Brass is NOT junk metal!
The worst metal you could put on your body or in your ears is base metal. It's the "hamburger meat" of the jewelry world. You're allergic to it and it turns you colors (some people turn colors with nice metals, but that is their personal acidity reacting). If it costs $5-$25 then this is most likely what you are buying.
We recently introduced Brass and Surgical Steel as options when shopping our jewelry. These are clean, hygienic, pure metals that most people do not have allergies to. Surgical steel does have nickel in it, so stay away if you have that specific allergy.
What I really want to talk to you about is Brass! Brass is highly durable! It is easy to polish and corrosion resistant. Brass is lead and nickel free.
So don't be scared of brass. It's a GREAT price and a great metal. It looks incredibly similar to gold and some people love how it looks darkened. If that's not you then getcha some of these:
Of course I must admit I prefer not to polish and wear the 14k gold filled myself. But we have a huge brass customer and welcome more!