Material Guide: Solid Gold, Gold Filled, Gold Vermeil and Gold Plated Jewelry Explained
Ever wonder what all of these different gold jewelry materials are? Look no further - we will provide you with brief descriptions explaining the differences.
Needless to say, solid gold jewelry does not oxidize/discolor allowing you to wear it daily and everywhere, and it is the best quality and made to last forever. It is hypoallergenic and ranges from 10K to 24K. The higher the karat (K), the purer and softer the gold. For jewelry, pure 24K gold is too "breakable"/malleable which is why it is mixed with other metals to strengthen the material. Most jewelry ranges between 12K-18K.
Gold Filled/Gold Fill
Gold-filled jewelry is composed of a solid layer of gold (requires at least 1/20th or 5% of its weight) bonded to a base of some metals. Gold filled jewelry is more tarnish/discolor resistant than gold plated jewelry (vermeil and regular), and with good care they are great for daily wear and last for years. High quality, hypoallergenic, second best to solid gold and is more affordable.
Gold vermeil jewelry has a layer of gold placed (at least 2.5 microns) over 925 sterling silver. Due to the thicker layer of gold plating, gold vermeil jewelry can be worn daily and last for a long time. Hypoallergenic, great quality and more affordable than solid gold/gold filled.
Gold plated jewelry has a layer of gold placed over some metals. With good and proper care, the jewelry can be worn daily and remain in its high quality condition for a long time. The most affordable option with the widest variety of designs.
Whichever material you select (except for solid gold), there is a strong correlation between the level of care applied to the jewelry and the length it will stay in its original condition. Outside of solid gold pieces, they all can tarnish/discolor in time when getting in contact with certain materials. Please refer to our jewelry care for more information.
If you have any questions anytime, please contact us! We are here to help.