What is 14k gold filled?

I have gotten many questions over the past year or so, with lots of ladies asking me what 14k gold filled is exactly. Is it gold plated? What’s the base? Is it solid gold? So I thought I’d do a quick blog post to share more because that’s what I use in my jewelry. 

What is 14k gold filled? 

14k gold filled is a thick layer of solid 14k gold, pressure bonded onto base material. 

To give you an idea of what the difference is between gold filled and gold plated pieces, gold plated pieces usually are plated with 2-3 layers of gold at most, or contain 0.05% gold....  whereas 14k gold filled has 5%! 

Gold filled is a great alternative to solid gold for those who have sensitive skin or earring holes. Only a small percentage of people would be hyper sensitive to it. 

Does gold filled tarnish? 

Ahh.. the golden question. And I will be honest with you. 

Anything that isn’t at least made in 14k SOLID gold will have the possibility of tarnish. 

However, I have customers who never have problems with tarnish and their jewelry remains good and shiny for years. Much of the Victorian-era jewelry was made in gold filled and thousands of these pieces are still shiny and beautiful today after 100 years!

But there is a very small percentage who do see some wear to their gold filled jewelry. Why does it happen to some and not others? 

What causes tarnish, and how can I care for my gold filled jewelry? 

There are some factors that contribute to this, and ways we can prevent it  

1. Top of the list would have to be INDIVIDUAL BODY CHEMISTRY, and let’s add Singapore’s HUMIDITY to that! 

Unfortunately, some may have more acid in their sweat, some may touch their jewelry often and chemicals react with the materials on their gold filled items. Nothing much can be done about this, but gently wiping your jewelry with an almost dry- but slightly damp cloth, and allowing it to air dry before storing it, can be very helpful to extend your jewelry’s lifespan. 

2. CHEMICALS like perfume, hairspray, and even SUNSCREEN can react to your jewelry and cause tarnish too. 

So wear your jewelry only AFTER spraying your perfume or hairspray, and allow them to dry first! 

3. STORING of your jewelry.... I can’t reiterate it more.. please store your jewelry in ZIPLOC bags! 😆 This creates an airtight space so none of the humidity or air can mix and oxidize your precious jewelry. 

So the takeaway from this blog post is... 14k gold filled is the next best alternative to solid gold, and should not tarnish easily. But because it isn’t solid gold, I’ll be honest here and say, yes there is a VERY small chance of your gold filled jewelry tarnishing if not cared for properly. 

Having said all that, 14k gold filled is a high quality material, perfect for those who are looking for good quality pieces, want the look and feel of solid gold but aren’t willing to pay 5 times the amount for something similar. 

I hope this post helped you understand 14k gold filled better! ❤️