THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT GOLD PLATING


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Gold plating is a process where a thin layer of gold is applied to the surface of another metal. The main reasons for gold plating are aesthetics (i.e., to make something look gold) or functionality (i.e., to prevent tarnish).


There are a few things you should know about gold plating before you decide to take the plunge:



1- WHAT DOES GOLD PLATED MEAN IN JEWELRY?


Gold-plated jewelry is made by covering a base metal with a thin layer of gold. The thickness of the gold layer varies, but it is typically between 0.5 and 2.5 microns. Electroplating is the most common method used to create gold-plated jewelry. An electric current passes through a solution containing gold ions in this process. The ions are attracted to the jewelry piece, which causes them to bond with the surface of the base metal. The result is a thin, even layer of gold.



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2- WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN GOLD-PLATED AND SOLID GOLD?


Gold-plated jewelry has a thin layer of gold applied to the surface, while solid gold jewelry is made entirely out of gold. Gold-dipped jewelry is an affordable way to enjoy the look of solid gold without the high price tag. However, remember that gold-plated jewelry will not last as long as solid gold jewelry and may need replating over time.




3- WHICH METALS CAN BE GOLD PLATED?


Most metals, including nickel, brass, stainless steel, silver, and copper, can be gold-plated. 



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4- DOES GOLD PLATED MEAN FAKE?


No, gold-plated does not necessarily mean fake. Gold plating is the process of applying a thin layer of actual gold over other metals like silver, copper, and brass. The thickness of the layer may vary depending on the manufacturer. While this thin layer of gold does not have the same value as 100% pure gold, it still has a value. The purity of the gold plating is usually measured in karat weight, which usually ranges from 10 to 18 Karat.


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5- IS ELECTROPLATED GOLD REAL GOLD?


Yes, electroplated gold is real gold. The process of electroplating involves coating a thin layer of gold onto another metal, such as copper or silver, through electrical currents. This gives the piece an overall gold appearance and can be mistaken for solid gold. However, it does not contain nearly as much actual gold content. 

 

6. HOW THICK IS GOLD PLATING?


The thickness of gold plating can range from.17 to 2.5 microns.


Gold electroplated, or gold wash/flash plating, refers to plating with a thickness of around .17. This plate is a skinny layer (approximately 0.05 percent gold). This layer of plating fades the quickest.
The optimal gold plating thickness is between.5 and 1.0 microns. While this may be a tiny layer, it is sufficient even for jewelry exposed to heavy usage.


Heavy gold plating is a plating that is thicker than 2.5 microns. However, even this amount of gold plating is still relatively thin in terms of value. The main advantage of thick gold plating is that it lasts longer.



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7. DOES GOLD-PLATED METAL TARNISH? WILL GOLD PLATING WEAR OFF?


Over time, gold plating can fade and tarnish, losing its shine and brightness. This reaction is typical and can occur regardless of the piece's quality. Many people, however, are perplexed as to why gold-plated jewelry tarnishes. After all, isn't gold a non-corroding, non-rusting metal?


The issue is frequently not with the plating but with the base metal, which is prone to corrosion and oxidation. The base metal molecules gradually migrate into the gold layer, changing its look. If the gold plating is too thin, it will quickly discolor and begin to tarnish.



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8. DOES GOLD-PLATED JEWELRY RUST?


No, the gold plating does not rust. However, the base metal underneath the gold plating can rust if it is exposed to moisture. If you notice your gold-plated jewelry starting to tarnish, it's probably because the base metal is showing through.




9. IS GOLD-PLATED HYPOALLERGENIC?


The jury is out on this one! Gold-plated jewelry can be a great option for those with allergies, but it’s not always the perfect solution. The gold plating generally provides an extra layer of protection between your skin and the base metal, which means less contact with potential irritants. However, it’s worth noting that gold-plated jewelry won’t last as long as pure gold pieces, meaning you may need to replace it more often. And unfortunately, the plating can wear off over time, leaving the original metal exposed and potentially causing problems for those with allergies. 



10. WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF GOLD PLATING?


  • Gold plating gives jewelry a more vibrant and luxurious appearance.


  • You can also use it to protect the jewelry from tarnishing and prevent skin reactions.


  • Gold-plated jewelry is also often more affordable than solid gold jewelry.



