Smog and pollution have long been problematic in large cities. Exhaust from vehicles and pollution from manufacturers combine to negatively impact the breathability of air in many urban areas. An air purifier is not a particularly new idea, but there’s an ambitious project that uses large outdoor filters to reclaim urban environments. One version of this initiative collects the smog and airborne particulates, accumulating enough black matter to produce jewelry. But why would anyone want to wear smog jewelry?

It’s a Conversation Starter

This relatively new idea has gained a lot of publicity, but it’s still far from being common knowledge. The unique black cubes will no doubt attract attention, and these decorative items definitely come with a story. When people ask about earrings or a necklace, the story often concludes with the name of a local store. The more interesting pieces may be passed down in the family or purchased on vacation overseas. These pressed cubes of smog, on the other hand, have a whole story in how they are produced. When conversation dwindles at a formal gathering, you can flash your cufflinks, and it’s like you just pulled a reptile out of your pocket for “show and tell.”

They’re Adaptable

The tiny blocks of compressed particulates come in an 8.4 by 8.4-millimeter square, a great size for a modest ring, earrings, or cufflinks. You can also work with a local jeweler to get more creative with the setting. The combination of black particulates and clear acrylic makes for a classic but understated aesthetic. The result is appropriate for casual wear, business wear, and more formal occasions. Gold and silver pieces generally have to be coordinated to avoid clashing with other choices, and precious metals can leave you feeling overdressed at relatively casual gatherings. This new eco-friendly alternative bypasses the problem altogether. There aren’t any long-established rules about when it is or isn’t appropriate to make this particular fashion statement.

They Make a Big Difference

Each cube contains the pollution from roughly a thousand cubic meters of air. That means that you’ve made a real contribution to the cleanliness of at least one urban environment. To be sure, there are a lot of unanswered questions when it comes to environmentalism, and these jewelry pieces are striking reminders about how much remains to be sorted out. If this type of air purifier becomes commonplace, for example, what else could be done with this accumulated debris? When you buy a set of cufflinks or a ring, the funds help to promote ongoing research and pay for the energy costs of running these large urban filters.

The next time you’re adding to your jewelry collection or shopping for gifts, consider these jewelry pieces of condensed smog. You can help with the development of a new type of air purifier. Smaller ionizing versions are already commonly available for household use, but these larger installations offer a unique solution to the real environmental problems of urban areas. Be part of the solution, and you can wear your cufflinks with pride.

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