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What Does Gold Filled Mean In Jewelry

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Gold Filled Or Solid Gold: Look At The Gold Markings

What is GOLD Filled Jewelry | Jill Maurer

Solid gold pieces are usually stamped with their karat number only. For example, an 18-karat item should have a stamp such as 18K, 18kt, or 18KP.

In Europe, you may see karats expressed as a decimal, percentage, or parts per thousand: Thus, an 18K piece may be stamped with a marking such as 0.75 or 750 since 18 karats imply 75% gold content .

Gold-filled jewelry should also have markings indicating its karat number. However, such pieces usually have additional letters and numbers stamped that indicate that they are not solid gold.

The most common identifier of gold-filled items is the sign GF after the karat number.


As an example, 1/10 22K GF is a marking which tells you that the item is gold filled and its gold layer is made of 22-karat gold the fraction 1/10 before the karat number means that one tenth of the items weight is gold.

Sometimes, instead of the stamp GF you may see the letters RGP, standing for rolled gold plate. This type of jewelry is made in the same way as gold-filled pieces, but its gold layer is much thinner.

Note: Although a simple karat number stamp such as 14K, without any additional letters, should mean that the piece is solid gold, there may be some vendors that could sell gold-filled jewelry that is not identified as such by the letters GF.

Related:Check out this selection of gold-plated jewelry.

How Much Gold Is Used In Gold

Not much. Gold plated jewelry contains less than .05% of gold. The gold layer is minuscule and would be virtually invisible if it werent for golds naturally bright yellow coloring.

You might think the tiny gold contents are a disadvantage, but theres certainly a place for gold plating in the jewelry market, thanks to its budget-friendly price points.

Does Gold Filled Jewelry Last

Yes, gold-filled jewelry lasts for very long periods of time. This is largely owing to two factors, the amount of gold and the coating process. Pure gold is difficult to tarnish, and any signs of wear and tear on jewelry are usually there because the base metal is starting to flake. The process of gold filling also results in more durable jewelry than electroplating, giving this type of jewelry a much longer life. However, even though it might take decades, the piece will eventually start to tarnish. The one thing that might accelerate the process is exposure to large amounts of pollution, which might blacken the gold on your jewelry. In some rare cases, an allergic reaction might also turn the gold itself black.

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The Difference Between Gold

Gold-filled and gold-plated accessories are the same in concept: both non-gold base metals like copper, nickel, or jewelers brass with a gold coat, which fools people into thinking they are more expensive than their price on the tag. However, they are products of two different manufacturing processes.

To make a gold-filled accessory, you need two gold sheets, a base metal core, and a generous amount of heat. Youll need to thin out the gold into a leaf-like thickness and then bond it to the jewelers brass with a blowtorch or a metal bender. Most metalsmiths accomplish this by heating the gold alloy and putting it through a metal roller a handful of times, which will both reduce its thickness and bond it together with the jewelers brass.

Gold-filled accessories tarnish much more slowly than gold-plated ones. Youll find them more durable and capable of standing up to harsher operating environments. If you wear them to the gym, they will resist your sweat more competently, or you can take them out to the beach or the pool and notice no discoloration for at least a few summers.

Gold-filled accessories also command a higher price tag because they feature a higher percentage of gold. Whereas gold-plated necklaces and earrings are only 0.05 percent gold or lower, gold-filled jewelry is around 5 percent. Thats over a hundred times more gold content, but the price tag only doubles or triples. Therefore, as a first-time gold buyer, you can breathe easy.

Is There A Difference Between Gold Plated And Gold Filled Jewelry

FAQ: What does Gold Filled Mean?

The short answer is yes, but we don’t expect you to take our word for it so we thought we’d draft up a blog post that explains what the differences are exactly. At AHA we exclusively use 14K gold filled for all of our yellow and/or rose gold earring hooks, chains and clasps. After reading this blog post we’re pretty sure you’ll understand why. Plus its great to be educated so you know what to shop for.

Whenever we do jewelry shows or markets we are able to explain in person the types of metals we use in our earring designs. Online, however, its a lot harder to highlight the importance of buying gold filled over gold plated in our short product descriptions.

So here’s the deal. Have you ever purchased a “gold” piece of jewelry just to have it turn color, chip or peel on you? You might have even purchased this item at a retail establishment that you wouldn’t expect that from. Personally in the past I’ve picked up jewelry from places like Anthropologie, Jcrew, even Nordstron that this happened to. Most likely this jewelry was gold plated. Frankly most gold tone jewelry sold is plated, because its cheaper to manufacture.

There is a big difference between “gold filled” and gold plated”. Its really good to know the difference so that you know what to shop for and what you are getting for your buck. Bottom line your going to pay a little bit more for gold filled jewelry, but it will stand the test of time, and in our opinion its well worth it. Heres why:

Read Also: How Much Is 10k Gold Worth

Gold Filled Jewelry Versus Real Gold

Gold filled jewelry is a lot more than an affordable alternative to real gold jewelry. It boasts many of its own unique features and attributes. It’s much easier to care for than real gold. It’s also more widely available.