11. HOW TO PREVENT GOLD PLATED JEWELRY FROM RUBBING OFF?


You can extend the life of gold-dipped jewelry and keep it bright and beautiful by properly caring for it. Here are some suggestions:


  • Keep chemicals, oils, and cosmetics away from gold-plated jewelry. After applying makeup, hairspray, and perfumes, it's best to put on your plated jewelry last. Remove gold-plated jewelry when doing chores since the chemicals in soaps, detergents, and cleaners can damage the plating.


  • When handling gold-dipped jewelry, it's best to wash your hands before placing them on the jewelry.


  • You should not expose gold-plated jewelry to chlorinated or salty water. Remember, there is no such thing as gold waterproof jewelry. Even pure gold loses its shine when exposed to water. So, before swimming in pools, hot tubs, or the sea, take off your jewelry.


  • Body oils and sweat can damage gold plating; to avoid this, clean or wipe jewelry down regularly to remove pollutants. Cleaning your gold-plated jewelry regularly will help it last longer. When doing this, use a light liquid soap and warm water. Avoid using abrasive cleaning solutions or strong chemicals.


  • Avoid rubbing and friction with plated jewelry, as this will cause the piece to wear down. This friction can happen when you layer gold-plated jewelry, and the pieces rub against each other.


  • When storing gold-dipped jewelry, it's essential to keep it in a cool and dry place. Avoid storing gold in humid areas such as the bathroom. It's also best not to store multiple pieces of jewelry together since they can rub against each other and damage the gold plating.




12. HOW LONG DOES GOLD PLATED JEWELRY LAST?


The longevity of gold-plated pieces depends on several factors, including the thickness of the gold; the thicker the gold layer, the longer it will last.


Another factor is the type of plating. Flash gold plating will fade quicker than electroplating. Flash gold plating is a thin layer of gold applied to the surface of another metal. The gold is heated until it liquefies and bonds with the metal underneath. This type of plating is often used on costume jewelry and is not as durable as electroplating.


After about a year, you can expect light wear and tear with regular use. However, if you take care of your jewelry and avoid exposing it to chemicals or water, the gold plating can last several years.




13. IS GOLD DIPPED THE SAME AS GOLD PLATED?


No, gold dipped and gold plated are not the same. Gold dipped is a process in which a plater dips a piece of metal in gold, creating a very thin layer of gold on the surface of the metal. Gold plating is a process where a very thin layer of gold is applied to the surface of another piece of metal using an electrical current. The resulting layer of gold is much thicker than that created with the gold-dipped process. Because of this, gold-plated jewelry is more likely to retain its finish and color over time than gold-dipped jewelry.




14. WHICH GOLD-PLATED JEWELRY IS BEST?


First, if you are looking for gold-plated jewelry that will last a long time, choosing a piece with a thick layer of gold plating is important. The thicker the layer of gold, the more resistant it will be to wear and tear.


Next, it is also important to consider the metal underneath the gold plating. Some metals, such as nickel, can cause skin irritation. For example, choosing gold-plated jewelry with a hypoallergenic metal such as silver underneath the gold plating is best if you have sensitive skin.


Finally, consider the purity of the gold when choosing gold-plated jewelry. The higher the karat, the less likely the metal is to tarnish. However, 24 & 22 karat gold plating is very soft and is not durable enough for jewelry use. If you want an affordable option with more durability, go with 18-karat gold plating.



15. HOW DO YOU CLEAN GOLD-PLATED JEWELRY?


The best way to clean gold-plated jewelry is to use a little soap and water. Just make sure you don't soak the piece in water for too long, or use harsh chemicals or abrasives, as this can damage the delicate layer of gold. Once you've cleaned your jewelry, simply dry it off with a soft cloth. And that's all there is to it!




16. IS GOLD PLATED GOOD?


Yes, gold plating can be a good way to enhance the look of jewelry. It can also help to protect the underlying metal from tarnish and wear. However, it is important to note that gold plating can wear away over time. Therefore, it is important to take care of gold-plated jewelry and avoid exposing it to chemicals or abrasives that may corrode the gold layer over time.




WRAPPING UP


We hope you enjoyed this guide on gold plating. Gold plating is a great way to enhance the look of jewelry and other metal objects. However, it is important to take care of gold-plated items and avoid exposing them to chemicals or abrasives that may damage the delicate layer of gold. Thanks for reading!