Gold Vermeil vs Gold Plated: What's The Difference?
In this blog, we compare gold vermeil vs gold-plated jewellery. We’ll cover their pros and cons, as well as determine the differences. In addition to this, we’ll offer you some advice on which one you should buy.
What is gold vermeil?
Gold vermeil jewellery like gold plating and consists of a thin gold layer over a base metal. But, gold vermeil jewellery is only plated on sterling silver. It also features a 2.5-micron thick layer of gold.
- Durable - gold vermeil jewellery features a thicker layer of gold over the base metal. This makes it more resistant to daily wear and tear.
- Affordable - gold vermeil jewellery is much more affordable than solid gold jewellery as it uses less gold.
- Appearance - gold vermeil jewellery is indistinguishable from solid gold jewellery pieces. This makes it a great affordable alternative.
- Hypoallergenic - the sterling silver base metal on gold vermeil jewellery is hypoallergenic. This means it won’t cause any skin reactions as the gold layer fades
- Prone to fading - the 2.5-micron thick gold layer on gold vermeil jewellery is still prone to fading. This is especially true with exposure to water, and chemicals in perfumes and soaps.
What is gold plated?
Gold-plated jewellery consists of a very thin layer of gold and a base metal. The base metal can vary from brass, copper, nickel or stainless steel. The layer of gold is less than 0.5 microns thick, meaning that the gold percentage isn’t a calculable amount.
- Appearance - The appearance of gold-plated jewellery is also indistinguishable from solid gold. This makes it an affordable option for those who want to wear gold accessories without the price tag.
- Affordable - gold plated jewellery is much more affordable than solid gold jewellery as it uses less gold.
- Lightweight - gold plated jewellery tends to be lighter in weight than other gold jewellery. This is because it features a thin gold layer over a base metal.
- Durable - Although the gold plating is not durable, the base metal underneath it is. This is especially true for gold-plated pieces that feature a stainless steel base.
- Less durable - the thin gold layer on gold-plated pieces is less durable. This makes it prone to scratching and chipping off with abrasion.
- Prone to fading - gold-plated jewellery is much more prone to fading and tarnishing as the layer of gold is thin. Especially when exposed to chemicals, soaps and perfumes.
- Allergies - once the thin gold layer of gold-plated jewellery wears off, the base metal will be exposed. If the base metal of the jewellery is brass or nickel, it can lead to nickel allergies.
- Maintenance - to keep gold-plated jewellery from losing its plating, careful handling and regular cleaning is required.
Gold Vermeil vs Gold Plated: What’s The Difference?
- Base metal - gold vermeil jewellery features a sterling silver base. Gold-plated jewellery can have a base metal made from copper, brass, nickel or stainless steel.
- Gold thickness - gold vermeil jewellery has a thicker gold layer than gold-plated jewellery. Gold vermeil jewellery has a gold layer of over 2.5 microns, whilst gold-plated jewellery has less than this.
- Durability - gold vermeil jewellery is slightly more durable than gold-plated jewellery. This is because gold vermeil jewellery features a thicker gold layer, as well as a more durable and resistant sterling silver base layer.
- Price - gold vermeil jewellery tends to be more expensive than gold-plated jewellery. This is because it is made up of precious metals including sterling silver and gold. Gold-plated jewellery only features a thin gold layer, and a non-precious base metal.
Gold Vermeil vs Gold Plated: Which One Should You Buy?
When choosing between gold vermeil and gold-plated jewellery, make sure to consider your personal preferences and budget.
Gold Vermeil is better for those who have a greater budget and want a piece that has more gold, has greater value and is more durable.
Gold-plated options are perfect for those looking for an affordable option that looks just like solid gold, whilst still being lightweight and durable.
Now that we have compared gold vermeil vs gold plated jewellery, you should have a better understanding of both. You should be able to distinguish the pros, cons and differences between the two.
In this blog, we learned what gold vermeil and gold-plated jewellery are. Gold vermeil jewellery features a gold layer that is over 2.5 microns thick, around a sterling silver base metal. Gold-plated pieces have a thinner gold layer which is plated over stainless steel, brass, nickel or copper.
The choice between gold vermeil and gold-plated jewellery depends on your budget, preferences and intended uses for the piece. Whether you are looking for the long-lasting characteristics of gold vermeil jewellery, or the affordable allure of gold-plated jewellery, understanding the differences between these two pieces ensures you can make a smart buying decision.
Which is better, gold plated or gold vermeil?
Gold vermeil can be considered a “higher quality” than gold-plated jewellery. This is for a variety of reasons including having a thicker gold layer and using sterling silver as a base metal. Whether gold vermeil or gold-plated jewellery is better for you depends on your personal preferences, styling needs and budget.
Is it worth buying vermeil gold?
Gold vermeil gold jewellery is good for those that want a gold jewellery piece that is affordable in comparison to solid pieces, that will still be resistant to daily wear and tear.
Can I shower with gold vermeil?
You can shower with gold vermeil, however, it is not recommended. Although gold vermeil jewellery has a thicker gold layer, it is still prone to tarnishing and fading with frequent exposure to water, and chemicals from perfumes, soaps and shampoos. We recommend taking your gold vermeil jewellery off before showering to maximise it’s longevity.