There are 4 basic tiers of gold jewellery: solid gold, gold-filled, gold vermeil, and gold plated.
The majority of our jewellery range is gold filled. Gold filled is different to gold plated in that the layer of gold is very thick, generally 5% of the weight of item is composed of solid gold. Gold plated jewellery is typical costume jewellery and tends to wear and fade more easily compared to gold filled.
Gold filled is absolutely your best option after solid gold for quality and durability. This metal can withstand the forces, if properly cared for. It is waterproof, will not flake off or turn your skin green and offers a great option for people with sensitive skin. Gold filled jewelry is water resistant, but not 100% tarnish resistant.
The longevity of your jewellery will depend on several factors:
Chemical Contact: Please avoid exposing jewellery to chemicals such as fragrances, lotions, skin care, hairspray, harsh/medicated soaps and shampoos, sunscreen, chlorine, or any items containing sulfur. Chemicals react with the base metal and may cause your jewelry to tarnish or lose its luster.
Residue: The natural oils from the skin, as well as skin pH serve as factors that affect the appearance of your jewellery. If you notice your jewellery appearing dull, clean your pieces under warm water and mild soap, once weekly. Pat dry, but do not rub. Please avoid using abrasive fabrics such as towels or clothes to dry your jewellery. A microfiber cloth is gentle and effective. Once a month, you may use a gold-polishing cloth to maintain the luster of your pieces or if you notice any areas looking dull or darkening.
Storage: It is imperative to properly store your jewellery. Again, this goes for all types of metal! While it is appealing to display your shiny pieces in plain view, oxygen in the air may cause oxidation and tarnishing of the gold. It is best to store your pieces in a jewellery box or in the sustainable jewelry pouch that comes with your order. Please keep out of areas of prolonged moisture such as bathrooms.
A few of our pieces are high quality gold vermeil, essentially meaning a thick layer of 14k gold is bonded to, or plated, over a 925 sterling silver base.
A key characteristic of gold vermeil jewelry, compared to gold plated jewelry, is that it is hypoallergenic & non tarnish for a long time due to the sterling silver base metal. However, gold vermeil pieces are not water resistant and the gold plating may wear away over time.
It is therefore key to remove these pieces prior to exposure to water or any chemicals from above. Please follow the same chemical contact, residue, and storage guidelines listed above.