Platinum vs White Gold  

Here’s what you and your customers should know about these popular white metals. 

White precious metals are an excellent option when it comes to fine jewelry. It complements diamonds and gemstones perfectly, regardless of color and the wearer’s skin tone. According to The Knot’s 2021 Jewelry & Engagement Study, a vast majority of engagement rings are made with some form of white metal, primarily platinum and white gold, as opposed to other colors of metal. 

As jewelers, we understand the basic differences between the two, but what do these differences mean to the ones working with the metals as well as the consumer making the purchase? Let’s break down the basics of platinum vs. white gold. 

What is Platinum? 

Platinum is a naturally white, precious metal. Its alloys — being 95% pure platinum — are known for purity of composition. This leads to it being the most hypoallergenic metal used in fine jewelry as it is the least likely to irritate the skin. 

Platinum is also known as a premium precious metal. It is 30 times rarer than gold and comes at a higher price point for the consumer.

Finally, one of the largest benefits of platinum is its durability. It has a reputation for being the most trusted metal for securing stones. The metal has high ductility, which means it will not stress corrode or thin with years of wear. While platinum scratches like any other material, metal is not lost when it is scratched. It simply moves around the point of contact and over time develops a characteristic called a patina, which gives it a desirable, heirloom appeal.

From a bench jeweler perspective, platinum is a little more difficult to work with and requires a separate set of tools. To learn more about the specifics, check out our article on things to keep in mind when working with platinum

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What is White Gold? 

Unlike its naturally white counterpart, white gold is created by mixing other white metals — such as nickel — with yellow gold. It is then coated in a plating of rhodium to give it the bright white shine. This coating also allows the color of the metal to stay consistent regardless of the quality that is chosen. While the rhodium plating does provide durable protection to the white gold, it wears over time and needs to be re-plated. 

As a metal, white gold is easier to work with and doesn’t require a separate set of tools. 

Additionally, white gold pieces are generally more price-friendly for the end consumer. 

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Working With Quality 

As you can see, both metals provide a different set of features and benefits to both the jeweler and the consumer. It’s all about personal preference. However, the key to both is using the best quality materials. That’s why Stuller only provides SCS-certified 100% recycled fabricated platinum and gold. You can count on Stuller to be your source for high-quality materials when creating one-of-a-kind, meaningful pieces. 

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