Updated: Nov 5, 2021
Gold-filled and gold plated
What's a ¨gold-filled¨ jewel?
Gold-filled is one of the most common finishing touches on our earrings, necklaces, back necklaces and bracelets. This name comes from a technique originating in the United States and refers to the thickest possible gold plating. Unlike gold plating, gold-filled has a layer of gold that penetrates deeply and forms a thick, solid shell on the base of the jewelry. This finish therefore tends to be more durable and resistant.
What's gold plating?
Gold plating consists in applying a thin layer of gold on the base of the jewel. In France, this layer corresponds to a minimum thickness of 3 microns of gold deposited on a resistant metal which can be copper, zinc, brass or silver. Gold-plated jewelry has the advantage of looking like pure gold with the advantage of being much less expensive. Please note that there is a third type of gold plating, fine gold plating, which is an even finer layer of gold.
How to take care of my gold-filled and gold-plated jewelry ?
Gold-plated and gold-filled jewelry can tarnish and flake over time, so it needs special attention from time to time. As far as cleaning is concerned, care is taken to remove dust and potential marks by gently rubbing the surface of the jewelry with a cotton ball or a soft microfiber cloth. The latter will also add shine to the metal. When your jewelry starts to tarnish, you can soak your jewelry for a few minutes in hot soapy water and then rub it with your fingers or a soft brush. Avoid using sponges that are too abrasive and jewelry cleaners or antibacterial soaps that may contain harmful components. Finally, to avoid scratches and knots, we wrap our jewelry in their pouches or in individual boxes.
Silver 925 and rhodium
When we talk about a silver jewel, there are several possible finishing touches. At Atelier Lilac, we use three types of finishes in silver color, 925 silver, rhodium plated and silver plated.
What's 925 Silver?
Silver 925/1000th also called solid silver is a precious metal widely used in jewelry. It is composed of 92.5% pure silver and 7.5% of other metals, most often copper. This combination makes the silver harder and easier to work with. Most of the chains used in the making of our silver necklaces, bracelets and earrings as well as the bases of our silver earrings are made of solid silver.
How to take care of my 925 silver jewelry?
Non-rhodium plated silver is bound to tarnish and blacken over time, it is inevitable. Its oxidation is a natural phenomenon that occurs only on the surface of the material and does not alter the quality of the product. The acidity of the wearer's skin is one of the factors that accelerate the aging process. Fortunately, it is very easy to restore its shine by cleaning it regularly with a soft cloth or chamois. You can also use a product adapted for silverware, available in supermarkets. Finally, avoid wearing your jewelry in the shower or putting it in contact with chemicals. If it has been in contact with water, be sure to wipe it clean.
Silver-plated and rhodium-plated
There is a silver plating that allows to have a finish similar to 925 silver with the advantage of being more resistant and less prone to oxidation, it is the rhodium plating. Truth is, the color tone is not as clear as that of silver jewelry, however rhodium-plated jewelry does not blacken with time or contact with skin or other altering substances.
Finally, comes the silver bath that we use only for our barrettes and elastics. We coat our bronze structures with a layer of silver to obtain that smooth, silver finish.
How to take care of silver-plater jewelry?
Gold, silver and rhodium baths do not last forever. They tend to wear out with time, rubbing and shocks. For this reason, it is important to avoid anything that could erode the coating. As for gold baths, we recommend soaking your jewelry in hot water with a little soap, then wiping it gently. Right after, to gain shine, we invite you to rub your jewelry with a soft chamois leather.
What's to remember:
Keep your jewelry in its original individual packaging.
Avoid chemical products, such as perfumes, creams, shower gels ...
To keep your jewelry sparkling, avoid contact with water such as in the pool or the sea.
Remember to remove your jewelry during your workouts and before going to sleep.