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Types of Metals Used for Jewellery

Whether you buy a necklace, ring, or pair of earrings, it is essential to consider the types of metal used for jewellery. Today, we explore the best metals used for fine jewellery and cover the jewellery materials to avoid.

Why is the choice of metal important for jewellery?

It doesn't matter whether you're a silver or yellow gold person or you enjoy mixing metals; it's important to invest in high-quality jewellery. But why is the choice of metal important? Pieces made with high-quality metals will last forever. Precious metals are resistant and hold their value over time, whereas a cheaper choice in metal will result in a piece that degrades quickly.

Value and durability aren't the only winning factors; precious metals are better on your skin. Jewellery that is made with cheaper metals can often irritate and leave marks on your skin.

Metals are commonly alloyed to increase the strength of the metal, but you need to be aware of the metals contained in the alloy to avoid skin reactions.

Why does low-quality jewellery irritate the skin?

Typically, the types of metal used for jewellery that bring on skin irritation include aluminium, brass and nickel. These metals are common allergens that typically sit beneath the gold or silver plating or are mixed with precious metals. Those with sensitive skin or nickel allergies may experience an itchy rash when wearing jewellery of lower-quality metals. Investing in comfortable non-irritant metals is the way to go.

Types of metal used in high-quality jewellery collections

Although precious metals have many unique variations; gold, sterling silver and platinum are primary metals used in high-quality jewellery collections.


Gold is a shiny, naturally yellow-coloured metal that holds high value. It is often alloyed with other metals to make it easier to work with and create jewellery.

Gold is known to have relaxing properties and is extremely popular for all forms of jewellery. You can count on gold jewellery as a comfortable and durable metal that holds its value for a long time.

Gold in its purest form is very soft, for this reason when used in jewellery, it is often mixed with other metals. As a greater proportion of other metals is added to gold, the lower the carat, 9ct gold for example, the more hard wearing the gold becomes. As such, the higher the carat, 18ct gold, the more care that needs to be taken with the jewellery.

White Gold

As gold is naturally a yellow colour, other metals such as palladium are sometimes added to it to make it whiter in appearance, creating white gold. As it never achieves a pure white colour, most white gold is electroplated in a solution of rhodium.

Our 1899 18ct white gold used in rings has an exceptionally high palladium component, being at least 50% of the alloyed metal used, along with no nickel. This high standard of quality results in improved durability and appearance over a longer period of time compared to other white metals, and ensures it is suitable for all skin types.


Sterling Silver

This precious metal, like gold, retains its value while being incredibly durable. Pure silver is non-irritating but is extremely soft. Due to this, pure silver is often alloyed with copper to create sterling silver. Sterling silver is fairly cost-effective and a great choice for sensitive skin making this metal perfect for jewellery.


Platinum has a similar appearance to sterling silver and white gold, just slightly darker. 

Not only is platinum more expensive than gold but in jewellery, it is also used in higher purity, normally 95%. This high level of purity gives platinum hypoallergenic properties.

Invest in high-quality jewellery from Walker & Hall

Ultimately, you can't go wrong with gold, sterling silver or platinum jewellery! Each has its winning qualities, and it's up to you to find out what speaks to you. Whether you're celebrating yourself or a special someone in your life, Walker & Hall is here to make it a memory.

Our jewellery is made from high-quality precious metals, designed to last a lifetime. Discover our gorgeous collections and make your moment last forever.

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