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Chrome

chrome | ˈkrōm

noun

A hard, brittle, grayish-white metal that is difficult to fuse and resistant to corrosion

Chrome is a naturally-occuring metal that is hard, brittle, and typically grayish-white in color. Though it has an aesthetically appealing look, it isn’t often used in jewelry. The main reason is that chrome must be plated onto another metal, the most common of which is nickel. According to the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC), approximately 10 to 20% of the American population is allergic to nickel. For this reason, many jewelers create nickel-free jewelry, and thus, chrome plating isn’t a popular or particularly marketable jewelry technique given its limited target market and the allergic reaction it can cause in a large percentage of the population. Even for those who aren't allergic to nickel, chrome isn’t a very viable jewelry option. Chrome isn’t very corrosive resistant, especially to human sweat which naturally contains salt. This means chrome plated jewelry isn’t a good option for every day wearing. For all these reasons, chrome isn’t typically used in jewelry. Chrome plating is popular, however, for other uses such as industrial and automotive purposes.

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