The downsides are that it’s not as valuable and it’s not as durable as real gold. Although the near 30-year lifespan of gold filled jewelry is impressive, it pales in comparison to that of pure gold. Pure gold jewelry can last indefinitely when properly cared for. This is why archaeologists continue to unearth intact gold artifacts from ancient societies.

Gold Plated Vs Gold Filled And Their Differences

Now, to their differences. To start, their manufacturing process is different. The amount of gold alloy present in gold filled pieces is unparalleled from those of gold-plated.

The gold alloys found on gold plated jewelry are very miniscule you can barely notice . To make gold plated pieces, an electroplating process is needed to form a layer of gold on top of its core. Whereas with gold filled jewelry, the core metal is coated in between with gold alloy. This is then heated several times passing through a roller. This is a process that bonds the metal together and thins the sheet out.

Furthermore, gold filled jewelry is composed of a gold alloy 100x more. This makes the layer thicker and thus produces a more long-lasting piece compared to gold plated. All it takes for a gold plated piece to expose the brass underneath is one small scratch. Durability wise, as weve mentioned beforehand, gold filled jewelry is more durable. This is because gold filled have thicker layers of gold alloy. On that note, the longevity of each category is still dependent on external factors such as its wear, the environment, and the quality of the piece.

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What Types Of Gold Jewelry To Buy

Finally, we are now able to break down and differentiate each category of these jewelry pieces. The next dilemma would be figuring out what type of jewelry to buy. The trick here is to know the function of the jewelry. How do you intend to use it? For what purpose? Do you want to keep it longer or is it just an accessory for an occasion? These are some of the questions you should consider to make a sound choice of what to buy.

If you want a premium quality that is demi-fine, an 18K gold vermeil is a good option. If youre fine with a lower base metal but want to keep it longer, gold-filled pieces are your best bet. If it’s only for casual fashion or you just want to ride a trend, gold plated jewelry are the pieces to go. It is a matter of personal preference. But we are glad to guide you along the way.

What Does 316l Mean On Body Jewelry

Gold Plated vs Gold Filled Jewelry – What’s the Difference?

316L indicates stainless steel. It is the most basic metal manufacturers use for body jewelry. Although it is not a precious metal, it is more durable than silver or platinum. It is because of its chromium coating that chemically bonds to the steel.

This coating protects the steel from tarnishing and rusting. The chromium coating also protects your item from scratches by taking the initial impact. It is the spontaneous formation of a hard non-reactive surface film that prevents corrosion.

Many believe that stainless steel is better than silver, gold, and titanium, although it is cheaper. But the only reason it is cheaper is that it is more abundant than other precious metals.

Stainless steel is an excellent jewelry material because it is durable and affordable. It will not corrode, rust, stain, tarnish, fade, or turn your skin green. But you need to make sure that the jewelry you buy uses high-quality 316L surgical grade stainless steel.

Care tips for your stainless steel jewelry:

  • Wash it with bacterial soap and warm water before use.
  • Do not use alcohol or harsh chemicals to clean it if your steel jewelry has acrylic or gems.

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What Does Dl Mean On Jewelry

Jewelry pieces stamped with dl means they have diamond-like components. It means that, like diamonds, they have a sparkly appearance.

If you are looking for alternative gemstones for diamonds, you can seek for these sparkling jewels instead. Other beautiful gemstones will add a sparkle to your collection while allowing you to save money.

  • Moissanite

    This stone is a form of silicon carbide and is usually synthetically produced. When it comes to durability, it is perhaps the closest diamond imitation material. It is an excellent choice if you seek a solitaire engagement ring, necklace, or stud earrings.

    Moissanite is more brilliant than a diamond and sparkles in more colors. It has more dispersion than diamonds, which means it splits light into rainbow colors twice as much as diamonds.

  • White sapphire

    White sapphire is also an excellent diamond-like stone because of its appearance and durability. It is a pure, colorless form of corundum mineral, the second hardest known natural substance.

    White sapphire looks like a perfect accent to colored sapphires in jewelry pieces. You can also find this brilliant stone in solitaire necklaces, stud earrings, and some wedding rings.

  • Garnet

    There are some colorless, synthetic garnet stones that some jewelers use to imitate diamonds. Colorless garnet stones are more popularly known as leuco and are a type of grossular garnet. But they are much softer and quick to scratch.

  • White quartz

    Types Of Gold Used In Jewelry

    There are four different types of gold jewelry one can purchase. These are solid gold, filled gold, gold vermeil, and gold plated. While plated gold jewelry, like gold-filled, employ copper and brass as base metals, gold vermeil uses sterling silver, which is the purest form of silver available. So while it does not have a layer of gold as thick as filled gold, it makes up for that in value through the silver. Compared to gold-filled, vermeil only has a layer of gold thats 2.5 microns thick, which is still significantly more than plated gold. The latter, in turn, makes up for its flaws by allowing for re-plating if it gets worn down. With filled gold, however, one can rest assured about its durability for several years despite daily usage.

