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The Right Jewelry Metals for You

5 vital factors when choosing jewelry metals

Is the metal you're wearing or are considering buying, right for you?

Here are 5 points to consider when choosing jewelry metal, which are:

1. Your Skintone
2. Quality
3. Budget
4. Personal Taste and Style
5. Possible skin allergies

Your Skintone

Your skin tone easily determines if you suit warm or cool colored metals. The right colors make your skin glow:

Warm colored metals: Yellowy gold, gray/black gold, pink/rose gold, copper and brass.

Cool colored metals: Silver, white gold, gray/black gold, pink/rose gold, steel, platinum and titanium.

Those with cool complexions wearing warm colors will look sallow. Cool colors on someone with warm complexion will make their skin look dull. To see what I mean, test it by wearing gold and silver seperately to see what suits you most. You might also discover that you suit both metals which makes you a lucky-neutral. You can wear absolutely everything =)

Fashion Tip Note What if you like colors that "aren't yours"?

You can choose between looking pale (not in a good way) or healthy. I recommend focusing what suits your skin tone rather than what you're most drawn to.

But what if you really love color that aren't in your personal color palette? Don't worry :) What really matters here is what you put near your face. So you can wear cool metals as bracelets and rings.

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Quality Preference

If you're on a budget but prefer buying jewelry in heaps and quantity, then "cheap" electroplated fashion jewelry is your preferred choice, but they don't last that long due to their thin layer of silver or gold. I'm sure you've noticed this with some of your jewelries bought in stores that massproduce their items.

It's a shame to see your favorite jewelry wearing off after just a couple of weeks or months of daily wear. The price often equals the quality =(

If you're aiming for real quality, then choose solid golds and silvers. These last a lifetime (even lifetimes) under daily wear, but only if you regularly take care of them. So expect to spend atleast 30 minutes per week cleaning and polishing these. Or maybe just once a month if you only use the jewelry occasionally.

Solid jewelry metals are perfect for family heirlooms! Imagine yourself as a 70-year old woman handing down your all-time favorite gold pendant to your granddaughter!
Fashion Tip Note Why is Silver Cheaper than Gold?

That's because silver needs more maintenance than gold. Silver is mixed the metal copper, which easily tarnishes (rust).

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Your Budget

Solid gold and silver are best if you want real quality! But if it's not in your price range then you need to look for other "cheaper" solutions.

Here are my recommendations:
  • Electroplated metals like silver-plated or gold-plated are the cheapest, and they're easily available. Found at your local chain store.
  • They're made by coating the base metal (eg. nickel, bronze or lead) with a thin layer of gold or silver. These usually wear off after a short time of use. That's why they're cheap :)

  • Gold-filled is your best bet
  • if you want affordable gold. The metal is covered in a layer of gold at atleast 1/20th of the total weight of the metal in either 10, 12, 14 or 18 karat. A lot thicker than the thin layered cheap stuff.

    That means: The jewelry doesn't wear off quickly.

    Gold filled jewelry are usually stamped with "KGF" and are often used by independent jewelry designers.
    Fashion Tip Note Gold-filled can last a lifetime:

    According to and other resources, gold-filled jewelry usually last from 5 to 30 years even with daily wear. Under normal wear conditions it can last a lifetime ;) The gold layer is hundred times thicker than regular gold-plated. Even my girlfriends say their gold-filled jewelry have lasted for several years!

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  • Another alternative is Vermeil (pronounced "ver-may") which is almost the same thing as electro-plated and golf-filled but less known in the jewelry market. The main difference is that the base metal underlying the gold is silver :) So when it starts to wear off you'll see silver and not some rusty metal. But don't worry too soon about it wearing off. As with gold-filled it's heavily layered, which means it's more long-lasting than the regular plated metal

Your Personal Taste & Style

Like I mentioned further up this page, focus on your skin tone :)

Style-wise, neither is trendier or better than the other. You can notice that both yellowy gold and silver never goes out of style because they're staple jewelry metals. Both of the metals are always "in" but in different styles depending on season (eg. bold, minimalistic). Imagine if silver was the trend for summer. Like, what are warm colored people supposed to wear?

I might also add that silver is more luminous and heavenly, while gold seem exotic and vibrant :) So choose the metal that complements your look.

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Possible Skin Allergies

It's not the gold or silver directly that can cause an allergy, but the metals mixed with it. You see, pure silver and gold are too soft to mount as jewelry, so we have to mix it with other metals to harden it. Metals involved to harden it are copper, zinc and nickel.

It's the nickel that causes a skin reaction.

So if you have a nickel allergy, you need to aim for:
  • Purer metals like platinum and stainless steel because they contain minimum/or no nickel.
  • Nickel-free jewelry. Check out Simply Whispers for the best nickel-free collection.
So why should you worry about skin allergies if you've never in your life reacted to any jewelry?

Well, you shouldn't worry, but you might have to be prepared for future possibilites. Because due to our unpredictable bodies, your skin can react anytime at any age. So keep your eyes extra open if anyone in your family has nickel allergy or skin sensitivy.

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What do you want to do next?

... Buy cheap fashion costume jewelry?

... Learn more about jewelry essentials?

... Find your best, perfect colors?

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