Maybe I should back up just a second. What, exactly, is plating?
You probably already know that it’s gold over another material, but I’m willing to bet that most people who sell gold-plated jewelry couldn’t tell you much more than that. Why not? Probably because there’s so little gold on there that it’s not something they even want to talk about.
But I’m proud of how much gold-plating is on my jewelry, and I’m not afraid to talk about it!
WHAT IS IT?
Plating is when a layer of gold (or silver, or rhodium) is added on top of another metal. Jewelry is usually plated to cover up the original metal color, to provide a more even color, or to prevent tarnish. But because it’s a coating, it will wear away over time. How fast that happens, though, depends on how thick the plating is.
HOW THICK IS GOLD PLATING?
Here’s how much gold-plated jewelry makers typically use:
Jewelry from mass retailers (think mega-huge stores with rock-bottom prices) usually aren’t using gold at all, but a coating meant to imitate gold. It’s so thin that it rubs off after a few wears.
Specialty retailers (think fashion and designer brands) will use actual gold — most of the time — but not even enough to technically qualify as gold plating, according to the Federal Trade Commission. While it’s usually thicker than what you’d find on jewelry from mass retailers, it’s still pretty thin.
I want you to be able to enjoy your jewelry for a long time, so I make sure to go thick with my gold plating. I use 3-4 times as much gold as most designers, ensuring that your jewelry stays looking great longer.
HOW DO I TAKE CARE OF IT?
Treat gold-plated jewelry like you would other jewelry — keep it away from harsh chemicals (like taking it off before going for a swim, or doing any cleaning), store it in its own pouch to prevent scratches, and if it gets wet, dry it off completely to prevent dark spots. With a little bit of care, you’ll be able to hold on to these pieces for years to come.