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White gold jewelry is trendy and worn extensively by lots of people. At first glance, it’s not easy for the untrained eye to differentiate between sterling silver and white gold as they’re both silver in color. However, white gold is made to imitate platinum with its shine and is less expensive. This is why many people use white gold as an alternative to platinum. White gold wedding bands are also quite popular and common.
A white gold wedding band would last long, be quite durable, look incredible, and make the best symbol of love and marriage. When it comes to a piece of jewelry like your wedding band, you probably never want to take it off! This brings us to the question can white gold jewelry be worn all the time?
Although you can wear your white gold all of the time, if you want your jewelry to remain pristine and free of rust and tarnish, it would be best to take off your jewelry in certain situations.
To see some of the most popular white gold jewelry just click here.
Situations to Avoid While Wearing White Gold Jewelry
To ensure that your white gold jewelry stays in the best condition for as long as possible, you shouldn’t wear it 24/7. It can get scratches, rust, become tarnished, or even break. To ensure that your white gold jewelry remains pristine for a long time, try to avoid wearing it in the following situations:
- While Taking a Shower or a Bath
While a little bit of water likely won’t do any damage to your white gold jewelry, you should avoid wearing it in the shower or the bath. Body wash and shampoo use mild chemicals compared to household cleaning solutions but can still cause damage to your jewelry with extended exposure. Other than that, the water and friction in the bath can cause the jewelry’s plating to wear off. There is also the risk of rust when your jewelry gets wet and dries off again and again.
If you forget to take off a necklace and head into the shower, it’s probably okay, and there won’t be much harm done. However, try not to make a habit of it, and remember to keep your jewelry in a safe place while you shower and bathe.
- In the Pool
It would be best to remove all your jewelry before swimming, whether you choose to swim in a swimming pool or the ocean. Swimming pools use large amounts of chlorine in the water, which is a highly corrosive chemical that can wear down the rhodium plating on your white gold jewelry. In case your jewelry is unplated, the metal alloys mixed into the white gold can start to leach out, creating bubbles and imperfections in the jewelry. The bubbles can also make the jewelry brittle so that parts of it might fall off and get lost. Imagine losing a diamond from your white gold ring in the swimming pool!
Saltwater can be just as bad for your white gold jewelry. It can cause the jewelry to tarnish and become blackened or lose its sparkle. And while you might find a rogue earring in a swimming pool, a piece of jewelry lost in the ocean is likely gone forever.
- Situations Where You Might Sweat Excessively
Sweat is not good for the rhodium plating on your white gold jewelry! If you were planning to go out for a run, head to the gym, or take a dance class, it would be a good idea to take off your jewelry first. When you sweat, you expose your jewelry to the sweat, moisture, and natural oils from your skin. This can cause the plating on the jewelry to wear off and cause the jewelry to look old and worn.
- When Doing the Dishes or the Laundry
Cleaning products you use around the house and while doing the dishes or the laundry all have harsh chemicals like bleach, ammonia, and hydrogen peroxide. All of these chemicals can corrode your jewelry over time and cause it to tarnish or get damaged. It would be best to remove all of your white gold jewelry before you start cleaning up.
- When you are Cooking
Lastly, you want to avoid wearing your white gold jewelry while cooking, especially rings and bracelets. The heat from cooking can cause your jewelry to become discolored or warped, and bits of food may become trapped in the small grooves and crevices of the jewelry. These bits of food can cause bacteria to start to grow and cause damage to the jewelry.
Additionally, there is always the chance that a ring slips off into a pan or a pot unnoticed. The chances of losing a ring while cooking are quite high, so it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Factors that Determine How Long Your White Gold Jewelry Will Last
Not all pieces of jewelry are the same, and no matter how well you take care of your jewelry, it won’t all last for the same amount of time. Certain factors de how long your white gold jewelry will last, including the quality of the gold and its plating.
White gold is made with a combination of pure gold and metal alloys like nickel or silver. Pure gold is too soft and is not durable enough to make jewelry out of. Adding in the alloy makes the gold more malleable and usable for jewelry. White gold jewelry usually comes in three variations:
10 Karat – 41.7% pure gold mixed with 58.3% alloy
14 Karat – 58.3% pure gold mixed with 41.7% alloy
18 Karat – 75% pure gold mixed with 25% alloy
White gold jewelry with a higher percentage alloy is actually stronger and more durable than white gold with a higher percentage of pure gold. Having a thicker plating will also make the jewelry last longer. White gold is usually plated in rhodium between 0.75 and 1 microns thick. The plating plays an important role in protecting the jewelry from getting scratched and tarnished.
Overall, you can wear white gold jewelry most of the time, especially if you’re going to a special event like a dinner or a wedding. However, to keep your jewelry pristine and well-maintained, you should avoid wearing 24/7. Always take it off while showering, swimming, cooking, and cleaning to keep the jewelry safe.