Are you in search of a white metal alloy? Confused about which one to get – palladium vs 14k white gold? Well, we have got your back with a complete top to the bottom description of both metals! Either you want a better style, a durable structure, or affordable, we have got it all for you.
Basic Knowledge about both metals:
Before we get to a real discussion between palladium vs 14k white gold, it’s better to learn what really are they?
What is 14k white gold?
For ages, we have seen gold as a precious metal choice for wedding and event accessories. The gold’s yellowish hue and natural warm make it romantic and timeless indeed. Though, white gold these days places a bold mark on the trending list.
The white gold compounds mainly include pure gold with alloy combinations of silver, palladium, nickel, zinc, and copper. Also, jewelers re-coat the accessory to add a rhodium plating to it, which increases the durability and whitish hue of the metal.
Gold itself is considered a hypoallergenic metal, and so is the white gold – the one with rhodium plating. However, white gold jewelry for getting into any shape requires alloy mixtures, which might include nickel and copper that can cause skin allergies.
What is Palladium?
Palladium belongs to the platinum group metals (PGMs), which consists of six metal elements – iridium, ruthenium, palladium, rhodium, osmium, and platinum. Out of them, palladium being the one with lower melting and density points. Leaving the platinum metal, palladium is one of the other elements from the PGM group that can be used as a primary component for making accessories.
The debate ‘palladium vs 14k white gold’ falls for palladium being far more affordable than 14k white gold. The palladium metal is rarer than platinum but is a fairly durable metal that shapes out to be stunning and unique for jewelry items. Moreover, palladium is light-weighted, which makes it perfect for those who are not accustomed to wearing accessories.
Detail talk on Palladium vs 14k white gold:
A Search for Affordability – Budget Matters:
Do not mix palladium with platinum, which is a quite expensive metal. Palladium is more of an economic metal that is not only used for jewelry items, but for practical purposes too. Palladium being affordable than 14k white gold yet beautiful makes it one of the popular metals in jewelry items.
Those searching for trending jewelry options might coincide with both 14k white gold and palladium metals. Depending on the purity of metal compounds, markets, and availability, palladium generally is cheaper than white gold. Also, it is possible that you might find the same price ranges for either palladium or white gold jewelry items if you know how, and where, to search.
The win for palladium vs 14k white gold: Palladium is more affordable.
Palladium vs White Gold – Durability win:
The durability of any item is what clicks to our mind when looking for one. In terms of tested durability, palladium is a harder metal comparative to white gold. On the Mohs hardness scale, gold rates about 2.5 while palladium has a 4.8 rating.
As far as the durability for white gold is considered, it is more dependent on the purity of gold in alloy mixture – 10k, 14k, or above. Though a higher karat white gold jewelry might shake your budget, and be slightly less durable, yet is a precious choice to add to the collection.
The win for palladium vs 14k white gold: 14k white gold is more durable and strong.
Hypoallergenic metal – The main concern:
Another important factor to consider while looking for jewelry is its hypoallergenic nature. Since most people face allergic reactions to certain metals, it’s always better to be safe! Any unusual irritation, rashes, blistering, or redness after wearing an accessory is a common way to figure out metal allergies.
Being allergic to nickel metal is the most common, and your white gold jewelry item might contain it as an alloy mixture. Therefore, palladium is a safer bet to make, if you’re sure you suffering from such an allergy. Also, you can buy white gold accessories that are nickel-free, just confirm it from your jeweler before purchasing one. Easy step to figuring out whether you have an allergy or not:
1. It is likely that you might be having simple irritation for a new jewelry item if it reacts instantly after you wear it. This means that there is no nickel compound in the piece! A clean and dry finger might be enough to resolve the irritation problem.
2. On contrast, if the reaction to the accessory develops and slowly, it resembles that nickel is present. Check this article to find out alternate ways and future guidance to deal with such situations:
The win for palladium vs 14k white gold: Palladium is more hypoallergenic in nature comparative to white gold.
Is palladium easy to maintain or white gold?
Consider 14k white gold and palladium as no exceptions as all precious metals require proper maintenance. Getting timely polishing to keep the new look is the main concern until the jewelry piece is part of some incident.
Palladium metal demands frequent polishing compared to white gold. For white gold, you have to get re-plating of the accessory after some time for it to retain its look. Use a polishing cloth to keep both metals clean and maintained for longer periods.
The appearance of accessory:
Keeping the price and durability of the metal aside, we see here which metals appear to be better than the other. White gold and palladium are both precious and beautiful metals yet differ slightly in terms of aesthetics. Palladium is a naturally white metal, about a shade that’s less white than platinum.
You can opt for a matte (scratching develops Platina) or shiny finish (rhodium plating) of an accessory according to your preference. Usually, people go for palladium if they want a matte finish for the jewelry item. White gold accessories are naturally a bit less bright than palladium accessories, due to the rhodium plating comparative to the natural gold plating.
The advantage is that the white gold jewelry maintains its original shiny finish. The white gold appearance is quite similar to silvery tint, which turns more golden over time. This is because white gold is mixed with alloys to improve durability. Also, if you don’t like this transformative nature, you can later recoat with a rhodium coating to retain the white shine.
If you want a softer look or a touch of gold, you might go for white gold jewelry, while palladium is a better choice for silver and bright white jewelry pieces.
The win for palladium vs 14k white gold: It is a matter of preference for each individual.
Other factors to consider when selecting between palladium vs 14k white gold?
Multiple other factors can be considered when deciding between palladium and white gold. From price and appearance to durability, both metals are precious or beautiful jewelry options to add to your collection. Similarly, both have their cons and plus points depending on your personal choice and challenges.
Climate – the exposure to different elements, and how these metals react in return plays a major role in deciding on which one to select from palladium vs 14k white gold metal. As discussed above, both of them are durable metals yet differ in vulnerabilities depending on the surrounding environment.
The disadvantage for palladium is that it’s susceptible to extreme heat condition, it doesn’t have the heat transfer properties like white gold. Plus, another disadvantage is that it’s not acid-resistant, which means it can crack, and wear & tear under extreme stress, due to its hardness. While, its advantages include corrosion-resistant nature – including protection against friction and natural weather.
On the other hand, white gold doesn’t wear and tear off easily. White gold can be softer, and you can wear them easily on your wrist, neck, etc. Plus, white gold also features a heat-resistant element.
So which one to go for? Well, it certainly depends on the area the metal is going exposed to frequently. For extreme hot and humid surroundings, white is a better choice, while palladium works better for hasher cold climates! Overall, considering the usual wear and tear, either one will go as a decent pick.
General Tips for both metals
Make sure to keep in practice the proper maintenance and cleaning of the metal. For keeping it clean, rinse your jewelry item with mild dishwashing soap to remove any dirt particles on the top. You can get some D.I.Y tips to keep it clean as always
For maintenance, book visits your jeweler on regular basis, and keep it away from harmful chemicals, including chlorine used in swimming pools and household cleaners.