Crafting the perfect engagement ring is hard, but you’d think choosing between white gold vs. platinum would be the easy part. Most customers don’t know the difference, so we’re here to help answer all your questions on which metal is best.
White gold and platinum look similar, but there are key differences to be aware of.
First and perhaps most important of all, platinum is a naturally occurring white metal that’s very rare in nature. Even rarer than gold, which makes it more expensive.
White gold does not occur naturally in nature. It’s actually a mixture of yellow gold and a white metal like palladium or silver.
Let’s look at how the differences play out.
What is the difference between white gold and platinum?
There are essentially five differences between white gold vs platinum.
But is one better than the other?
That is entirely up to the buyer. Every jeweler has their own opinion, but a good jeweler won’t force their opinions on the buyer. We like to give customers the proper info, and allow them to decide what’s best.
1. Weight Differences of White Gold and Platinum
Platinum is heavier than white gold. Generally speaking, platinum will be about 1/3 heavier than white gold in weight.
2. Color Differences of White Gold vs Platinum
It’s assumed that platinum appears to look “antiqued” and white gold looks “contemporary”. You actually can’t tell a difference in color on a brand spanking new ring.
The natural forms of white gold and platinum tell a different story, however.
Platinum in its natural form is a chrome-like and very shiny, while white gold is a dull nickel color.
White gold is coated in rhodium (a silvery-white metal) after the yellow gold and white alloy are mixed together. The rhodium finish provides the white/silver color that you see in the engagement rings.
The rhodium layer needs to be replaced every so often, as it does wear off.
Platinum does not need a coating of anything, but will eventually fade into an antiqued look. A platinum band can be shined up to regain the bright white color if the vintage feel isn’t preferred.
3. Cost of White Gold Vs. Platinum
Platinum costs nearly three or four times more than white gold. It costs more because it is rarer and harder to work with.
Price is usually a main deciding factor between white gold vs platinum.
4. Density of White Gold Vs. Platinum
Density is a way to measure strength of a metal and how well it holds up to daily wear and tear.
White gold is a stronger metal than platinum, so it does not nick or scratch as easily. The key difference occurs when a white gold band actually gets scratched.
A scratched 3 cm white gold band becomes a 2.9 cm band when the scratches are buffed out. In other words, you buff it down and lose some of the band.
On the other hand, if you have the same band in platinum, you’ll still have 3 cm left because the platinum is malleable. When buffed, the particles get moved around to fill a hole in another part of the band. A platinum ring doesn’t lose any of the material; it simply moves around.
Some platinum ring owners actually prefer the patina that results from years of wear.
5. The Prestige Factor
This is the big one, and the one that most people think about when they think of the differences. Until the mid 1960’s, almost all engagement rings were cast in platinum. It was almost unheard of for a diamond to be set in white gold.
Today it’s not unusual for a diamond to be set in a variety of different materials. Traditionally, platinum still holds prestige when it comes to the engagement ring.
But with more and more couples moving away from traditions and conventional rings, the prestige factor is becoming less important.
Jonathan’s Jewelers Promise
Customers should know their jeweler and be informed. The relationship you have with your jeweler can be compared to the relationship you are building with your lover.
The jeweler/customer relationship must consist of three things to be successful:
If you can establish those three things, you’ll have a very long and happy relationship with your jeweler.
We spend a lot of time answering questions and educating customers so they have the knowledge to make informed decisions. They feel confident about their purchases and about us as their jewelry provider.
This is a major reason our customers become life-long patrons and friends.
Are you interested in creating your engagement ring with a loose diamond from our inventory, or just have a question we can answer? Contact Sergio@jfjco.com to schedule an appointment today!
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