Musings of an Obsessed Jeweler and Former Mermaid

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Vermeil is a base of sterling silver that has been gold plated. It is a more expensive option than gold plated, with better quality. Vermeil will not tarnish as fast as the plated, because it has a thicker layer of gold on it. The gold will still wear and eventually the silver will show through.
Gold plated has a thin layer of 10K gold electroplated onto a base metal surface. The base is usually zinc, nickel and copper. The gold layer is much thinner than gold filled wire or Vermeil, and tarnishes much faster than both. If shaped and hammered, it loses its gold color and the base metal will show itself. It is better not to wear your plated jewelry every day, because polishing and exposure to skin salts will wear the gold film off.

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