White Gold vs Platinum - What's the Difference?
In passing, they seem to look the same. So what's the difference between white gold and platinum? It's one of the questions Natasha gets asked most frequently - brush up on your knowledge below.
Colour & Weight
There is actually a difference when it comes to colour. Side by side, white gold is the brighter and 'whiter' of the two. One of the reasons for this is rhodium plating - without which, white gold would still have a slightly yellow tint from the gold in its alloy. Platinum, however, is more of a soft gunmetal grey. Platinum is also denser, which also makes it feel heavier; the same ring will weigh more in platinum than in white gold.
Our Octagon rings are made to order in the precious metal of your preference
That rhodium plating we just touched on finishes white gold pieces beautifully, giving them their crisp, bright polish. However: the plating often requires maintenance, especially when it comes to pieces that get lots of wear, like rings (earrings often last longer as they're not really rubbing against anything). Some people like to re-plate their pieces annually, but others can go much longer - it comes down to the wear and tear of each item. Re-plating is a relatively straightforward job; the cost depends on the piece.
Platinum, on the other hand, is very low maintenance and it requires nearly no upkeep at all. It is much tougher than white gold so can withstand great wear, but is also a joy to work with; a very fine finish can be achieved with platinum which is one of the reasons it is found used in many intricate antique pieces of jewellery. Because it is a tougher metal, we would recommend against wearing it beside gold - i.e. in a ring stack. As the rings rub against each other, over time the platinum will 'eat' into the much softer gold.
Our Petite Diamond Cuff is made from lightweight 18ct gold; it is flexible enough to slip onto a wrist and fit securely without needing an additional clasp.
Traditionally, platinum was always considered the most precious metal - it was always at the upper end of the scale. However, in the current market, the price of 18ct gold has taken over, meaning that it is personal preference, rather than price, that might dictate which metal to choose.
Our Twinkle Twinkle diamond earrings are set in 18ct white gold; earrings rarely need to be re-plated as they're generally safe from abrasion in the course of daily wear.
If you have a loupe handy, platinum is stamped "950". White gold will be stamped "375" for 9ct (this indicates that 37.5% of the alloy is gold), "575" for 14ct (57.5%) and "750" for 18ct (75%). If you're shopping online, just to make it extra confusing, American (and Americanised) brands spell gold carat with a K, while we spell ours with a C. Spoiler alert: they're exactly the same!
Whether you have a piece you need checked, or your collection needs a little TLC, just drop us a line to email@example.com and we'd be delighted to take a look!