Last Updated on May 6, 2020 by Janie Wilson
When it comes to the inexperienced, it gets very hard to know which is good and which is not. The same situation can happen with which is better when it comes to white gold vs silver.
The story does not end here, the two materials that look exactly the same are very different from each other. They’re like twins, they look the same, but their characteristics are completely opposite.
Looking for jewelry that is hued silver? Here is all that you need to be aware of.
White Gold vs Silver: What’s The Difference?
Decision making gets easier when you know what kind of jewels you are looking for. Research through, it will not be that difficult to decide.
Some things are meant to be worn forever, like a promise ring. You canâ€™t let go of them of course. But, white gold is a much better choice because of its high durability and long resistance to wear. Being resistant to corrosion and rust, silver jewels are softer and easier to scratch.
Everything that looks good costs more. The same applies to white jewelry. The high shelf life and durability adds up to the metalâ€™s price tag. Whereas silver comes among the category of those jewels that are affordable for most. Thus, making it perfect for occasional wear. But, white gold costs much more than silver, but not as much as platinum. Hence, it comes under affordable metals.
Maintenance & Care
Like every piece of ornament, white gold and silver both need some kind of maintenance. White gold is usually coated with rhodium, which wears out or fades to yellow. It may need the reapplication of rhodium once every few years. Thereby keeping the charm of the jewel alive and restoring the finishing.
Whereas silver requires regular polishing and cleaning to prevent it from tarnishing. Moreover, the plus point about sterling silver is that it may tarnish, but it will never rust. So that can be an extra positive point about it. Whichever jewel you decide to buy, remember to ask your jeweler to polish it once or twice a year.
White gold is an alloy. A metal that’s made by mixing two different kinds of metals. Hence, to increase its strength and resistance to corrosion of gold. The pure gold gets mixed with alloy metals, which are towards the shade of silver and white, such as silver. See some of the best while gold jewelry!
Mixing- Better Durability
Pure gold has to be mixed with other metals, which are harder, to improve durability. Gold on its own is a soft metal. It would bend out of its shape if it’s used alone without any other metal.
Despite being mixed with another alloy metal, gold gets coated with rhodium. It belongs to the same family tree as platinum. It adds strength, durability, and the most important of all, it makes the surface lustrous. Rhodium is an ideal material for coating jewels.
With every good thing comes a drawback as well. One of them is that white gold starts appearing yellow after a while, but do not worry. It happens because of the environmental factors such as pH levels of your skin, soaps, and toiletries that you use. Or anything that your pice of jewelry comes in contact with. It can be resolved by recoating the jewels often.
Real or Fake?
Although white gold contains alloy metals, it’s made from real gold. The hallmark on the jewels will enable you to identify whether it is original or fake. A hallmark is a symbol that certifies the jewelry as authentic.
Content of Gold
You can measure the content of gold in a jewel in karats. Despite the type of gold, it is. It is usually expressed using the letter K. For instance, 18k or 9k. Gold that is 18k consists of seventy-five percent of pure gold. But, 9k gold only consists of 37.5 percent pure gold. In short, the bigger the amount of weight in karat would be, the more will be the gold present in it.
Pros of White Gold
- White gold is the best choice of metal for those who want jewelry that appears silver and not yellow.
- It is a beautiful, precious metal. The appearance of white gold is somewhat the same as platinum and silver. But, it is more affordable than silver when it comes to the price tag. It is a lot harder when wearing it compared to silver.
- The neutral color of the metal makes it look good with every set of gemstones. It looks classic and suitable for every occasion.
Cons of White Gold
- The disadvantage of white gold is that it needs to be recoated every few years. As it’s made up of a mixture of rhodium alloys with pure gold.
- Despite the process being cheap, it would keep you from wearing your engagement or wedding ring for a while. It would take time to get it fixed. The continuous services would add up to the cost of your jewelry.
Silver is a versatile material considering the finishes it takes. It can be either bright and white, or oxidized black. A polish, which can be either high or soft satin. Although these kinds of finishes look beyond ethereal when you wear them for the first time, they do not last forever. Rings, especially those that are worn every day, go through a lot of burnishing.
Burnishing makes the rubbing of harder materials against the metals. Thus, making the shiny marks on the jewels. Leading to your ring being covered in tremendous marks. The polished ring will appear matte and the satin ring will become shinier. Long story short, silver always comes between these two changes in finishing. For some, it changes within days, whereas for some, it lasts about only a few months. Depending on the usage.
Pure Silver and Sterling Silver
Sterling silver comprises around 92.5 percent of pure silver. Hence, the remaining percentage comprises of other metals. The remaining 7.5 content is copper. Moreover, a lot of different alloys are also used to improve the properties. Thereby creating the silver being perfect for some projects. The usage of sterling silver is higher than pure silver. It is too costly and softer when it comes to making larger, functioning objects. Silver becomes stronger when it’s alloyed with other metals such as copper. Since sterling is cheaper, let us compare the pros and cons of it. That would make it a lot easier to choose between white gold and silver.
Pros and Cons of Silver
- The most desirable attribute of silver is the luster, and that usually wears out. Hence, the desirable attribute of shine is missing in silver because the glow usually wears down to patina. The surface wears off due to slight scratches and the surface of the metal endures with time. But, this soft patina glow is very well appreciated in jewelry. Some of the makers of jewelry bring about this effect of the weather.
- The biggest con of sterling silver is its low resistance to tarnishing. It’s caused by the effects of the copper alloy gets oxidized when it comes in contact with sulfur, air, and water. The effects increase when the surface of the metal comes in contact with the food that is sulfuric. One of the main keys to preventing the tarnishing of silverware is to wash and dry it immediately. But, it is inevitable to prevent any piece of silver from getting damaged due to the external environment. It needs occasional polishing over a period of time.
As we saw, both jewels, be it silver or white gold have their own advantages and disadvantages. Moreover, despite appearing similar, they both are quite different from each other. Silver, on one hand, is affordable compared to white gold, and it is hypoallergenic. Although it requires careful handling and maintenance compared to white gold. Moreover, white gold is easy to maintain, and it is more durable. But, it is costlier in comparison with silver.
Now that you know about all the reasons behind each aspect, consider them before buying. Since white gold is a long-time investment, unlike silver. It is better to buy white gold, because why go through the hassle of maintenance every now and then when you can go with something more manageable.