GOLD VERMEL VS. GOLD FILLED

Through my experience with high street accessories, most of them are so easy to tarnish and unfriendly to sensitive skin (unfortunately I had so many bad memories of it). So I wanted to tell you the reason why at LuvLoops we chose Gold Vermeil and Gold Filled products and how you should choose jewelry pieces for yourself.

Some of you might realize that at LUVLOOPS we sell both Gold Vermeil and Gold-Filled jewelry pieces. You may wonder why do we do this and I would like to answer this question by introducing you what’s the difference between Gold Vermeil and Gold-Filled jewelry.

 

First of all, what is Gold Vermeil?

Gold vermeil, or just vermeil (pronounced "ver-may"), is a term used to refer to jewelry or other items made of silver and coated with gold. That's really a simple explanation, isn't it? Don't worry, we are going to carry on with more details : )

 

Carrying on, how is Gold Vermeil made?

Vermeil jewelry is made by first creating the base of the item out of silver and then plating it with a layer of gold. The method used to cover the surface of the piece with gold is called electrolysis. Gold vermeil can be made with the gold of varying purity. The minimum requirement for a piece of jewelry to be considered vermeil is to be plated with gold that is at least 10 karats (which corresponds to approximately 42% gold content). All LUVLOOPS selections are 18K Gold Plated which means they all contain at least 75% gold in their coats.

And then, what is Gold-Filled?

Gold-filled (also known as rolled gold) comprises a solid brass (copper and zinc) core over which gold is mechanically bonded using heat and pressure. Gold-filled items must contain, by law, 5% or 1/20 of gold by weight. The gold used is generally 12K or 14K, although I have seen some 10K gold-filled items too. All our gold-filled findings are 14K.

 

What do you mean by 12K, 14K, or 18K?

It means how much gold actually contained in your jewelry pieces.

24 karat = 100% gold
Too soft for fine jewelry
22 karat = 91.7% gold
Too soft for fine jewelry
18 karat = 75.0% gold
Ideal for fine jewelry
14 karat = 58.3% gold
Ideal for fine jewelry
10 karat = 41.7% gold
Ideal for fine jewelry
14k/20 Gold filled = 5% gold
Ideal for fine jewelry
Gold vermeil = 0.5-1% gold
Not suitable for fine jewelry
Gold plated = 0.05% gold
Not suitable for fine jewelry

 

 

The difference between Gold Vermeil vs. Gold-Filled 

The main difference between vermeil and gold-plated/gold-filled jewelry is the base metal. Apart from Gold Vermeil, Gold-Filled and Gold-Plated normally use brass, copper, or nickel as the base metal. 

For this reason, vermeil jewelry can be more valuable than comparable gold-plated or gold-filled items made with a cheaper base metal or alloy.

 

Some people have allergic reactions to certain types of plating. The most common is nickel-plating-  possibly up to 10% of people react to nickel. Unfortunately, nickel is used to color gold, as an alloy, and sometimes in the electroplating process. If the allergy is a problem, most jewelry makers like to use surgical steel, sterling silver, vermeil, or gold-filled items. The plating on plain electroplated items is usually too thin. LuvLoops collections are all sterling silver based and 18K Gold Plated, which provides a very safe base as well as the coat for sensitive people.

Why don’t you provide a bigger range of jewelry collection in gold-filled? 

This question has been asked so many times by myself as well. We would definitely love to bring a bigger range of products in gold filled. However, the reason why we are not doing it is that gold-filled cannot be cast. Casting means pouring molten material into a mold to create a certain shape. This can be easily done with metals such as silver or gold. Melting or soldering gold-filled would not retain the gold layers over the inner brass core. That’s why all gold-filled products are made from sheet, tube, or wire that retain the separate layers of brass and gold. This means a lot of my designs and ideas would be impossible to achieve with gold-filled. Plus, gold-filled technology only exists in a limited amount of countries so getting the right resource is also a big challenge. 

There are only less than 6 manufactures in the USA who make gold-filled so that all the gold-filled jewelry pieces we have are from the USA.

A good alternative to gold-filled is gold vermeil.

At LuvLoops, all the Gold Vermeil products are sterling silver plated with 18K or even 22K gold. There is an e-coating to ensure your jewelry from us last longer than the normal Gold Vermeil Jewellery.

At this stage, you may wonder how long can vermeil jewelry last

Well, it depends on the thickness of its gold plating. The thicker the item’s top layer of gold, the longer it will take for it to wear away. The karat of the gold layer is also related to the piece’s durability: The higher the karat number of the plating, the softer the gold alloy is, and the easier it will be for the surface to scratch. Besides it also depends on how you use your jewelry every day, are you wearing them to shower, or do you apply heavy perfumes to damage their surface? Know your jewelry can definitely help it to last longer. Treasure them with the way they would like to be treated and then they will shine for many years more to come.

Even a lot of Jewelry sellers have been educated the market with Gold-Filled jewelry pieces don't tarnish, but unfortunately, this is wrong. The most common causes of tarnishing are: oxidation, exposure to sulfur, differing body chemistries, and exposure to perfume, hairspray, cleaning agents, etc. Taking care of your jewelry and proper storage are the best methods to avoid tarnishing.

Can I wear my Vermeil jewelry from LuvLoops to water?

The short answer is YES, but...

Gold Vermeil is a thick coating of 18ct gold over sterling silver. Although Gold Vermeil will not tarnish like silver, it may become dirty and fade slightly with wear. However, you won't believe how long your gold will last if you follow our simple golden rules (If you have purchased any jewelry pieces from LuvLoops, simply just follow our care card that contained in your package :) and here are some steps in case you need them before you start your journey with LuvLoops

  • Store your jewelry in your fabric pouch when it’s not being worn.
  • Do not wear your jewelry overnight (having your sleep without any jewels also benefits your sleeping quality)
  • Potions and lotions will corrode the gold coating over time, so always put Jewellery on after applying perfume
  • Wear rubber gloves when cleaning as bleach and harsh chemicals can thin the gold overlay

 

I hope this blog post was helpful!

The LuvLoops customer happiness team is all about helping you make the right decision when buying jewelry online, and I wish everything above was informative for you! Can you now say that you understand the difference between different gold products? If not, or there is anything unclear to you simply leave us a comment down below or drop us an email at hello@luvloops.co.uk and we will get back to you within 24 hours.

 

1 comment

Zoe

Such in informative post! Always wondered the difference, and you explained it so well! ❤️

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