How Long Does Gold Filled Jewelry Last? Does gold-filled jewelry tarnish? What would cause it to tarnish?
You may ask these questions when you’re shopping for jewelry, and you noticed the gold piece you’re coveting is out of your price range.
However, you see a gold-filled option that is more affordable, but not cheap either when compared to a gold-plated item.
What’s the difference between pure gold, gold-filled, and other alternatives when it comes to how long they can last? What’s more, how do you know what’s best for you?
Well, we’re here to answer your question best we can. We will also look at how long gold-filled jewelry last so that you can make an informed purchase.
The last thing people want is feeling conned out of their hard-earned cash.
So, first things first, you guys need to know what is exactly gold filled jewelry?
What is Gold-Filled jewelry?
Gold-filled items are popular thanks to their durability. Jewelers have found that if they want to create articles that won’t tarnish quickly over time, adding this layer of gold is one way to do it.
Despite the jewelry not being made entirely from gold, the thickness of precious metal added can, with proper care, last years. That’s possible because gold itself lasts lifetimes. It’s that way of looking at things that makes many willing to spend money on gold-filled jewelry.
The process of making a gold-filled item involves pressure bonding a layer of gold to a base metal.
That is done under extremely high temperatures, which ensures that the gold and the metal underneath are entirely and permanently bonded.
You’ll also find that there is a much thicker layer of gold compared to, for example, coating and cold plating. With that being the case, it will take a lot longer for the base metal to become visible.
The base metal gets typically made from an allow comprised of 90 percent copper and 10 percent brass.
The durability of an item made also is based on the gold-filled construction. There is a single clad, double-clad, and wire clad alternatives.
For the first one, it only means the top part of the jewelry is gold-filled, and the bottom (or inner part) is not.
For the double-clad, it means that the base metal has a gold layer on both sides. Lastly, the wire clad is where a wire is a gold-filled all round.
Given that the entire item is not made from gold, it is this cheaper than the precious metal itself.
Only the price will give it away; otherwise, no one can tell from a glance what metals were used and how the jewelry got made.
Therefore, if you don’t have the cash to dish out for gold, then this is an economical alternative for you.
That said, it would be more expensive than other gold-layering methods because the gold that gets used is much thicker, and not to mention the intensity of the process.
Does gold-filled jewelry tarnish? What would cause it to tarnish?
Gold fill jewelry will tarnish over time. However, the significant factor that will determine the period it takes has to do with how you care for the item.
You need proper care with pure gold, or it will fade or scratch. The same thing goes with the kind of jewelry we’re talking about here.
The fact remains that the gold is on top, and so, you need to give this item the same care as you would your 18k gold item.
The instances in which gold-filled jewelry tarnish is when you wear it in water, and other chemicals are involved.
For example, you ought to take your ornaments when taking a shower and doing any cleaning that includes chemicals. The same goes for swimming. The chlorine in the pool or the hot tub will indeed damage your beloved pieces. It’s all the more a reality when you’re in the ocean.
Cosmetics and skincare products are also the reason why this kind of jewelry won’t last their appointed time. It is still all about the chemicals; when left on, they end up reacting with the item you’re wearing.
The rule is that your jewelry should be the last thing you put on and the first thing you take off when it comes to your skincare routine. That means taking off your ring before applying lotion, waiting for it to absorb, and then put it back on.
The other time you ought to leave your gold-filled jewelry behind is when you’re at the gym.
The sweat will interact negatively with the item you’re wearing, and depending on the equipment you’re using, cause a scratch or dent.
Even so, mistakes do happen, and you wear your jewelry in any of these circumstances described. Later, we’ll give you steps on how to properly care for your jewelry and what to do once they’re exposed to chemicals.
How long does pure gold last?
This one is straightforward. Pure gold lasts forever. That’s why it’s been valuable for millenniums, and not losing its status in both society and the market.
It is why individuals and couples will save up for months and then spend thousands of dollars on a gold ring.
Since they can last lifetimes, they quickly get passed down from generation to another and still be of great value.
How Long Does Gold Filled Jewelry Last?
The nature of gold also makes gold-filled jewelry last a longer time than its counterparts, gold plated jewelry included.
With the care that we’ll talk about, your gold-filled jewelry can last anywhere between 10 to 30 years.
There are a lot of factors, too, including the frequency of wear, the type of cladding used, climate, the nature of your skin, and much more.
Eventually, the gold will fade, and the metal underneath will become visible.
How to Care for Gold Filled Jewelry?
We all want our jewelry to last as long as possible.
Owning something for more than ten years is a huge deal since it speaks of the quality and the timelessness of the same.
Let’s now look at how you can care for your gold-filled jewelry. You can equally apply these tips to your other pieces.
- Avoid wearing your jewelry to swimming pools or the ocean because the chlorine and saltwater will damage them
- When cleaning avoid wearing your jewelry as the detergents and other cleaning products are harsh on the gold
- When dealing with cosmetics and skincare products, wear the jewelry last and take them off when using a cosmetic remover
- To clean your jewelry, put warm water in a bowl, and mix it with mild detergent. Put the pieces in and leave them to soak for five minutes before taking them out
- To get any dirt and debris out that might be present, take off the jewelry out of the soaking bowl, and using an incredibly soft brush, get into every nook and cranny to ensure everything gets out (use this step sparingly as excessive scrubbing can cause the gold to tarnish faster)
- Follow up with rinsing your jewelry under warm running water
- Once done, place it on a soft cloth and pat it dry. Don’t rub as that can cause discoloration
- Use a jewelry cloth to polish your pieces from time to time to keep them shiny and remove any layer of dirt
- Keep your jewelry in a cool place since humidity degrades the metal. That means moving your jewelry box away from direct sunlight in your room
- When storing your jewelry, put each piece in separate airtight bags as rubbing against each other causes them to lose their shine
- No matter how beautiful the jewelry is, avoid touching it even when on the body, as it will cause it to discolor
There is a lot to love about gold-filled jewelry.
You’re not promised a lifetime of wear if it’s something you wear frequently, but 10 to 30 years is quite a long time.
You can, therefore, purchase this excellent gold alternative when you’re jewelry shopping next.