When buying jewelry, it’s important to know what material we’d like the chain to be manufactured in. Obviously, the material will determine their prices that’s why we’ve created this page to help you understand the different kinds of metals used in modern jewelry production.
Below is a list of all of the materials available along with a brief description of each.
Stainless steel is low carbon steel and it is the most popular of all of the base metals for plating because of its strength, weight, and cheap cost. There is 304 and 316L stainless steel, the 316L stainless steel is the best of both and that’s what we mostly use in all of our stainless steel collections. Stainless steel jewelry is hypoallergenic and extremely durable. Stainless is the only base metal, apart from karat gold and 925 (they are discussed below) that can be worn all of the time in any conditions without any detrimental effects. It can even be worn in the shower and to the beach!
Brass would be the 2nd most popular base metal to plate. Brass is considered to be a “rich-low” brass C226 alloy and is a mixture of 85% copper and 15% zinc. Brass is more expensive than steel and approximately 13% heavier giving the jewelry a nicer weight with more of perceived value. Brass is used on higher end pieces when cost is not as much of an issue. Because brass is softer than steel, the jewelry will tend to be slightly weaker, which is usually only an issue on the smaller chains. For those chains, we offer soldered brass versions. Like steel, brass can be plated in any of our available finishes.
We use a 110 grade 100% pure copper for all of our copper chains. The copper chain is the same price, weight, and strength as a brass chain. The copper chain can be plated in any of our finishes, however, copper is mostly used in its raw form or sometimes vibed and lacquered to bring out the coppers natural beauty and to preserve its shelf life. It has also been rumored that copper has healing properties for people with arthritis.
Sterling silver is an alloy consisting of at least 92 ½% fine silver with the other 7 ½% being mostly copper. While sterling silver chains can be plated most people use sterling silver just vibed to bring out the sterling’s luster or vibed with an anti-tarnish applied to prolong the chains shelf life.
Gold plated jewelry is NOT fully gold jewelry. Gold plated jewelry is jewelry made of base metal (e.g. copper) or silver that has a thin layer of gold applied to the top. The layer is so thin, but it can last longer depending on the base material. 316L is a good base material to look out for when shopping gold plated jewelry. With the price of gold going up over the years, gold plated jewelry have become decent alternatives for many fashion lovers irrespective of class or popularity status
Karat gold on its own as the name suggests comes in various karat, mostly in 10, 14, 18, and 24 karats. Karat gold is the most expensive of all the metals used in jewelry production. It is measured and sold in gramThe expensive price tag is due to the scarcity or the rigorous process involved in mining it. Karat gold or real gold is the only type of jewelry that has 2nd hand value and it is seen by many as a good store of value. At our store, we mostly sell 18karat gold and they come in various grams.