Figuring out Copper

Many people have been asking me about copper...

So let’s start from the beginning

Copper is an essential mineral found in plant life and in the human body and is considered the oldest metal ore. It is often made into a metal alloy and has been used for over 10,000 years. In its pure form, copper is a soft and malleable metal that can be mixed with other metals like brass and bronze. Copper is amazing because it is 100% recyclable and does not lose any of its original mined quality. In fact, over 80% of the copper mined since its discovery thousands of years ago is still in use today! Most people think of copper in relation to currency, like American pennies but there are many other (more fashionable) ways to use this metal too.

Copper items are made to last a lifetime

Copper jewelry dates back to the ancient Egyptians and their hieroglyphics show it was a sign of status within society. Copper's simple beauty and durability made it ideal for jewelry during ancient times because of its malleability and is still a popular material for modern day pieces like bracelets, pendants, and earrings. Copper items are made to last a lifetime, especially when they are cared for properly. One of the great things about copper is that it is relatively easy to clean and keep in good condition and you don’t need to buy a fancy cleaner just to do it. The metal reacts to acid, so you can use a variety of household products like lemon juice, vinegar, and even ketchup to clean it. When copper appears tarnished or has a greenish tint to it, soak the jewelry in the cleaner for 20 minutes. When the time is up, use mild soap and water to rinse the jewelry and pat dry with a cloth to have your copper looking shiny and new!

You’re probably thinking, shiny?...

But what about the Statue of Liberty? Isn't that copper? Yes! The Statue of Liberty is the largest copper statue in the world. The green color occurs when copper interacts with air and water which causes the metal to oxidize and change color. When copper jewelry interacts with sweat, a similar interaction happens and the green hue is called, chelates. Sometimes the chelates can cause your skin to turn green where the jewelry is worn- but thankfully it is easily washed off with soap and water. When copper comes in direct contact with your skin, there is an enzymatic chemical reaction which allows copper to enter your body in the form of copper salt. In order for this process to happen, the copper cannot be coated with another metal and must be 99.9% copper.

How your body can actually benefit from wearing copper

Now that we’ve discussed the history of copper jewelry and the simple steps you can take to ensure your copper items last a lifetime, we’ll move on to talk about how your body can actually benefit from wearing copper. As humans, our bodies need minerals. Food is the most common way to introduce minerals to our bodies. But what if you don’t eat enough food containing copper? Or what if you have a lot of vitamin C or zinc in your diet and it blocks your body’s ability to absorb copper? There is an easy solution to that and you probably already know where I am going with this... wear copper jewelry! Some people have mineral deficiencies and copper can be absorbed through the skin and can replenish the copper mineral within your body. I would also like to mention that too much of a mineral can be a bad thing. Can that happen by wearing copper jewelry? Nope! If you eat copper, you can take in too much but when you wear copper your body will only absorb the amount needed and will block excess absorption, making copper jewelry safe and even beneficial for your body.

I know, I know. We can talk about copper all we want, but what difference will you really notice?

If you are someone that has a copper deficiency and you start wearing copper jewelry like bracelets, necklaces, or rings you might notice that your joints feel better and your circulation improves. This is a great option for people with arthritis or similar joint issues. While I don’t have arthritis, I do deal with freezing hands and feet all the time no matter the weather. By wearing copper jewelry, I have found my hands are not cold to the touch and my circulatory system has improved. I’m sure some people have their doubts, and I do too. It could be the copper or it could be my perception of the changes but if the end result is comfortable hands and feet, I’ll take it!

Holistic and spiritual properties

Along with the health benefits of copper, people also rave about the holistic and spiritual properties of this metal. Holistically, copper has been known as the body metal and is considered a grounding metal for the body and spirit. Copper is also considered capable of storing healing and protective properties and this is why it was historically used for totems and talismans.  

So what have we learned from all of this?

Copper is a durable metal that is easy to clean. When copper is worn, it can help your joints and circulation system and provide an extra source of copper for your body to use. In addition to the health benefits, it also holds spiritual and healing properties that ground your body and spirit. And last but not least, its simple beauty makes it a wonderful addition to any jewelry collection! 

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