Platinum vs Gold rings: How To Choose The Right Wedding Ring
14th April 2020
by Tara W
Picking out a wedding ring is a big step in any happy
couple’s relationship, but deciding which one to commit to can be challenging.
With a plethora of stunning designs to choose from, it’s easy to use your own
judgement when it comes to how it looks.
Choosing the type of metal used for your band, however, is another matter entirely. Often overlooked, there’s actually a big difference between platinum and white gold rings despite them looking very similar.
If you’re not sure which one to go for, keep reading this handy guide to platinum vs white gold wedding rings. We explore everything from how both of them are made to how well they’ll fare in the long run.
What is a Platinum Ring?
Platinum is a naturally white metal that is both harder to find and more durable than gold. It’s used in a much purer form than white gold, which is why it’s typically more expensive.
The durability of platinum is one of the many reasons why it’s a popular choice for wedding rings, with many believing it to be completely scratch proof. While this is technically true, it doesn’t mean your ring will be completely free of blemishes.
Platinum wedding rings tend to develop ridging over time due to how often they are worn. This is completely natural and isn’t seen as a negative thing. Many people embrace the antique look it gives a ring, affectionately dubbing it ‘the patina of age’. The patina effect is caused by the metal moving from one place to another and is more likely to occur if the ring is worn every day, as a wedding ring usually is.
Benefits of Platinum:
Durable - almost completely scratch proof.
Hypoallergenic metal - great for those with sensitive skin.
Low maintenance - keeps its shiny appearance for longer.
Can be engraved - add your own personal message.
What is a White Gold Ring?
Unlike platinum, white gold is seen as a man-made metal, as it doesn’t exist naturally. Many people don’t realise this and believe it to be cheaper simply because it’s a more common metal. In reality, white gold is a mixture of yellow gold and white metal alloys which is then dipped in rhodium. This rare silver metal makes a beautifully smooth coating on the ring, giving it an eye-catching shine.
Pure gold is naturally very soft, which is far from what you want from a wedding ring. Mixing gold with a more durable metal prevents the ring from bending and losing its shape over time.
If you’re interested in how much pure gold is actually in your ring, turn your attention to the number of carats it has. Often abbreviated to a single ‘K’, the number refers to the level of pure gold in the jewellery. You may have heard the term ‘24k’ referred to in songs and films; this number refers to pure gold and is, therefore, the top end of the scale. The most common carat measurements are 9k (37.5% pure gold), 14k (58%) and 18k (75%).
Benefits of White Gold:
Affordable - a similar appearance to platinum for a fraction of the cost.
- Eye-catching shine - the rhodium coating provides a shiny and smooth finish.
Comfortable - white gold is a lightweight metal making it comfortable for everyday wear.
Can be engraved - add your own personal message.
How to Choose Between a White Gold or Platinum Wedding Ring
Despite looking very similar, there’s a lot to consider when choosing between white gold and platinum. They behave differently in most aspects, even having an effect on the comfort of the ring. It may be tempting to go for the cheapest option available but there are plenty of other things to look into that may change your mind.
As already noted, platinum is the strongest and heaviest metal of the two. Although it can develop ridging over time, this tends to bring more character to the ring. The patina effect is viewed as desirable, giving it a vintage effect over time that many people want to achieve. If you like the sound of platinum but want a shiny ring with no patina, you may have to get it rebuffed when the ridging starts to show.
White gold does look incredibly similar to platinum, in fact, you may not be able to tell the difference at first glance. Unfortunately, the rhodium cover can fade, resulting in a slightly yellow hue over the once white band. Don’t worry though, this is easily fixed by taking a trip to your local jewellers to ask them to re-plate and re-polish the ring to return it to its former glory.
Despite looking very similar, white gold is usually cheaper than platinum. This is mainly due to the fact that platinum is used in a much purer form. Although it’s outrightly cheaper, you will have to get white gold rings recoated by a professional every once in a while to stop them looking tarnished and yellow.
Platinum is more expensive but requires less maintenance than white gold, unless you want to professionally buff out the patina marks.
Don’t worry if you want to put a special message or date in your ring - both white gold and platinum can be engraved with no issues.
Whether or not you like a heavy ring is a personal choice, so the comfort aspect is hard to judge without trying rings on. Platinum rings are the heavier of the two, making white gold a great option for those who prefer something more lightweight.
People with allergies should be careful when purchasing a white gold ring. Platinum is completely hypoallergenic but some people react to the nickel alloy often used to produce white gold. However, you won’t have to worry about that when you purchase from Diamonds Factory as our white gold is completely nickel-free.