When you're shopping for a perfect gift for someone in your life, it can be challenging to know what to get for them. Gold jewelry is an excellent option for those who wear it. But as soon as you begin searching for the perfect gold chains or pendants, you'll quickly find out gold jewelry differs in price and quality from one kind to the next.
How can you know the best type of gold jewelry to buy when you want it to last? Let's evaluate gold-plated jewelry and how it differs from other gold types. Then, we'll share a few tips for choosing jewelry your loved one will enjoy for a long time.
What Is Gold Plating?
Looking around for gold jewelry online, you might notice some pieces labeled gold-plated, gold-filled, or gold vermeil. In short, these pieces are all gold-colored and use an electroplating process to fuse a layer of gold onto a base metal underneath.
This jewelry style was invented in the early 1800s by a chemist named Luigi Brugnatelli, who changed the jewelry-making game forever. Gold-plated jewelry tends to be popular because it allows people to enjoy the look of gold jewelry without having to pay extravagant prices.
What's the Difference Between Gold-Plated and Gold-Filled?
Gold-plated jewelry, gold-filled jewelry, and gold vermeil are all types of gold-colored jewelry that use electroplating. Though they share this similarity, they can differ in value and longevity, so knowing which kind of gold jewelry you're purchasing is a must.
Typically, plated gold and gold vermeil have a thinner layer of gold. At the same time, gold-filled pieces contain a more substantial amount of gold.
How Is Gold-Plated Jewelry Made?
As we mentioned, gold-plated jewelry is made through an electroplating process invented in the 1800s. The process consists of cleaning the base metal piece of jewelry thoroughly, plating a high-quality layer of nickel onto the jewelry, and then plating the gold on top. The nickel layer allows the gold to remain pure and uncontaminated by the base metal.
Afterward, the jewelry gets dipped into the gold liquid, and a positive electrical charge fuses the gold with the nickel onto the jewelry. The jeweler applies a gold plating that may be anywhere between 0.17 and 2.5 microns thick. Then, they will let the piece of jewelry hang as it dries.
How Long Will Gold-Plated Jewelry Last?
Let's say you've found a gold ring that would be perfect for your friend and want to buy it as a gift. Before you order it, you may wonder whether it will last or quickly break.
When it comes to gold-plated jewelry, some pieces last longer than others. For example, gold-plated jewelry with a thin plating may fade over a few weeks to reveal the base metals underneath.
On the other hand, a piece of gold-plated jewelry with a protective coating can last years and look excellent. Choosing gold-plated jewelry made with superior craftsmanship and protective coating allows you to give your friend jewelry that looks high-class at a much lower price.
6 Tips To Keep Gold-Plated Jewelry Looking Good
Let's say you purchase gold-plated jewelry that doesn't feature a protective coating to keep the gold from wearing off. In that case, you'll want to follow a few tips to ensure your jewelry continues to turn heads for the right reasons.
Here are several ways to prolong the life of gold-plated jewelry:
Keep Your Hands Clean
Are you someone who fidgets? There's nothing wrong with fidgeting, but you may feel tempted to play around with your jewelry when your hands are idle. Messing with your gold-plated jewelry may cause it to lose its color more quickly than it otherwise would.
To help keep your jewelry looking its best, wash your hands often. Doing this can help keep it safe from unnecessary dirt and fading.
Avoid Swimming While Wearing Plated Gold
There are some varieties of jewelry that are perfectly fine to swim in. However, suppose you're wearing gold-plated jewelry that isn't protected by an outer coating. In that case, leaving it in a safe spot before you swim is a good idea.
Prolonged contact with water can cause some plated jewelry to lose its color more quickly, but chlorinated water is the real kicker. To keep your jewelry safe, try to remember to take it off before swimming.
Clean Your Gold-Plated Jewelry Often
One way to keep gold-plated jewelry looking its best is to clean it regularly. Your jewelry comes into contact with more dirt than you think and can build up over time. Cleaning your jewelry can help it maintain a shine and high-quality appearance.
