Vermeil vs. Gold Plated Jewelry: What's the Difference? - Nickel & Suede

Vermeil vs. Gold Plated Jewelry: What's the Difference?

When it comes to gold-plated jewelry, there are two terms that often come up: vermeil and gold plated. While both types of jewelry involve a layer of gold over a base metal, there are some important differences between them. In this blog post, we'll take a closer look at vermeil jewelry and gold plated jewelry, and how they differ from each other.

Vermeil Jewelry:

Vermeil is a type of jewelry that is made from sterling silver and is plated with a layer of gold. To be considered vermeil, the gold layer must be plated over sterling silver. Vermeil jewelry is known for its high quality and is often more expensive than gold plated jewelry. That being said, the gold plating can eventually wear off and expose the silver color underneath. 

Vermeil jewelry has a warm, yellow gold color and a high shine that is similar to solid gold. Because it is made from sterling silver, it is also hypoallergenic and suitable for people with sensitive skin.

Gold plated herringbone chain necklaces

Gold plated necklaces

Gold Plated Jewelry:

Gold plated jewelry, on the other hand, is made from a base metal that is then plated with a layer of gold. The thickness of the gold layer can vary, but it is typically thinner than that of vermeil jewelry.

Because gold plated jewelry is made from a base metal, it is often less expensive than vermeil jewelry. Depending on the level of plating, it may not be as durable or long-lasting, and the gold layer may wear off over time. 

18 gold plated hoop earrings

Hoop Earrings

Which is Better?

The choice between vermeil jewelry and gold plated jewelry ultimately comes down to personal preference and budget. Vermeil jewelry is more expensive, can be more durable and has a thicker layer of gold, which means it will last longer and maintain its shine. Gold plated jewelry, on the other hand, can be more affordable and may be a good option for those who want the look of gold without the high price tag.

It is important to note that both vermeil jewelry and gold plated jewelry require proper care to maintain their appearance. They should be stored in a dry place and kept away from water and chemicals, as these can cause the gold layer to wear off more quickly.

Because plating will eventually wear off on both vermeil and gold-plated jewelry, some people find they perfer gold-plating over brass rather than silver. The brass looks more similar to gold as the peice wears over time.

At Nickel & Suede we offer jewlery in a variety of plating options- along with corresponding price points. We offer vermeil styles in many earring options as well as gold plating in 14 or 18 karat gold. For classic everyday wear we recommend vermeil or our higher quality 18 karat gold-plated peices. For fun, quick, more affordable pieces, we recommend 14 karat gold-plating in something like the Onyx Sweetheart Huggies or other fashion huggie earrings.



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