Copper, gorgeous reddish-brown metal, seems to have an inexplicable love affair with green. You’ve probably heard the tales, seen the memes, or even experienced it yourself – the curious case of your skin rocking a green tint after wearing that stunning copper bracelet or flaunting those vintage copper earrings. If not, then you wouldn’t be here. However, there is nothing to worry about it at all. From this article, you will the answer to why does copper turn your skin green?
This is because when copper comes into contact with oxygen and moisture, it forms a layer of copper oxide on its surface. And, this compound (copper carbonate) is green in color.
However, we’re here to unravel the mystery, explain the science, and maybe even give you some handy tips on how to remove the stain.
Why Does Copper Turn Your Skin Green?
The green color that appears on the skin after wearing copper jewelry is caused by a chemical reaction between the copper and the skin. When copper comes into contact with oxygen and moisture, it forms a layer of copper oxide or copper carbonate. This is a type of oxidation reaction, which means that copper loses electrons and becomes positively charged. This layer is green in color, and it can be transferred to the skin.
The more acidic your skin, the more likely it is to turn green when exposed to copper. This is because acidic skin creates a more favorable environment for copper oxide to form. Other factors that can contribute to green skin from copper include sweating, using lotion, having a low body pH, etc.
Is It Harmful to Wear Copper Jewelry If My Skin Turns Green?
No, it is not harmful to wear copper jewelry even if your skin turns green. It is a natural and harmless reaction that does not indicate any toxicity or infection. It’s a temporary effect and doesn’t pose any health risks. You can easily wash off the green color with soap and water.
In fact, some people believe that copper has several healing properties and can help with body pain, arthritis, soreness, inflammation, blood circulation, etc. However, you may experience itching, redness, or swelling if you have a copper allergy.
How to Remove Green Stains from My Skin
According to dermatologists, the green stains from copper are not harmful at all. it can be washed off too easily with available products from your home. If you have a copper allergy, the case would be different. Here are some excellent ways to remove the green stain from your skin caused by copper:
Wash the area with soap and water:
This is the simplest and most effective way to remove the stain. Be sure to use warm water and mild soap.
Use a mild acidic solution:
A mild acidic solution, such as vinegar, lemon juice, lime juice, etc. can help to break down the copper oxide that is causing the stain. Apply the solution to the affected area and let it sit for a few minutes before washing it off.
Use a Commercial Stain Remover:
There are a number of commercial stain removers that can be used to remove copper stains from the skin. Be sure to follow the instructions on the product label.
Consult a Dermatologist:
If the stain is severe or does not respond to home treatment, you may need to see a doctor. They may be able to prescribe a medication or treatment to remove the stain.
The extent to which copper turns the skin green can vary from person to person. Factors such as the individual’s skin chemistry, the level of moisture and sweat on the skin, and the length of time the copper object is in contact with the skin all influence how quickly and intensely the green discoloration develops.
Other Preventing Solutions:
- Choose copper jewelry that is coated with a protective layer, such as silver, gold, and so on.
- Apply a clear coat of nail polish to the jewelry. It will make the jewelry shine as well.
- Clean the jewelry regularly with soap and water.
- Avoid wearing the jewelry when you are sweating or using lotion.
The green tinge copper can leave on the skin is harmless and temporary. Usually, it is resulting from a chemical reaction between copper, oxygen, moisture, and natural oils, making it a unique and appealing characteristic for those who appreciate the antique vibe of the metal. So, go ahead, rock your copper jewelry!