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"Green-Ear" What You Need To Know!


If you are a vintage or modern doll collector, you have either had first hand experience dealing with or have heard of Green Ear. I firmly believe by being an educated consumer on this topic, you can navigate through some of the hype and fear. Green ear is the after effect of junk metal that has tarnished over years which is brought on by a multitude of conditions & outside factors. (moisture, heat, chemical reactions etc) All junk metal (including plated) contains one common green ear danger "Brass & Junk Metal Alloys" When brass & junk metal alloys tarnish, it creates a greenish build up called Verdigris. Verdigris is a green patina that forms on brass, copper or other plated junk metal that has been exposed to air, moisture etc for periods of time. That patina builds up over time and leaches into the vinyl/rubber of both vintage and modern dolls. To help prevent this condition I use Only 14K Gold Filled or NYLON posts ONLY in all my earrings. (I DO NOT use ANY WHITE or other colored vinyl coated wire, see below) Gold Filled does not contain any junk metal or brass alloys which produces green ear in the first place.

***PLEASE NOTE***If your doll has green ear, whether you can see it or not, it can host itself on any metal no matter whether you use 14K gold filled or gold plated (junk/brass metal). When a doll has obvious greening that is easy to see, you know that at some point junk metal was left in contact with the dolls vinyl. But more times then not, a 50+ year old doll has some stage of greening in the ears, you just can not see it, until you put any metal form of earring back in the dolls ears. The greening is laying dormant waiting on any metal to host on.  If a doll shows signs of greening after using 14K gold filled the doll had green ear long before you put the earrings in.

Several eBay sellers who offer earrings for both Barbie & the Revlonís at such a cheap price are selling them on tiny WHITE coated vinyl wire as well as plated pins. Gold Filled metal is expensive to use, so if you are purchasing earrings claiming to be on gold filled and their cheap, look out! You CAN NOT sell earrings on eBay cheaply and be using gold filled metal! When using the white coated wire and the wire is bent or straighten from a roll, the coating on the wire cracks & chips exposing the metal wire underneath. That metal wire is made with, YES, you guessed it, brass & junk metal alloys. There is also no such things as "High Quality" vinyl coated wire. If the conditions are right, (and they are in every home in America, with the rise and drop of temperature & humidity in your home) by using this type of product, you will have just created the ideal situation to set your doll up for green ear. Vinyl coated wire is not safe to use on any doll...PERIOD! No matter who you purchase from, be an educated consumer and ask questions as to what they are using in their products. Once you receive them, test them to make sure they are safe. You can do this using a magnet. If you can pick up the posts of the earrings with a magnet, they are loaded with brass & junk metal alloys and should never be used. (gold filled WILL NOT be attracted to the magnet). We all love a bargain, including myself, but there are times to cut corners and times when you should not. Wrapping your vintage or modern doll collection in cheap metal will only come back to cost you $$$$ and a loss to your collection in the end!

Also, please be careful if following the instructions given in Barbie Bazaarís article on making jewelry pieces for your precious dolls. Not only will Vintage & Modern dolls develop green ear from wearing plated & junk metal earrings, they will also develop a greening of the neck & head if plated & junk chain and wire are used for making drop pearl necklaces. The author of this article failed to warn the public of the dangers of using plated & junk metals in their jewelry creations and using them on your vintage dolls. Suggesting that one could use plated & junk metal products from your local craft store, with no long term side effects is both irresponsible & dangerous! If you would like to make jewelry pieces for your dolls make sure you use gold filled metal findings in all of your creations.

If you have further questions, feel free to email me anytime. 


"How To Treat Green Ear"



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