If you’re wondering why so many brides are saying “I do” to platinum, you’re not alone. While many of us have been prepped on the “4 Cs” of diamonds, we’ve kind of been left in the dark about the differences between gold wedding rings and platinum wedding rings – and why it’s so popular.
Platinum is both rarer and purer than gold — one of the reasons why its price has been increasing over the years, just as the demand for it has been increasing (in February 2003, its price exceeded $700 per ounce for the first time in over 20 years). It’s 35 times more rare than gold, and is found in very few places in the world — mainly South Africa and Russia — and only 88 tons of platinum are made into jewelry each year. It literally takes eight weeks and 10 tons of ore to produce one single ounce of platinum!
- * Platinum has an extremely high melting temperature. In its purest form it melts at 3214 degrees F, almost twice the temperature needed to melt 14 karat gold.
- All the platinum ever mined would produce a cube 17 feet on each side, less than 5000 cubic feet.
- It takes up to 10 tons of ore to produce one ounce of platinum, more than twice as much ore that is typically needed for an ounce of gold.
- Platinum is not susceptible to problems like stress corrosion or stress cracking as can be the case with white gold. (This problem mainly applies to prong settings etc. Don’t worry, your white gold wedding band will not suffer this problem).
Platinum is about 95% pure (as compared to 18-karat gold, which is about 75% pure). All metals have alloys, or blends of other metals, but platinum has very few alloys, so it doesn’t fade or change color, and retains its shine for years. Many think that white gold is comparable to platinum since they both appear to be the same color. But what many of us don’t know is that white gold is simply yellow gold with white alloys added to it, so it’s not uncommon, after many years of wear, for a white gold ring to return to its natural yellow color. Platinum, however, will retain its pure white luster for your entire lifetime and then some, ensuring you can pass down your most precious possession to your daughter and she to hers.
PLATINUM is the hardest of the precious metals, it never tarnishes. Its intense luster remains intact over the years, and it is completely hypoallergenic.
If and when you decide to say “I do” to platinum’s rarity, durability, purity and limitless eternal qualities, forever will truly mean forever.
Follow these easy tips to help keep your ring looking as great as the day you got engaged:
- Store your ring separately from other pieces of jewelry so it doesn’t get scratched. If it does get scratched, have it polished by a jeweler.
- Keep your ring in a safe place and remember to have it sufficiently insured. If you’re not sure about its value, take it to your local jeweler for valuation.
- Clean your ring periodically with a pre-packaged jewelry cleaner or soak it in mild soap and warm water, then gently rub it with a soft cloth. You should also have it professionally cleaned about every six months.
- Platinum is extremely dense, and remarkably heavy. Much more so than silver or gold. This property of platinum enhances and ennobles the quality of the jewelry from which it is created.
- Find a qualified jeweler for adjustments, resizing, polishing, and cleaning, and make sure they have a platinum trained bench worker.
- Over time, platinum develops a natural patina that many people prefer over the “just polished” look. When this happens, you can take your ring to a qualified jeweler to have it re-polished to a high-gloss look if you prefer.
- Take your ring off when cleaning, gardening, doing any kind of heavy work, or when working with bleach and harsh chemicals. Although the chemicals won’t damage the platinum, they may discolor diamonds and other gems.