It’s a very simple question but I want to ask about Patina

Hi Neil!
Happy holidays!!

thank you!

are you finding any good black friday deals?


I was told the ideal temperature for LOS is 140° no more. I bought a thermometer on Amazon specifically for this purpose.


Kathie - I always use LOS at room temperature. My surface is very clean and with a tooth. I can control the depth of color and get the shading i want. By using a bit of household ammonia, I get darker color that lasts. If I can’t get the color dark enough, I might heat the jewelry in hot water, but never heat the LOS. I’ve started using the LOS gel, it’s just easier.


Liver of sulfur is a mixture of potassium sulfide, potassium polysulfide, potassium thiosulfate and it’s spontaneous oxidation product, potassium sulfate. It blackens silver by oxidation and sulfidation…the same as the black tarnish that will build up on a silver spoon used to eat eggs or other high sulfur food…K2S does spontaneous hydrolyze in water to KOH and S-2… but it doesn’t matter since it’s the sulfide ion which reacts with silver, which in turn reduces it to AgS…or black patina…the aqueous solution is alkaline…as KOH is potash lye.
pure finely powdered sulfur, “flowers of sulfur” will also work, but it much more difficult to control than liver of sulfur… store LOS in an airtight container…I still have a small bottle of powder LOS, adding an organic antioxidant as mentioned by another writer on this thread does work in keeping it’s potency… I would suggest potassium citrate rather than sodium citrate…although the former is expensive and difficult to find in small quantities… using a more dilute solution of powdered LOS in water and applying it with a fine tipped artist’s paint brush allows for more control to areas that you want to darken… after drying, more can be applied for a darker color, to jet black. I also use it at room temperature, not heated…controlling the reaction is easier… The reaction of LOS with metal does generate fumes with several sulfur species, including hydrogen sulfide which is not only smelly but toxic…outdoors or a fume hood indoors…the blackened area can be polished from a natural matt finish to a gloss, but very carefully so as not to remove it all together…