Gold vs. Platinum

May 31, 2011 | Posted in Engagement, Uncategorized | By

We have talked about diamond shapes, color and clarity so naturally the next step would be to choose your metal and setting for your ring.  Have you ever wondered what the difference is between platinum  and gold?  While there are many debates on which is more durable, we have done our best to find the answer!

Gold:

Gold jewelry has been the norm for decades, and still seems to be the most popular choice for bridal jewelry.  When choosing gold jewelry you should be informed about the gold content which is going to be a factor in price and durability.  To measure the purity of gold, there is a carat or karat system that measures the gold content that is mixed in with other metal content such as alloy to create the final product of a gold ring or other piece of jewelry.
So for example:

9kt gold contains 37.5% pure gold (375 parts per thousand parts).

14kt gold contains 58.5% pure gold (585 parts per thousand parts).

18kt gold contains 75% pure gold (750 parts per thousand parts).

Essentially the price will go up as the gold content rises, especially with the price of gold increasing.

Gold colors include: Yellow Gold, White Gold & Rose Gold

Currently, white gold seems to be the most popular choice of the three, while rose gold seems to be rising in popularity. Rose gold has a vintage appeal, and has inspired some beautiful pieces such as the rings below.

With colored gold such as white gold & rose gold, you should understand that the jewelry is made with a mixture of metals.  “White gold is an alloy of gold and some white metals such as silver and palladium. White gold can be 18kt, 14kt, 9kt or any karat. For example, 18kt yellow gold is made by mixing 75% gold (750 parts per thousand) with 25% (250 parts per thousand) other metals such as copper and zinc. 18kt white gold is made by mixing 75% gold with 25% other metals such as silver and palladium. So the amount of gold is the same but the alloy is different.” (http://gilletts.com.au)

You may have to get your jewelry rhodium plated “dipped” after awhile depending on how often you wear your jewelry and how much the white gold gets worn off.  There are cases where you could own your ring for years without ever having to get it re-rhodium plated, yet for some they may have to do this as often as every 6 months to a year.  Make sure to ask your jeweler if they offer this service in their store, and determine the cost if it is not included in a warranty plan.

 

 

Platinum:

We did a little homework on platinum, to see why it has become so popular.  From the scientific standpoint, we can definitely see why a jeweler would prefer to work with platinum. It is highly resistant to corrosion, has a melting point of 2041.4 compared to gold at 1337.58 and a boiling point of 4098 k compared to gold at 3080 k. Not that you would ever boil your ring, but it is interesting to see how strong platinum really is.  So what does that mean for you? Platinum is a great option for Men’s Wedding Bands as well, because of the scratch resistant surface.  Platinum prongs are sturdier and can keep your diamond secure in its setting. Plus, you won’t have to worry about tarnishing, and you wont have to get your ring “re-dipped” / rhodium plated.

 

 

Because platinum has more durability, you will be paying a higher cost for the jewelry itself and will have a higher expense should you need to size your ring or make any repairs.  Platinum is not completely scratch proof, so you may need to have the surface of the jewelry refinished or buffed out.  Ask your jeweler for pricing on sizing, and repairs for platinum jewelry to make sure that you are informed on what the maintenance costs will be.

We know your wedding jewelry will be beautiful and priceless to you as it should be, so share with us what you like about your ring!

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