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Gold Filled vs. Gold Vermeil Jewelry


Welcome back to Sunday Jewels' Sunday School. Many of you now know the differences between gold-plated and gold-filled jewelry, but what is gold vermeil jewelry? 

What is Gold Vermeil?

Gold Vermeil is very similar to gold-plated jewelry but instead of using brass, nickel, or zinc as the base metal - Gold vermeil jewelry uses sterling silver. Gold-plated jewelry often tends to erode with everyday usage and leaves your skin in contact with the base metal which causes the wearer's skin to become irritated. Sterling silver is usually more hypoallergenic than alloy bases such as nickel or zinc making gold vermeil jewelry a better alternative to gold-plated jewelry. 

What is the difference between Gold Filled and Gold Vermeil?

These two types of gold jewelry undergo very different manufacturing processes. Gold vermeil jewelry is created through an electroplating process where the sterling silver base layer is plated with a thin layer of solid gold. Gold-filled jewelry is created through a pressure and heat bonding process where the jeweler's brass base metal has a thick layer of solid gold melted onto it. 

See the illustration below for a more detailed description of the manufacturing processes of Gold filled and Gold vermeil jewelry:

Illustration of gold filled jewelry and gold vermeil jewelry manufacturing processes.

Does the thickness of gold matter?

To answer this question simply - Yes the thickness of gold matters! Gold-filled and gold vermeil undergo two very different manufacturing processes but they also receive different quantities of solid gold. Gold vermeil usually has less than 0.1 microns to 3 microns of electroplated solid gold. While the US standard gold-filled jewelry must contain 1/20 weight of the jewelry in solid gold. The thickness of solid gold will determine the overall longevity of wear. 

It is quite important for gold vermeil jewelry to have a thick layer of solid gold because gold vermeil is not water-resistant. Normal everyday wear and tear such as water, skin, and sweat contact increases the chances of gold vermeil jewelry becoming tarnished and dull. While gold-filled jewelry is made for normal everyday activities like water, skin, and sweat contact. 

For example; if the same type of jewelry is made in gold filled and gold vermeil. The gold-filled jewelry piece will be more durable and live a longer life because of the manufacturing process. 

What type of gold jewelry should I invest in?

There are a few factors that will determine this - your budget and how often you wear your gold jewelry. Gold-filled jewelry is found to be slightly more expensive due to the complexity and costs of manufacturing. Though gold-filled jewelry is more durable and the longevity of this jewelry will outlast gold vermeil and gold-plated options. When comparing gold-plated jewelry, gold vermeil can be a better option for those who have sensitive skin to alloys and metals found in gold-plated jewelry. But gold vermeil jewelry does not last as long as gold filled and will eventually fade and expose the sterling silver base metal beneath the gold. 

If you forget to take your jewelry off before you shower or love to look stylish while working out, gold-filled jewelry is the best choice for you, whereas if you are cautious and take off your jewelry before getting into water then gold vermeil jewelry will be sufficient.

In the end, it is ultimately up to you!

Sunday Jewels are proud to say that all of our jewelry is gold-filled which means our jewelry is water-resistant and non-tarnishing. You can wear our jewelry in the water, while you sweat and elevate your everyday fit. Our jewelry is also hypoallergenic so if you have sensitive skin and can't stand wearing anything with nickel, copper, and zinc we've got you covered. Sunday Jewels are home to 18k gold-filled, water-resistant, sweat-proof, and tarnish-free jewelry. 

Sunday Jewels - Ignite the light within you


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