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Topic: Are all aurora borealis finishes done with lead?  (Read 556 times)
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MinnieMay9
« on: July 27, 2012 04:59:56 PM »

I love the look of beads with an AB finish to them.  They make things just look so pretty.
I heard that to get this effect they coat the item in a thin layer of lead.
I was thinking of making a bracelet where the beads would be touching my skin directly, so I'm a bit worried about the lead.  I am the kind of person who wears the same bracelets until they fall off.
Is there any way to tell if the AB finish is done with anything that isn't lead?  Can that even be done?

If it helps, I've been looking at getting some of these:
www.riogrande.com/Product/Swarovski-Elements-Crystal-Tapered-Beads-Assortment-Aurora-Borealis/07545960?pos=1
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« Reply #1 on: August 22, 2012 10:30:39 PM »

I really don't think the trace amounts of lead found in Swarovski beads in a bracelet would harm an adult who is using it properly (ie not putting it in their mouth, licking it frequently, or filing them to create dust).  Make sure you wash your hands and to be super safe pat the bracelet dry when it is wet with a separate towel. 
Lead poisoning via dermal contact is rare, even when dealing with pure lead (fishing weights, ammo, etc).  The amount of lead you would need to touch daily is staggering. 

For anyone, it's truly ingesting the lead as dust (or in the case of small kids by eating things with lead in them) that causes it to build up and cause problems.  That is why California's warning is on the webpage stating "This product should not be used in jewelry or other items intended for children under the age of 12.

Truth be told, even school kids who are on rifle teams rarely come up with bad blood work when it comes to lead poisoning.   They come in contact with far more lead than most people. 


I'm not sure about AB coatings on different brands.  Try contacting bead vendors about other brands that do AB coating to check and see.  Do the plastic varieties coat with lead too?  I kind of thought lead was present in many true crystal (vs just glass) items- so keep that in mind with your bead search too.  Smiley  Good luck!
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