Platinum Metal vs White Gold


The debate between white gold and platinum metal has been a hot topic for many years now. Each metal has pros and cons, making it difficult to determine the better choice. To help you make a decision, we've put together a comprehensive guide comparing the two metals.


What's Platinum Made Of?


Platinum is considered the most precious metal for jewelry. Platinum is also quite soft and malleable in its purest form, much like gold. Pure platinum is much too soft for jewelry use, so you must combine it with other base metals and alloys to make platinum tougher and more durable. Platinum, unlike gold, is subject to more stringent rules when it comes to combining it with other metals. Platinum typically mixes with similar metals, also known as Platinum Group Metals (PGM). This group includes iridium, palladium, ruthenium, osmium, and rhodium. Base metals are also sometimes used in alloys. Copper and cobalt are the most common base metals.

The least amount of platinum required is 850 out of 1000 parts (85%). Although most countries have set thresholds for platinum purity, most consider anything less than 85 percent not high-grade platinum. Similarly, according to the standard thresholds for platinum purity, if the concentration of pure platinum is less than 50%, it is not considered pure platinum.


What are Some Uses of Platinum Metal?


The uses for platinum metal are numerous, ranging from medicine and industrial to jewelry and chemical engineering.


Is Platinum Gold or Silver? Is Platinum the Rarest Metal?


Platinum, the rarest and most expensive of all precious metals used in jewelry, is also the most costly. Platinum is not a single metal like silver or gold but rather a family of metals with similar characteristics; it is not to be confused with silver or gold. Platinum metals are considered some of Earth's most costly and prestigious precious metals. The platinum family of metals includes platinum, palladium, iridium, osmium, rhodium, and ruthenium.

Almost every metal in the platinum family is used to create ornaments except osmium. In the Platinum Group Metals (PGM), platinum is the most widely used, followed by palladium. In many instances, alloy metals are mixed with the platinum family to prevent tarnishing or improve PGM's strength.


Is Platinum the Same as White Gold? Is Platinum Called White Gold?


No, platinum and white gold are not the same. Contrary to popular belief, white gold is not a completely white metal; it's a mix of metals. Gold is naturally yellow. To make it white, jewelers must use other metal alloys with yellow gold. When white gold is not rhodium plated, it appears grey or even yellowish until plated.

Sometimes, fair amounts of palladium alloy are mixed in to enhance the white gold's gleaming luster. Palladium is a rare and valuable mineral, making it more expensive than white gold, but it's extremely durable and does not require rhodium plating to change its color.

The color of platinum metal, on the other hand, is naturally white and much rarer than white gold. It is not mixed with any metal alloys and maintains its color. The color of the platinum metal will never turn and keeps its white, metallic color.


Is Gold Cheaper than Platinum?


Considering the standard platinum price versus gold today, platinum metal is roughly 40-50% more expensive than white gold because more platinum is required to make a piece due to its density. Platinum metal is far rarer than gold, adding to its premium price tag.

If you compare the costs of both metals based on their price per gram, you won't notice much difference, but because of the different densities and how much metal is required, they are considerably distinct. For example, since white gold is a mix of durable metals, it is far less expensive and more accessible than platinum.

While this is the case, it is not the only consideration. While white gold may be less expensive to acquire at first, keep in mind that it needs replating every five to ten years to retain its hue. Platinum metal is more expensive up front, but replating is less costly in the long run.


Gold vs Platinum Density


Let's begin by saying that platinum and white gold are very dense metals.

Platinum is a more pure metal, and although it is heavier than gold, it is more pliable and susceptible to scratching with time. Because platinum is so highly reflective, it must be polished and cleaned regularly. As a result, maintaining the beautiful look of platinum jewelry is more complicated.


Which One is Better Gold or Platinum?


There are several advantages to white gold and platinum. First, you may choose white gold over platinum for a lower price, greater durability, desire for rhodium plating, or the pure love of gold.

You may wind up liking platinum, on the other hand, because of its purity, status, hypoallergenic qualities, and an appreciation for a patina finish.

It's also crucial to consider other costs when deciding which metal is best for you. For example, consider how a rhodium plating on white gold dazzles with a bright diamond or how a patina finish would complement an opal or another precious stone. The cost of your gemstone will also have a significant influence on the type of metal you select.


Platinum vs. White Gold: Color


The lustrous freshness of white gold & platinum may be challenging to distinguish. You probably won't notice much of a difference in color at first glance. Both metals are sparkling and gleaming white or silvery gray.

White gold has a slightly whiter undertone that may look beautiful if your loved one has fair skin, but these two metals are hard to tell apart.


Platinum vs. White Gold: Finish


The metal finish is where white gold & platinum differ. Over time, white gold retains its gleaming finish. Compared to platinum, it doesn't require polishing as often to maintain its bright shine.

It's worth noting that platinum develops a patina with time. This is a normal response of the metal to oxygen, and your jewelry will need cleaning if you don't like the look of a platinum patina finish. So what is a patina finish on metal? A platinum patina finish develops as a result of regular wear. It is a satiny or slightly frosted appearance. Overall, there is a slight loss of luster on platinum metal jewelry.


Platinum vs. White Gold: Hypoallergenic Properties


Another advantage of platinum is that it is hypoallergenic. It is a naturally white metal, so there's no need to combine it with nickel, which can be an allergen for certain individuals. Nickel is a component of white gold's finish, which can cause an allergic reaction in people with sensitive skin.

If a top layer of rhodium plating coats white gold, it reduces and sometimes even entirely eliminates the contact between the nickel and one's skin. (This plating may wear off over time, resulting in a yellowish color to the metal and necessitating its replating by a jeweler, which can be costly.


Wrapping Up


So, what's the verdict? Which is better white gold or platinum? The answer may depend on your personal preferences and budget. Consider how often you'll wear the jewelry if you want a bright white metal color or prefer the mellower patina finish of platinum. Also, keep in mind that white gold requires rhodium plating every few years, while platinum metal jewelry may need less frequent polishing. But, ultimately, the choice is yours!