Copper sink with damaged patina

Birthday message written in ketchup left in copper sink for several hours.

Copper is magical.

If you don’t believe it, this living, self-healing metal will prove it to you. It may just take a bit of patience. Here is an example that pretty well illustrates its naturally self-healing properties—a big plus especially for kitchen sinks, which exposes itself to acidic substances. Using a pastry decorator, a message was scrawled with ketchup at the bottom of one of our copper farmhouse sinks. After a few hours the ketchup was rinsed off to reveal this bright and shiny birthday message.
Within a week the text had all but completely disappeared from the sink.
Those who have owned Native Trails copper sinks for an extended period of time come to understand that their sink will constantly change and heal itself with normal usage. Some homeowners become so comfortable with this fact that they even have some fun with their sinks—like writing special (temporary) messages to their family.
For all of our customers who embrace the living finish and unique beauty of every product, plenty more feel uneasy about it—at first. Our customer service department is no stranger to calls from frantic homeowners asking if they have inadvertently wrecked their new copper sink because they left a slice of lemon or a dollop of salsa in it overnight. We admit the effect can be startling; acidic substances will brighten copper’s surface so that it’s as shiny as a new penny. But it will immediately begin to re-patina itself. In fact, many people believe that copper sinks only get more beautiful with time, and we have noticed that the more use a sink gets the faster it will re-patina.

Copper sink with repaired patina

The same copper sink naturally healed after one week.

More “magical” things about copper:

Other than gold, copper is the only metal to have a distinctive color.
Along with wool, it is one of the traditional gifts for the seventh wedding anniversary. We find that a lot of products from the Native Trails Lifestyle line are given as seventh anniversary gifts.
It is warm to the touch, so copper bathtubs will warm up as soon as you pour water into them, unlike porcelain tubs, which take much longer to heat up. Some homeowners take advantage of copper’s conductive properties and pair their copper tub with radiant floor heating for especially long, hot soaks.
It is the metal of Venus, the goddess of love, beauty, harmony, and peace, and is known as a feminine metal, as it is naturally found in higher concentrations in the female body.

How to Clean a Copper Sink

As far as cleaning goes, we don’t recommend using abrasives or so-called “copper cleaners” on our sinks, as they will polish that gorgeous patina right out. Instead, mild soap and water, along with a wipe-down to dry it out from time to time, is the best way to let it do its thing and evolve naturally. In fact, copper sinks do a pretty great job at cleaning themselves. A University of Southampton study cites that “deployed as a touch surface in food preparation areas, copper will continuously kill any pathogens that settle on it.”
Another concern we hear about copper is that it will turn green or oxidize. However, if you follow our very simple care and maintenance instructions, indoor sinks should not show signs of oxidation, as it is naturally resistant to corrosion. Even when our sinks are used in outdoor kitchens we don’t hear much complaint about greening. And if a sink does show some green patina, which many people find very desirable, just remove anything stuck on—leaves, twigs, food, etc.—along with any water in your sink. Then, you should find that your sink heals itself over time. Like magic.

See how you can use copper sinks to create Farmhouse Style in the Kitchen.