If you are a jewelry enthusiast, you may have heard the rumors about silver damaging gold. Is there any truth behind this myth? Should you keep gold pieces separate from the silver pieces because of the risk of damage? Can you stack gold and silver jewelry?
Can you layer gold with silver without the metals rubbing on each other the wrong way?
Keep reading to find out all you need to know about wearing gold and silver jewelry together and what may or may not happen when these two metals are in contact with each other.
Can you layer gold with silver? Will this cause damage?
The old rules of accessorizing and metal types aside, stacking jewelry isn’t always the best idea because the types of metals used for the jewelry notwithstanding, two pieces of metal against each other will have scratches because of friction.
Well, the only safe metal that you can stack with others without worrying about scratches or chipping is platinum. Platinum is the hardest metal on the periodic table, and you can’t really damage platinum.
Back to gold and (sterling) silver, both of these metals scratch easily because they are significantly soft, and their hardness cannot be compared to that of metal like platinum.
That said, it’s important to note that if you care about the value and the longevity of your jewelry, then you have to really treasure it. This would mean not stacking your expensive gold or silver jewelry.
Both sterling silver and gold are soft metals, but gold is harder than silver, which means that the gold would scratch your silver jewelry.
Sterling silver has a 2.5 hardness level on the MOHs scale, while the hardness of gold ranges from around 2.8 for 18k gold and between 3-4 for yellow gold, while white gold’s hardness ranges from 2.8- 4.0.
These are small differences in hardness, but these small differences could cause some damage.
Why Does silver not damage gold?
From the information above on the hardness of sterling silver and types of gold, it is impossible for silver to damage gold, and if there is any damage, it will be as a result of the gold rubbing on the silver the wrong way.
So, if you are wondering if silver can damage gold, the answer is no. Silver isn’t harder or tougher than gold, which means that it will not damage the gold.
Metals like tungsten and platinum will, however, damage gold because they are harder than gold. Platinum’s hardness level reads 4-4.5 on the Mohs scale, and tungsten has a 7.5 MOHs hardness level.
And if you are considering tungsten carbide, then you are looking at a hardness level of between 8.5 and 9. Tungsten and platinum are, without doubt, significantly harder than gold, which means that they could damage gold (and other softer metals) quite easily.
Tips for wearing gold and silver together
The good news is that even with the differences in hardness levels, you can wear gold and silver jewelry together. In this section, we’ll share how you can do that to ensure a balanced style and for the protection of your jewelry.
Wearing gold and silver jewelry together allows you to enjoy the best of both worlds.
Both metals are quite beautiful, with gold oozing elegance and class thanks to its stylish natural nature and because of its timelessness, and silver bringing in a cool, versatile vibe.
Wearing the two metals will allow you to look quite glamorous, and you won’t have to worry about breaking the bank.
Remember that if you love jewelry, breaking the rules, and trying different things, these tips will work well for you.
- Try out mixed metal pieces for the desired look/ feel.
The jewelry stores you visit will have several mixed metal pieces of jewelry, meaning that you won’t have to worry about mixing the metals, only for you to look tacky.
If you are trying out a different style and aren’t sure about how the metal mixing will work out for you, the mixed metal jewelry pieces might be a good place for you to start.
- Always insist on quality.
To get the most out of your jewelry, the most important thing to do when shopping is to buy high-quality pieces of jewelry.
Buying high-quality jewelry starts with you understanding the different types of gold and sterling silver jewelry, which makes them different from each other, as well as the quality markings on the jewelry.
If you are buying gold jewelry, for example, you should know that solid gold jewelry is expensive, and it will be marked with 14k or 18k or even 22k.
But the affordable gold jewelry is often made of a gold plating, and it may have a marking like 18KGP or 14KGP to show that it is made of a gold plating and not solid gold.
If you see 925 gold, you are looking at gold plated sterling silver. However, authentic sterling silver jewelry will have the 925 hallmark (with or without the Sterling Silver engraving).
Most sterling silver pieces have the 925 Sterling Silver hallmark.
- Don’t overdo the jewelry.
You’ll be tempted to wear a few too many pieces of gold or silver jewelry, but you must fight the temptation.
Too many pieces overwhelm the eyes and are overcrowding.
Instead, focus on the key areas when mixing, for example, ears, neck, or wrists.
- Throw in some color
Once you’ve been able to balance the gold and silver jewelry combination, you can go ahead and add a twist to the look by throwing in some dash of color.
Just ensure that the selected color complements both the silver and gold elements.
- Same size, theme, and design
Want to pull off the silver and gold jewelry combo seamlessly?
Always opt for jewelry made in the same theme, size, and with similar design features.
Working with jewelry made with similar elements is important because it creates symmetry and makes you look well put together.
- Look for inspiration
Want to pull off the perfect gold and silver jewelry combinations? Look for inspiration.
From Pinterest to all your social media accounts to Google, it is impossible not to find inspiration.
Be open to new ideas and stick with what works.
Silver doesn’t damage gold jewelry, and yes, you can wear jewelry made of the two metals together.
You only need to figure out what works for you and what doesn’t.