Gold jewelry has become incredibly popular because they are beautiful and timeless accessories. Nowadays, there are many different types of gold jewelry, such as Gold plated, Gold vermeil, Gold filled, and solid gold jewelry. But what exactly is the difference between these types and which one should you choose? The differences between these types lie in the alloy, thickness, and karat of the gold. In this blog, we will discuss the different types of gold and tell you everything you need to know to find the perfect gold accessory that suits you best.
Gold plated: a budget-friendly option
Gold plated jewelry is made by applying a thin layer of gold onto a base metal. This base metal is usually a cheap metal like brass or copper. The gold layer can wear off over time and reveal the base metal, resulting in possible discolorations and dull spots on your jewelry.
To call a piece of jewelry Gold plated, the layer of gold must be at least 0.5 microns thick. The thicker the layer of gold, the longer the jewelry will last. Gold plated is a suitable option for people on a limited budget as it is one of the cheapest types of gold jewelry.
Gold vermeil: a sustainable option
Gold vermeil jewelry is jewelry made of 925 sterling silver to which a layer of at least 10 karats gold is applied. Before applying the gold, the silver is thoroughly cleaned and polished. To use the term Gold Vermeil, a piece of jewelry must meet three conditions:
- The jewelry must be made of 925 sterling silver.
- The jewelry must be covered with at least 10 karats of gold.
- The gilding of the gold layer must be at least 2.5 microns thick.
Gold vermeil jewelry is a sustainable choice. Sterling silver is a high-quality precious metal, and gold vermeil jewelry is more expensive than gold plated jewelry, but it will last much longer.
Gold filled: a bonded layer of gold
Gold filled jewelry is jewelry in which a thick layer of real gold is applied to a metal such as brass, copper, or sterling silver, bonded by heat and pressure. This creates a much thicker layer of gold than gold plated or gold vermeil jewelry. The minimum thickness of gold is 5% or 1/20 of the total weight.
Although the name suggests that the jewelry is filled with gold, this is not the case. Gold filled jewelry is not filled with gold, but rather has a thick outer layer of 2 or 3 layers of gold. Gold filled jewelry is not very popular because they are much more expensive than gold plated jewelry, while some gold-filled jewelry consists of the same cheaper base metals.
Solid gold: a timeless investment
Solid gold jewelry is entirely made of gold and is therefore the most expensive option among gold jewelry. Nevertheless, solid gold jewelry is a good investment because they last a lifetime and will never lose their value. Within gold, the karatage is often considered.
The karatage shows the ratio of gold to other metals. 24-karat gold is pure gold, but it is not commonly used in jewelry because it is very soft and prone to scratches. More commonly used are 14- or 18-karat gold. In 14 karat gold, the jewelry contains about 58.3% gold. In 18 karat gold, the jewelry consists of 75% gold. Jewelry with a high karatage is expensive but will remain beautiful and last long.
The perfect jewelry for you
When buying gold jewelry, it’s important to consider your budget and how often you plan to wear the jewelry. If you want a gold piece that will last a long time, gold vermeil and solid gold (14 or 18 karat gold) are the best options. With the above overview, you can make an informed decision and purchase the perfect gold jewelry for you.