What is Rhodium?

By Nikki Riela | April 11, 2019

This is a question that we constantly get when we get gold jewelry that needs buffing and polishing or when a customer comes in and says “I love this piece but I don’t like the yellow gold, is there anything we can do to change that?” The answer is YES! 

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But, let’s take it a few steps back. What exactly is Rhodium? Rhodium is a silver-white metal that is hard and part of the platinum family on the periodic table. It’s wonderful because it resists corrosion and oxidation in moist air - unlike sterling silver. Rhodium also increases the durability when used as a plating on other jewelry.

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Rhodium plating is most commonly added to white gold or silver jewelry - the most common pieces of jewelry that get Rhodium plated are engagement rings and wedding bands - this increases the shine and durability and of course takes a yellow gold piece of jewelry to white. Sterling Silver jewelry is often plated to prevent tarnishing. 

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A huge upside to Rhodium plating is that it is nickel free, which makes it hypoallergenic. 

The one downside of rhodium plating is that although it can increase the shine and durability of your jewelry it is only a plating, which means that over time it will come off and you will eventually need to replate your jewelry. Keep in mind that although replating is done every few years but depending on your body chemistry the plating may need to be re-done more often. 

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Have something that you would like to have plated? Come on by and we’ll be happy to help you!

Jay Garcia