Difference Between Gold Plated and Gold Filled

The main difference between gold plated and gold filled is that gold plated jewelry has a thin layer of gold whereas gold filled jewelry has a thicker gold layer and is more durable.

If you are planning to buy gold jewelry, you have to know the difference between solid gold, gold plated, and gold filled jewelry. Solid gold jewelry is jewelry that is made entirely out of gold, while gold plated and gold filled have outer layers of gold.

Key Terms

Gold Plated, Gold Filled, Jewelry, Gold Jewelry

Difference Between Gold Plated and Gold Filled - Comparison Summary

What Does Gold Plated Mean

Gold plating refers to a process where a thin layer of gold is deposited on the surface of a metal. Gold plating is quite a common process in the world of jewelry. It’s almost impossible to identify the difference between real gold jewelry and gold plated jewelry just by looking at them.

Compare Gold Plated and Gold Filled - What is the difference?

Furthermore, the process of gold plating is not very difficult and involves only a few simple steps. First of all, the surface of the metal that’s to be plated (we call this the base metal) has to be cleaned thoroughly. Oil or dust on the base metal will prevent the gold layer from bonding properly with the metal. Then, jewelry-makers add a layer of nickel onto the base metal. This helps to protect the gold layer from the base metal. Finally, they dip the jewelry in containers holding gold and use a positive electrical charge to fuse the gold layer to the metal. Once the gold layer is thick enough, jewelry is dried.

We can use most metals as base metals. Silver, copper, brass, nickel, tungsten, titanium, and stainless steel are some metals we can use. However, jewelry manufacturing mainly uses metals like silver and copper for gold plating.

What Does Gold Filled Mean

Gold filling refers to the process of joining a base metal with an outer layer of gold. This is another common process in jewelry-making. Gold-filled jewelry has a thicker outer layer of gold than gold plated jewelry. These gold layers can have various karatages, including 10K, 14K, 18K, and 24K. In fact, gold filled jewelry contains several layers of solid gold around the base metal. Therefore, it has a greater amount of gold than gold plated jewelry. In gold filling, the base metal is generally brass. Moreover, the process of using solid gold sheets around the base metal ensures that jewelry does not peel, chip, tarnish, or discolor easily.

Gold Plated vs Gold Filled

The process of gold filling involves sandwiching the base metal between two layers of gold, heating them, and then passing them through a roller several times. This process makes sure that metals are bonded together and the sheets are thinned out.

Difference Between Gold Plated and Gold Filled

Definition

Gold plated jewelry is jewelry made by depositing a thin gold layer on a base metal, whereas gold filled jewelry is jewelry made by joining a base metal with outer layers of gold.

Gold Layer

Gold-filled jewelry has thicker outer layers of gold than gold plated jewelry.

Amount of Gold

Gold filled jewelry has a greater amount of gold than gold plated jewelry.

Durability

Moreover, gold filled jewelry is more durable than gold plated jewelry as it does not peel, chip, tarnish, or discolor easily.

Price

In addition, gold filled jewelry is more expensive than gold plated jewelry.

Conclusion

Gold filled and gold plated jewelry are two alternatives people use for solid gold jewelry. The main difference between gold plated and gold filled is that gold plated jewelry has a thin layer of gold, whereas gold filled jewelry has a thicker gold layer and is more durable.