BUYER BEWARE WHEN BUYING 'STAINLESS STEEL' PRODUCTS. THEY ARE NOT ALL THE SAME! There are over 100 types of Stainless Steel. Some are Cheap. Some are Expensive.
What's the difference?
Lets start with the scientific definition of Stainless Steel:
Stainless Steel is ANY Iron based alloy that contains at least 11% Chromium.
Stainless Steel that meets this minimum definition is NOT good for cookware since it is reactive to acidic foods and can stain.
18/8 Stainless Steel is an Iron based alloy that contains at least 18% Chromium and 8% Nickel. 18/10 Stainless Steel is an Iron based alloy that contains at least 18% Chromium and 10% Nickel.
Both 18/8 and 18/10 Stainless Steels are considered the BEST Stainless Steels for cookware. The small 2% difference in nickel makes no practical difference.
The high nickel content of 18/8 and 18/10 Stainless Steel makes both metals impervious to acidic foods, more durable, and allows the metals to be polished to a very smooth, mirror finish for easy cleaning.
18/8 and 18/10 Stainless Steels are also known as Type 304 and Surgical Stainless Steel.
EXPLAINING THE ATTRACTION OF DIFFERENT TYPES OF STAINLESS STEEL TO A MAGNET.
Here's a quick test you can perform to determine if your cookware is made of cheap stainless steel OR expensive 18/8 or 18/10 Stainless Steel.
A magnet will STICK to cheap stainless steel. A magnet will NOT STICK to expensive 18/8 or 18/10 Stainless Steel.
Here's an easy way to remember the Magnet Test.
"If a magnet sticks, you got stuck with cheap stainless steel."