Metal Guide

Precious Metals

Gold

Gold is rust, corrosion, and tarnish resistant. It is an element that is naturally found in a yellow color.

White Gold is commonly made by adding nickel, zinc, or silver to the gold. Even then jewelry that is white gold is extremely likely to have a rhodium plating over it. Rhodium plating is what makes it appear that bright white/silver color.

Rose Gold is made by adding a higher content of copper. Rose Gold most closely resembles copper.

Each of the colors can vary depending on the alloys to achieve the different colors. Because of this you will sometimes see a gold that is more golden than a piece next to it may be.

Platinum

Platinum unlike White Gold, is its white color all the way through, it will not fade or change color. The metal used for platinum is usually 90-95% pure. It is heavier and more expensive than white gold.

It is important to mention that platinum takes on its own look as it is worn. It takes on a look best described as “dings” or scratches, while this can be buffed out, it will continue to wear the same once you begin wearing it again. While some don’t mind it or think it makes it unique, there are many that find it unfavorable.

Palladium

Palladium is one of the rarest metals and is part of the platinum family. It is silver in color and very resistant to corrosion and oxidation.

Palladium is lighter than platinum. It is also hypoallergenic.

Sterling Silver

Sterling Silver is standard for high quality silver jewelry. Mixed with alloys to add strength and durability, sterling silver is 92.5% pure silver and is sometimes marked on the jewelry piece as .925.

Care should be taken when using chemicals as it can damage the silver. It is also recommended not to wear it in chlorinated water.

Silver will tarnish depending on the environment it is in. Tarnish is removable by bringing your item in to be buffed and polished or by specially formulated cloths/solutions.

Rhodium

Rhodium plating is often used on top of white gold pieces. Rhodium helps protect the item and adds a glossy look. Rhodium is also what make your white gold piece look the very white color that it does. It is sometimes used as an anti-tarnish coating on top of silver.

Rhodium plating will eventually wear off. Your lifestyle will make a large difference in how quickly your item will need to be re-coated.

Rhodium plating is sometimes referred to as dipping.

Contemporary Metals

Serinium®

Serinium® tough, hard and scratch-resistant. Serinium® is twice as hard as Cobalt Chrome, 5 times harder than Titanium, 6 times harder than Platinum, 7 times harder than Gold and 9 times harder than Silver. Serinium® will never oxidize, tarnish, or lose color.

Emergency Removal
Serinium® is easily and safely removed in emergencies by applying pressure with hand held vise grips. It will not bend in the removal process and breaks off cleanly in 2-3 pieces with no sharp edges.


Color
Serinium® is a silver-white color, nearer in color to Platinum than any other contemporary metal.

Tungsten

Tungsten Carbide is commonly created from an alloy of 80% elemental tungsten and 20% carbon alloyed with other metals, proprietary elements vary.

Tungsten is scratch resistant, but can be shattered if hit just right.

Tungsten Carbide is extremely scratch-resistant, heavy and hard, but brittle. Susceptible to oxidation and accidental breakage.


Emergency Removal
Tungsten Carbide is too hard to cut and must be broken off, but tends to shatter into sharp pieces that can cause further injury.


Color
Tungsten Carbide is gray in color and can hold a polish until it oxidizes, which happens from exposure to air. When oxidized, it turns a dark, milky, gray-blue color. It is hard to polish to original state.

Colbolt

Colbolt is four times harder than platinum but is less dense. It is scratch resistant and chip resistant, as well as hypoallergenic.

Cobalt Chrome is less scratch-resistant than Serinium® and Tungsten Carbide, but more scratch-resistant than Titanium, Stainless Steel and precious metals.


Emergency Removal
Cobalt is the most difficult jewelry ring to remove in emergency situations. Cobalt cannot be broken off and cannot be cut with basic metal cutting implements, but rather requires diamond cutting tools and a trained professional. Extremely high heat is generated during the cutting process, which can cause 3rd degree burns to the wearer’s hand.


Color
Cobalt is a silver-white color, similar to Platinum.

Stainless Steel

Stainless steel is rust and stain resistant, as well as corrosion resistant. It is an alloy of iron and carbon containing 12%+ of chromium.


Stainless Steel is harder than Silver and lightweight, but will scratch easily.


Emergency Removal
Stainless Steel is quite difficult to remove in emergencies. Stainless Steel will not break off and cannot be cut with basic metal cutting implements, but rather requires diamond cutting tools and a trained professional. Extremely high heat is generated during the cutting process, which can cause 3rd degree burns to the wearer’s hand.


Color
Typically Stainless Steel is significantly darker than White Gold, but still slightly whiter than Tungsten Carbide.

Copper

Copper is known as a reddish brown color. It is sometimes used as a base metal and coated with another metal like silver. While this may make the piece less expensive, the coated metal will wear off and you will be left with a copper item instead of a silver or gold item.

Copper is sometimes believed to have healing properties, relieve symptoms of arthritis, and help with circulation issues.

Titanium

Titanium is a dark silver gray color. It is a hard material but is also very light.

Titanium is lightweight, harder than Silver but much softer than Serinium®, Cobalt and Tungsten Carbide, so it scratches easily. Will not tarnish or break.


Emergency Removal
Titanium is quite difficult to remove in emergency situations. Titanium cannot be broken off or cut with basic metal cutting implements, but rather requires diamond cutting tools and a trained professional. Extremely high heat is generated during the cutting process, which can cause 3rd degree burns to the wearer’s hand.


Color
Titanium is slightly lighter in color than Tungsten Carbide.