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    How Long Does Gold Filled Jewelry Last

    How Long Does Gold Filled Jewelry Last? Does gold-filled jewelry tarnish? What would cause it to tarnish?

    You may ask these questions when youre shopping for jewelry, and you noticed the gold piece youre coveting is out of your price range.

    However, you see a gold-filled option that is more affordable, but not cheap either when compared to a gold-plated item.

    Whats the difference between pure gold, gold-filled, and other alternatives when it comes to how long they can last? Whats more, how do you know whats best for you?

    Well, were here to answer your question best we can. We will also look at how long gold-filled jewelry last so that you can make an informed purchase.

    The last thing people want is feeling conned out of their hard-earned cash.

    So, first things first, you guys need to know what is exactly gold filled jewelry?

    What Exactly Is Gold

    FAQ: What does Gold Filled Mean?

    Gold-filled jewelry usually consists of a base metal like copper, brass, or nickel that has been coated with gold under high pressure and heat. This gold can be 10, 12, 14, or 18 karats. As mentioned earlier, gold-filled jewelry is the second type of jewelry with the most amount of gold in it. This category of ornaments is legally mandated to contain at least 5% of gold. They are usually marked with the karatage , or the / sign.

    The manufacturing process of gold-filled items severely minimizes its supply in several ways. These items can only be manufactured in the form of sheets, wires, and tubes since it cannot be cast. For pendants, circle, square, and bar pendants are the standard. Casting is a popular process for encasing objects with a mineral, it involves melting the gold and pouring it on the metal. But this would result in the gold permeating the surface of the metal, giving it an uneven look. This process is also very expensive as compared to those for other types of gold ornaments. These restrictions result in gold-filled jewelry being much rarer as compared to the most popular type, which is gold plated jewelry.

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    What Is Gold Vermeil

    Gold vermeil is thick gold plating on top of sterling silver. US standards require there to be at least 2.5 microns of gold plated on top of sterling silver, but some other countries require less, such as Canada only requiring 1.0 micron. It is hypoallergenic, so people with metal allergies can wear it safely. Since the gold plating in vermeil is much thicker than gold plated jewelry, the gold lasts much, much longer. Over years, with lots of excessive use, the gold can wear off in areas with a lot of contact.

    We recommend purchasing gold vermeil products from trusted brands because some companies can claim their products are vermeil, but their products don’t actually have 2.5 microns of gold. 2.5 microns converted to inches is .0001″, so as you can imagine, it’s quite hard to measure without proper equipment. At Simple & Dainty, we send our vermeil pieces to a reputable plating factory that has the capability of measuring how much gold they are plating on top of the sterling silver.

    Many charms cant be made of gold filled due to its limitations , so we use gold vermeil instead. A few of our necklaces have gold vermeil charms on gold filled chains, such as our Dainty Horn Necklace, Roman Coin Necklaces, and Tiny Lock Necklace – and we absolutely adore our gold vermeil rings . Gold vermeil jewelry is a great choice for those who want something to wear daily while still being affordable.

    How Long Does Pure Gold Last

    This one is straightforward. Pure gold lasts forever. Thats why its been valuable for millenniums, and not losing its status in both society and the market.

    It is why individuals and couples will save up for months and then spend thousands of dollars on a gold ring.

    Since they can last lifetimes, they quickly get passed down from generation to another and still be of great value.

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    What Does Jh Mean On Jewelry

    JH is a makers mark that stands for John Hardy, a sustainable luxury jewelry brand. It is because the company donates a part of its profit to environmental causes that help preserve Bali.

    Bali and its time-honored jewelry-making traditions inspired John Hardy in creating handcrafted jewelry. They take pride in their craftspeople who create jewelry through many meditative processes.

    The company also offers an apprenticeship program, Jobs for Life. It provides vocational training and financial support to Bali citizens. They are also committed to codes of practice that ensure that they ethically produce their stones, diamonds, and metals.

    What Does Jcm Mean On Jewelry

    Your basic guide to gold jewelry (14k, 18k, 24k, plated, vermeil, filled) ⨠| hiypauline

    JCM is a makers mark that may stand for Jacmel Jewelry, Inc. JCM manufactured jewelry for companies such as Disney, Nickelodeon, Hallmark, DC Comics, MLB, NFL, and Sanrio.

    The company manufactures, designs, and distributes jewelry worldwide. They specialize in chains, rings, earrings, diamonds, and bracelets.

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    What Does 14k Gf Mean

    Have you ever been asked, What does 14k gold filled mean? Here is your answer. The gold-filled is a standard in the United Statess Industry, that require a 1/20th of pure gold content in the wight of the gold filled items. Its a strictly regulated process that involves pressure bonding multiple layers of solid 14k gold with extreme heat over a core of high-quality jewelers brass resulting in a durable, quality real gold product.

    This term filled with gold refers to a thick outer layer of durable, pressure-bonded, real, solid gold, it is nothing to do with being filled with gold.

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