Be Gentle With Gold-Plated Jewelry
The nature of gold-plated jewelry is that it is a thin layer of gold fused to a base metal. As a result, heavy scratches or damage can cause it to lose its plating.
If you're planning to wear gold-plated jewelry, you'll want to avoid performing manual labor while wearing it. You'd hate to scrape your chains, bracelet, ring, or pendant on something rough and ruin its quality.
Keep Gold-Plated Jewelry Away From Harsh Chemicals
When cleaning your jewelry, it's essential to ensure you don't use harsh chemicals that could hurt your gold-plated jewelry. For the best outcome, use dish soap and warm water to clean your jewelry since harsh chemicals can cause damage to your favorite gold-plated accessories.
Take Gold-Plated Jewelry Off When Sweating
Are you someone who spends lots of time in the gym? Perhaps you hike regularly or spend a significant amount of your free time outdoors.
Your body oils and sweat can impact your gold-plated details. If you tend to sweat often, you'll want to wipe your gold-plated jewelry to ensure the sweat doesn't sit for long.
How To Choose High-Quality Gold Jewelry
Whether you want to buy gold-colored jewelry for yourself or a friend, knowing what to look for is essential. Today, we've gone over the basics of gold-plated jewelry and the care required to keep it looking its best. But is that your only option?
When choosing gold-plated jewelry, you don't have to be limited. Going for gold-plated chains, bracelets, and other accessories that have a protective coating can allow you to enjoy your jewelry without worry.
You'll also want to select jewelry that contains a high karat amount of gold. Shooting for 18 karats is a sweet spot for valuable jewelry that doesn't scratch as easily as pure gold. Prioritizing these qualities in your gold jewelry can help you find pieces you love that will last a long time.
Why CRAFTD Jewelry Stands Out
Where can you find gold jewelry made with quality craftsmanship and materials? We're dedicated to creating jewelry that lasts. You can browse the CRAFTD collection to find something for a friend, and you might also spot something to add to your collection.
Keep reading to see a few more reasons our jewelry stands out.
18-Karat Plated Gold
At CRAFTD, we use 18-karat plated gold and premium 316L stainless steel so your jewelry will look good and maintain its appeal for years. This karat amount offers a higher-quality gold that doesn't get damaged as quickly as pure gold so that you can take pride in your CRAFTD gold jewelry.
All of our jewelry also contains a coating that fortifies it against the elements. Because of this, you can wear your favorite bracelets, rings, and other CRAFTD elements in the heat without worrying about how they'll fare.
In addition to being heatproof, our jewelry is also waterproof. This protection from water means you're free to wear your CRAFTD jewelry even in the pool, rain, or other water.
So go ahead and wear your favorite chains in the poo against your skin. You won't have to stress about your CRAFTD jewelry losing its color. Turning heads is all you should have to worry about.
Typical gold-plated jewelry might be sensitive to sweat and body oils, but ours isn't. When you wear CRAFTD jewelry, you won't have to be paranoid that your sweat will damage your jewelry. Simply wash it every once in a while to maintain its sheen and quality.
CRAFTD Gold Essentials
Are you ready to make the leap to try out CRAFTD gold jewelry? Here are a few gold basics to start your collection:
- The CRAFTD Crown Pendant: Wear this necklace to remind yourself who's number one in your life. This piece is nothing but regal in our 18-karat plated gold.
- The CRAFTD Wheat Chain: Are you in need of new basic chains? When looking for a chain that you can wear with almost anything, you can't go wrong with a wheat chain.
- The CRAFTD Fate Ring:Adding a statement ring to your look can help you express your personality more boldly. Try our CRAFTD fate ring with your favorite streetwear.
Gold Jewelry That Stands the Test of Time
Knowing about gold-plated jewelry can help you navigate the jewelry world a little bit better and select jewelry that you love. At the end of the day, you deserve high-quality gold jewelry that you don't have to think hard about. We're happy to hook you up at CRAFTD so you can feel confident in jewelry that will last years.
PRECIOUS METALS | University of Texas
Type 316 and 316L Stainless Steels | ThoughtCo