White Gold vs. Platinum: What's the Difference?

Handmade diamond engagement rings


Which white metal should you choose for your engagement ring?

Here's our take on the topic! Platinum is one the most durable of all white metals. Regardless of the alloy, platinum is considered hypo-allergenic and it is much more rare and precious than gold is, making it the perfect counterpart for diamonds and the perfect material for an heirloom that will stand the test of time. In general, you want to have the "whitest" metal around your diamonds because that framing will, in turn, make your diamonds will look whiter. In any event, if the metal of your setting starts to become sallow, your diamonds will inevitably reflect that color.

In our opinion, the biggest determining factor for selecting platinum (aside from strength and durability) is maintenance. Platinum is a naturally white metal, which means that it doesn’t require any rhodium plating to maintain its gorgeous white finish.

Meanwhile, gold is naturally yellow and must be mixed with nickel or palladium, plus copper and zinc for white gold to achieve its signature color. According to the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), people who are allergic to nickel should avoid white gold which is likely to be alloyed with this metal. 

In order to create that high-chrome finish that most folks associate with white gold fine jewelry, the metal must be rhodium plated. Over time, the plating starts to wear away, so folks pay to have their white gold rings rhodium plated annually. The cost varies but can be as expensive as $120- $200 per plating. 

The Verdict

The long and short of it is, we recommend platinum if it’s within budget. They will look the same in the beginning, but platinum is stronger/denser and will require less maintenance because it is a naturally white metal. 


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