When you venture into the world of high-quality jewelry, you might notice that platinum tends to be more expensive than other precious metals, like 14k gold, even though it seems to be less popular. So, what is platinum, and why is it more spendy than other metal options?
Uniquely, platinum is one precious metal that is only found in high-quality jewelry. While you can find inexpensive gold and silver options, platinum is a rarer metal, which contributes to its price.
This increased cost hints at its quality, but you want to make sure that you know exactly what you’re getting before you make the investment. To help you decide whether or not platinum is for you, here’s a quick guide.
What is platinum?
Platinum is a precious metal used in jewelry. Its durability and malleability make it ideal for jewelry, especially pieces like wedding rings or engagement rings that are worn every day.
Denser than other jewelry options, platinum stands the test of time better than gold or silver because it won’t corrode or tarnish, and it’s more difficult to scratch or dent.
Platinum is much rarer than other precious metals. This, combined with its longevity, make it one of the most expensive jewelry metals. However, it requires less cleaning and care than other metals, so opting for platinum over gold or silver is a bit of a trade-off.
Like gold and silver, jewelry made with platinum is rarely 100% platinum. However, high-quality platinum pieces contain much more platinum than 14k gold contains gold. 950 platinum, for example, contains 95% platinum while 14k gold only contains 58.3% gold. The purity of platinum jewelry also contributes to its cost.
Should I choose white gold or platinum jewelry?
To the layman, platinum and white gold look exactly the same. Over time, however, you’ll discover noticeable differences between the two metals.
White gold is coated with rhodium in order to achieve its silver tone. Eventually, this coating will fade, revealing the yellow of the gold. You will need to get the jewelry recoated in order to return it to its silvery tone. Additionally, some white gold is mixed with nickel to help produce the grey color, which some people are sensitive to. (FreshTrends’ white gold is always nickel-free and safe for those with nickel allergies).
Platinum is naturally grey. Although it will darken over time, a single professional cleaning session will bring it back to its original luster. Some people actually prefer the darker grey tone and allow their platinum jewelry to darken, greatly limiting the need for jewelry care. Since platinum jewelry is mostly platinum (any jewelry that contains less than 80% platinum is not considered platinum jewelry), you won’t find nickel mixed in it, which makes it a popular option for those with skin sensitivities.
If you like to wear the same jewelry piece daily without having to change it, platinum is a better option than white gold. It’s less susceptible to scratches, and the overall care is less intensive. Platinum is more expensive than white gold, however, so if you like to have a large jewelry collection and don’t mind the care, then white gold is probably the metal for you.
How do I care for my platinum?
Platinum is a relatively low maintenance metal. In order to maintain its silver-tone, you can use non-abrasive jewelry cleaner or warm water and soap to keep it clean. Although platinum is durable, it can still get scratched, so you’ll want to use a soft cloth. You can also opt for professional cleaning by a jeweler.
To further prevent scratching, you should store your platinum away from your other jewelry. Either keep your platinum jewelry in its own cloth bag or in a separate jewelry box. You opt for platinum for its longevity, so do what you can to help make it last.
If you have the means to invest in platinum, then it will be one of the smarter jewelry options. Its durability and low maintenance care make ideal jewelry pieces, especially when worn in prominent body piercings, like a nose piercing.