The difference between Gold Vermeil and Gold Plated
If you’re looking to buy gold-colored jewelry, you will find many different variations that are more affordable than expensive solid gold pieces. The most common types are Vermeil and gold plated. Those two are often compared. But there are some significant differences.
At Goldmariie, we offer Gold Vermeil Jewelry instead of unregulated gold plated pieces. And here we want to give you an explanation of what Vermeil is exactly and why we prefer it over other plating options.
What does Gold Vermeil mean?
Vermeil is a legally regulated term that refers to a certain quality standard in jewelry. It defines the minimum thickness of the gold layer that coats a Sterling Silver base. However, this standard may vary depending on the country where the Gold Vermeil Jewelry is produced and sold. In the US, to rightfully use the term “Vermeil” the following criteria have to be fulfilled:
- the base material always has to be 925 Sterling Silver, an alloy consisting of 92.5% pure silver and 7.5% other high-quality metals to make it more durable
- The thickness of the gold plating must be at least 2.5 micron. Micron is the short version of micrometer. Both refer to the same thing but are used in different contexts.
- The gold used for the coating has to be at least 10karat gold (10k gold), an alloy consisting of about 41.7% pure gold and 58.3% other precious metals like silver, platinum, or copper. - Rose Gold has a higher copper ratio than yellow gold to achieve the typical rose tone.
In comparison, in Canada, the standard for Vermeil is considerably lower: jewelry with a gold layer of as little as 1 micron already is accepted as Vermeil. Needless to say: the thicker the gold coating, the better the quality. Therefore, always check the quality of the item you are paying for when ordering online. You want to get what you pay.
Our Goldmariie Vermeil items all have a gold layer of 5 microns to make the plating even more durable. We want your favorite jewelry to last and bring you joy for a long time. For both yellow and rose gold, we use a 14k Gold Vermeil coating that consists of 58.3% pure gold.
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How is Vermeil Jewelry different from gold plated jewelry?
Vermeil actually is a special kind of gold plating with very high-quality requirements. Standard gold plating only needs to be 0.5micron. And there are no regulations regarding the base material. That means that the base often is of lesser quality. It might even contain nickel to which a lot of people are allergic.
Also, the very thin layer of gold used for simple gold plating can wear off quickly. When not done well, the gold finish even can chip off altogether.
To sum it up: Vermeil is gold plating, but gold plating is not always Vermeil. Pretty rarely, actually. Buying Gold Vermeil means you will get an affordable alternative to solid gold with the highest standard of gold plating.
Reasons to buy Gold Vermeil Jewelry
- Apart from solid gold, it is the best quality in gold-toned jewelry out there.
- Gold Jewelry is totally en vogue. We can’t imagine it being out of style any time soon. Our 14k Gold Vermeil Jewelry is a fantastic option if you are looking for high-quality jewelry at an affordable price.
- It is excellent for everyone with allergic reactions to cheap metals such as nickel.
- When handled with care, Rose Gold Vermeil and Yellow Gold Vermeil are very durable. The thicker the coating, the longer it will last.
- Vermeil is legally regulated. When you buy from trustworthy shops, you can be sure about the quality you will get. However, assure the shop operates with US or European standards. They are a lot higher than those in some other countries. Those in Canada, for example.
- And last but not least: our 14k Gold Vermeil Jewelry will honestly look stunning on you 😇
Caring for Vermeil Jewelry is not very different from taking care of other high-quality jewelry. To avoid discoloration, you should keep it away from cosmetics like lotions, perfume, etc., and aggressive soap. It is best to put your gems on after you finished your morning routine - or after your prep for the night out. Also, remove your jewelry before you go swimming.
We use 14k Gold Vermeil for our jewelry. It is a little softer than the less valuable 10k gold and more durable and more robust than 18k gold. It can still scratch, though. We recommend using a microfiber cloth for cleaning. If necessary, you can dip it in water with a little bit of mild soap. But don’t use brushes or other utensils that might cause scratches to the surface of your jewelry.
Rose Gold Vermeil jewelry is more likely to tarnish than Yellow Gold Vermeil due to the higher amount of copper. That is necessary to achieve the typical, elegant rose color. Therefore always store it in a dry place.
Please note: Vermeil can always be re-plated. So you don’t have to throw your pieces out just because the plating rubbed off after time.
For more detailed care instructions on Vermeil and other materials we use for our Goldmariie Jewelry, please visit our Care Guide.
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On a final note
When you buy jewelry, do it consciously and with consideration. The metals and resources used in manufacturing jewelry are limited. Better invest in timeless, elegant pieces with high quality that will stay with you for a long time instead of buying cheap stuff. Vermeil is a great option to expand your collection responsibly and sustainably.