One of the best things about buying jewellery is the huge variety of metals you have to choose from. Whether you’re looking for a sweet silver gift or a precious platinum statement of your love, there are decisions to be made!
Here are some of the top metals used to make jewellery with that you’ll commonly find.
1. Silver-Filled Metals
Silver-filled metals are a popular choice for jewellery. The wire is typically made using pressure and heat to apply a layer of silver to a cheaper base metal. The silver layer is a great deal thicker than standard plating, and because of its immense thickness, it provides a deeper shine. You can even have this type of jewellery engraved without exposing the base metal below it.
You’ll commonly find silver-filled metals used for items like chains and ear wire.
Next up is silver. Sterling silver is an excellent option as it lasts a long time and is incredibly durable. It’s perfect for necklaces, rings, cuff links, belt buckles and bracelets. Silver is often softer than metals like platinum and gold, so it’s more likely to tarnish if it’s not properly looked after.
3. Base Metal
Base metals include titanium, brass, copper, iron and nickel, as well as others. These are metals that are easy to come by and also corrode easily, but they do make for beautiful accessories such as pendants.
Gold jewellery is commonly a mixture of gold and other metals, like zinc, nickel, silver, and copper. When it comes to the actual gold percentage, it’s measured in carats – this is the word used to describe the amount of pure gold to other metals in the piece. The higher the proportion of pure gold, the higher the price tag.
The most gold content you will come across is 24 carats. It’s not great for jewellery as it’s extremely malleable and soft. Rather, 14-carat gold is strong, as is 18-carat gold.
Pure gold is yellow, and it is the non-gold metals in a piece that determine the metal’s final colour. Here’s how it works:
- Yellow Gold – a mixture of pure gold, zinc, copper or silver
- White Gold – mixture of pure gold and a range of white metals like silver or nickel
- Green Gold – yellow gold without the copper
- Rose Gold – pure gold mixed with a high proportion of copper
Places such as Gold Buyers Sydney buy gold in exchange for cash. If you’re looking for some quick cash, they’re one of the places to visit.
Titanium is possibly the strongest jewellery metal around. It’s actually the hardest known metal, and it’s lightweight, scratch-resistant and very easy to colour.
Best of all, this metal is totally hypoallergenic, making it very popular for piercing jewellery.
Platinum is the most expensive and rarest of all the metals. It’s also incredibly durable and doesn’t tarnish, ever. Pure platinum is often alloyed with cobalt and copper to give it a slightly different look. And, when it’s paired with other metals, it makes it even more durable. If you want to buy an engagement ring, then diamond engagement rings made with platinum are very long-lasting.
If your budget doesn’t quite stretch to pure platinum, look for other platinum group metals such as iridium, ruthenium, osmium, rhodium or palladium.
These are the most common metals you’ll find when shopping for jewellery.