Shopping for a new kitchen has thrown up an interesting question. Which kitchen door handles are suitable for someone with a nickel allergy? The kitchen we’ve chosen is wood painted cream, kind of shaker style, but the door handles that look best are antique effect or nickel effect, or chrome effect… When asked, the sales staff at this kitchen manufacturer do not actually know whether nickel is present in any of their door handles. One would assume that the nickel effect ones do actually contain nickel, but in this crazy world who knows? Perhaps they’re made to just LOOK like nickel!
Stainless steel should be fine but it can contain approximately 10% Nickel. Usually this is bonded so tightly it won’t leech, but if you are extremely sensitive to nickel you may still experience a reaction. I get a reaction to some stainless steel jewellery, ironically this was to a medicalert bracelet!
The obvious solution would be to fit wooden handles and paint to match, though finding an exact colour match could prove time consuming.
It seems brass would be good option: Brass is an alloy of copper and zinc. So perhaps it will be the brass ones, or maybe the chrome effect ones… but are these brass door handles really brass? or just brass effect? It seems noone actually knows. Apparently you can also get nickel brass which is composed of 70% copper, 24.5% zinc and 5.5% nickel and is used to make pound coins in the pound sterling currency.
Did you know that in 2002, researchers found amounts of nickel being emitted by 1 and 2 Euro coins far in excess of recommended standards and nickel was voted ‘Allergen of the Year’ in 2008 by the American Contact Dermatitis Society. (Facts from Wikipedia – so they must be true, right?)
The search continues for suitable door handles but I will be more than happy with a handleless kitchen for a while if it comes to that. Far better than no kitchen at all!
Anyone else had the same conunmdrum? Where should I look for nickel free kitchen cupboard handles?