So we have been asked about Meracai’s Vermeil plating, and what makes it so special compared to other forms of gold plating, and if one option is better than the rest. Well, the different options serves different purposes and of course different prices. We have tried to explain the different options to make it clearer for you, so you know what you are buying!
Gold-plated jewelry is made of a base of metal, most often steel or brass, which is then dipped in gold to create a very thin layer. It is estimated to be 0.05% or less of the metal product. Gold plating will generally wear off rather quickly and expose the brass base typically lasting between 6-12 months. It does not stand up to heat or water. Anyone who is allergic to the base metal may experience a skin reaction, such as a black rubbing or a rash.
Gold-filled is actually better quality than gold-plated. The base metal is still brass or copper, but the outside of the piece is constructed with two or three layers of actual sheet of gold pressure-bonded to the base metal, usually 14 karat. This way gold-filled jewelry literally has 100% more gold than gold plating and is therefore much more valuable and tarnish resistant.
With Vermeil jewelry, the base metal in contrast to the other methods used, has to be sterling silver. This makes vermeil a better option to those with skin allergies to other base metals. To truly qualify as Vermeil, the plating should be a minimum of 2.5 microns thick, a coating 50 times thicker than the average gold-plated piece and always over sterling silver. While less expensive than solid gold jewelry, using this technique is still more expensive than either gold-plated or gold-filled, as the price of gold and sterling silver brings the cost up a little.
So which is better?
The answer is: it depends on your personal preference. To some people Vermeil is better because it is made of only precious metals and with thicker gold coating making it more valuable. To others the price makes a big difference, and lastly, the purpose of the jewelry may also play a factor. If it is only for a season, gold-plated or gold-filled might be the right choice. So make sure you know what you are buying the jewelry for.
We hope this makes it a little more clearer when it comes to the right jewelry for you!