Gold is gold
A gold’s shine has been popular throughout the ages since they were first discovered in their natural state in streams across the globe. As it has been said, Gold is where you find it and ever since it has been found, the fascination and demand for it has never wavered. If anything else, it is usually worth more.
Dating back to the earliest civilization, different cultures across the globe have made use of gold in a number of ways. Aside from being used for currency, it has been sought by rulers and the elite in all the things that could adorn them and anything else that they possess. With these, gold’s status has been attributed to brilliance, beauty and the riches. But more importantly, its malleability, permanence, and portability helped the developing culture around them to expand the use of gold everywhere else; like art, clothing, construction, house and kitchenware, and other mechanisms.
Its use and relevance highly contributed to the progress of the world’s economies and the art of shaping and utilizing gold. Since then, gold became easily accepted everywhere and has become a coveted commodity along with other precious metals and precious stones. But among the noble metals, gold is one of the most popular in the jewelry industry that even to this day, more than 50% of the mined gold is used for jewelry making.
Pure Gold and Blended Gold
Pure gold is highly reflective of heat and light and is soft enough to be drawn into the thinnest sheets or finest wires. Hence, it is characterized as the most ductile and malleable metal. That said, this is also the reason why it needs to be alloyed, or mixed with other metals to give it more strength.
There are various metals that can be used to blend with gold such as silver, iron, copper and titanium. Most especially in jewelry making, every gold piece made is blended with other metals, forming alloys, for three important reasons:
- As mentioned above, it needs to be hard enough to be shaped into jewelry; also
- it is used to achieve different tones of gold which are white gold, yellow gold and rose gold; and,
- it is factored in the total cost of a jewelry.
This allows us to have gold jewelry in different sorts and fashion that we can wear for any occasion or use for a glammed up everyday wear to the office or hang out with friends. Blending gold also opened the door to the mixed metal trend that is styling with contrasting tones of gold that is perfect for wearing two-toned or a tri-color jewelry collection. But aside from the aforementioned three tones of gold, blending also allows to create other hues such as red, blue, green, gray and purple.
Taking it up a notch trendier, you can even explore stacking, that is layering different variations of gold whether with rings, earrings, bracelets and necklaces too. Popular style icons like Heart Evangelista and other A-listers in terms of fashion are not afraid of wearing a lot. You can either achieve a bold look or something artfully curated that looks easy and high fashion at the same time.
Does Gold Tarnish?
Pure gold neither corrodes nor tarnish. There are also only a handful of rare acids that can affect gold. These qualities add to the elevated value of this noble metal but at the same time, it is important to note that pure gold is too soft and is easily scratched which are drawbacks when you want to either make or wear jewelry. Gold alloyed with other metals are more durable so this makes them best for jewelry making and it also allows gold jewelry to be more wearable.
With the inclusion of other metals though, it is possible to see a change in the appearance of your gold jewelry over time. There are different concentrations of gold with other metals that may result in various reactions to different factors and elements in the environment. The good news is, it is not the gold that causes these types of reactions, it is the metals that are mixed in that do. Another good news is how it is more common in lower karats of gold. The more metals are mixed in with gold, the more prone it is to corroding or tarnishing. 18 karat gold jewelry pieces are made up of 75% gold and 25% other metal. This high concentration of gold or choosing something higher can be a safe choice.
Other Factors that Leads to Tarnishing
Alloyed gold To help care for your gold jewelry, here are some important things to note to help prevent tarnishing.
Avoid wearing gold jewelry in sweaty situations. A person’s sweat touching your jewelry may stain lower karats of gold jewelry faster and in some instances, cause an allergic reaction to sensitive skin. So to prevent these types of reactions, it is best to avoid wearing gold jewelry in sweaty situations like a hot day under the sun, going to the gym or generally doing something that would make you perspire heavily.
Understand your skin and the metals that suit you. With sensitive skin, the kind of metal mixed in with gold is something to consider when buying jewelry. Some people’s skin is reactive to nickel, copper or others. This makes the jewelry or your skin to get stained even over normal use. It helps to know which alloyed metals are suitable for you to wear.
Protect your gold jewelry from moisture. When moisture and naturally occurring elements in the environment like oxygen and sulfur mix together, it can contribute to the dulling or tarnishing of gold jewelry even when they are just stored or safely tucked in. What can help prevent this is silica gel and a nice jewelry box that carefully separates one accessory from another. Be sure to have a small pouch or bag of silica gel when you keep your gold jewelry to help prevent moisture from tarnishing them.
Do not expose your gold jewelry to abrasive chemicals. The use of cologne, detergent, hairspray and other substances may increase tarnishing. Remove your jewelry whenever you wash, take a bath or do something in the water.
Generally, with this information, dulling or tarnishing of gold jewelry can be avoided by removing your accessories when cooking, cleaning, showering, sleeping, gardening, or any activity that other chemicals may have contact with alloyed gold.
Care for Gold
Clean build up and stains using a non-abrasive cleaning agent. Avoid cleaning with hard bristles or harsh materials and chemicals that may either scratch or weaken the composition of the alloyed metal.
As this occurs over a period of time, you can clean your jewelry pieces at least once a month. Do not get discouraged. If you are reluctant to clean your jewelry on your own, there are available cleaning services offered to customers from jewelry stores such as Meycauayan Jewelries.
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