Vs. Sterling Silver Earrings” from Leaf.tv explores this question: “Sterling silver is a jewelry alloy of 92.5 percent silver and 7.5 percent other metals.
The other metal in sterling silver is generally copper, but it can also be germanium, zinc or platinum. Traces of nickel can also be found in sterling silver jewelry and can cause an allergic reaction in people with intense jewelry allergies. However, most people who are allergic to nickel can wear sterling silver jewelry.” (emphasis added) Let’s look at that last line again. It doesn’t’ say most people can wear sterling silver jewelry without a reaction.
It says most people who already have an allergy to nickel (which is a small subset of the overall population), can wear sterling silver jewelry without a reaction. In other words, we can confidently recommend sterling silver jewelry to our customers.
However, if a parent tells you their child has a nickel allergy or their child is about to get a new piercing, it would be wise to also offer them an EVEN SAFER material than sterling silver.
Nickel Allergies and New Piercings.
An article from Jewelry Wise titled, “Jewelry for Kids” has this to say about material choice for a new piercing:
“Nickel allergies are a common cause of allergic contact dermatitis.
The skin reaction is similar to one caused by infection, so if those newly pierced ears are looking bad, it could be an infection or it could be an allergy.
Look for earring materials that tend to not irritate newly pierced ears.”
Since sterling silver is 92.5 percent silver (aka definitely not nickel), if you want to be extra cautious, you want to recommend parents buy materials that are even more pure.
These could include very high purity gold or silver, but these materials are also relatively soft (not durable) and expensive.
The best bet for a highly worried parent would be surgery grade stainless steel. It’s very pure, it’s very durable and it’s not that expensive compared to gold or silver.
However, it is important to note almost all children with nickel allergies will be completely fine wearing sterling silver jewelry.
As a piece from Jewelry Info Place titled, “What is Hypoallergenic Jewelry?” says,
“Although there are some people who are allergic to silver, most people who are allergic to nickel are not allergic to (sterling) silver because sterling silver is an almost pure metal usually made from 92.5% silver and 7.5% of other metals like zinc or copper…so it does not contain nickel, the most common source of allergies.”
The bottom line on children’s jewelry and allergens?
Almost everyone will be safe with sterling silver jewelry, but offering a small selection of surgical grade stainless steel can be a wise choice to lessen the fears of certain parents (and make the sale).
To be honest, there’s not much that needs to be said here that isn’t common sense.
Children’s brains are not quite as developed as adults, particularly in areas that deal with impulse control and making rational decisions.
And kids love to have fun!
So, buying a child a rather expensive, thin gold necklace and then sending them to the playground, is probably a bad idea … unless you like throwing money away!
Pure gold and silver are relatively “soft” metals, meaning they are easily scratched.
That’s why sterling silver, or gold plated sterling silver, is a better idea – it’s a bit harder, and much less expensive.
Again, stainless steel is also a great choice due to it’s cost and durability.
Ok, we’ve offered plenty of background on what you need to know to sell children’s jewelry to parents.
Now, let’s move onto various example pieces from FashionSilver.co.uk
These pieces are all made of sterling silver. Sterling silver is probably the best material choice for children’s jewelrybecause of it’s low cost, good durability and near-hypoallergenic nature.
This fun Flying Turtle pendant has bright colors and a cool design that’s sure to appeal to younger children.
This sterling silver pendant is a great addition to your child’s jewelry selection.
Butterflies are very “in” with children, and these blue and pink butterfly earrings have enough colours on them to make a child feel “fabulous.”
Additionally, due to the innocent design, parents shouldn’t have a problem allowing their children to wear these earrings.
Red fish 925 sterling silver rings. Handmade settings.
Children Silver Earrings, Panda Ear Studs, White Black Earrings, Kid's Earrings
Cute and Colorful Penguin’s Silver ring
Finally, we have, perhaps, the most fun piece of all: a baseball (fanatic) snake!
You can’t help but smile when you see this snake grin and children will love the attitude as well.
This piece will appeal to parents, boys and girls alike.