Copper is a beautiful and unique metal. It is the only metal of it's colour. Copper is even mixed with yellow gold to give rose gold it's pinky colour. Copper also oxidizes more quickly than most metals causing it to turn a brown and eventually greenish-blue colour. This tarnish gives it character, but it can also be easily removed and restored to it's shiny, rosy colour.
Cleaning Tarnished Copper
Pour a small dish of soy sauce. Submerge piece in dish and swish around for 1-3 minutes. Remove piece and quickly rinse/wash soy sauce off thoroughly under a tap. Dry immediately with a clean, soft towel. You can also use ketchup in place of soy sauce. If you have an impregnated polishing cloth, give it a polish afterward.
Keeping copper from tarnishing
Try not to handle your copper too much, especially if you have oils and creams on your hands. Try not to get it wet, and I don't reccomend wearing it in the shower. You can store copper in a small, airtight plastic bag when it is not being worn. Copper polishing cloths are available for purchase on my website here.
Copper rings are beautiful, facetted and go well with any skin tone. With long wear they can sometimes react with the acids in sweat and turn skin greenish. It isn't harmful and can be washed off. A quick solution is to paint the inside of the band with clear nail polish to create a barrier or wash hands frequently throughout the day. Often wearing the ring and washing hands will actually keep the ring from tarnishing!
Lacquers & Coats
Spraying or coating your copper with a clear coat is an option, although it doesn't last forever. It will eventually wear off and can sometimes leave the copper looking patchy. It is not necessarily something I reccomend, but please contact me directly if you would like to try it.
Copper is a softer metal, but when treated with care will stand up to normal wear. If you have any questions please don't hesitate to contact me.