Monthly Archives: September 2017


    Platinum and 18kt White Gold are the two most commonly used metals for the setting of engagement rings, wedding rings and other pieces of jewellery. Whilst these two metals may have a very similar appearance, they do have unique benefits and proprieties that are very important to compare and consider when deciding upon the choice of metal for your valued piece of jewellery.  The main factors to consider is the difference between Platinum and 18 carat White Gold in terms of purity, appearance, weight and comfort during wear, durability, scratching during wear, and of course comparative cost of both metals.

    White Gold RIng against Platinum RIng after one year of Wear

     (Left to Right) 18kt White Gold Ring Next to a Platinum Ring after one year of Wear (C) Reve Diamonds

    This first difference between Platinum and 18k White Gold is the most basic and therefore can be considered as the foundation of all the other differences between the two metals.  Platinum and 18k White Gold are essentially different metals and have different purity levels.

    Platinum is a naturally occurring white metal. It is heavier, harder and rarer than gold. Due to its natural hardness Platinum can be used in a purer form than gold, usually at about 95% - a Platinum hallmark has a fineness of 900 to 950 parts and 5/10% of other alloys.

    In comparison 18K White Gold does not exist naturally as it starts out as gold which is of course yellow in colour. White Gold is achieved by an alloy of yellow gold with other white metals such as silver, nickel, zinc or palladium which bleach the deep yellow of pure gold to make it white. The purity of White Gold is determined by the amount of alloy that is mixed with Gold and is expressed in carats (K) as with yellow gold. Hallmarked 18K White Gold has a fineness of 750 parts and 25% of other alloys.

    So in comparison for purity of metal, Platinum has a 90/95% purity compared to 75% purity of 18K White Gold. This factor consequently makes Platinum much more expensive than Gold which we will discuss later.


    When the finished article of jewellery made in Platinum and 18K White Gold they are often indistinguishable as both appear whitish grey in colour. However a distinguishing physical characteristic between Platinum and 18K White Gold is the natural colour.  Platinum is naturally white. However the white colour of 18K White Gold is created by the addition of alloys to yellow gold and the final white high lustre finish by the addition of rhodium plate, a silvery-white metal. It is the rhodium plating which gives 18K White Gold the white look that makes it look very similar to Platinum to the naked eye. With Platinum, no plating is required as the metal has a unique white, grey colour which becomes greyer over time.

    As Platinum is truly white it will always stay white and will not fade to yellow. However with 18K White Gold jewellery whilst rhodium is very white and very hard, eventually it will naturally wear away and fade to show the yellowish tinge of the original gold. Therefore to restore the whiteness and shine of 18K White Gold jeweller it will require rhodium plating again. This process can only be undertaken by a professional jeweller and here at Rêve Diamonds we are pleased to offer our valued customers rhodium plating, polishing and cleaning of their jewellery free for life when required.


    Platinum is a much denser metal than 18K White Gold (approximately 20% denser) and thus more material weight is needed to produce the same ring than from white gold.  For example a ring with 4mm width of metal and 2mm height will be up to 30% heavier when crafted in Platinum as compared to the same ring made in 18K White Gold in gram weight.

    This difference also has an impact upon the comfort of wear. Only individual personal choice can determine if you prefer to wear a heavier weight of ring as some people do find that lighter rings are more comfortable for everyday wear.  Of course design can have an influence upon the weight of a ring, but the relative weight of Platinum versus 18 k White Gold should be borne in mind when making a choice between these two metals.

    One additional benefit to wearing Platinum jewellery is that it is hypoallergenic. While for most people gold jewellery does not generally create an allergy issue, some can develop an allergic reaction from the nickel alloy used in gold rings. However if 18k White Gold is combined with a palladium based alloy that is free from nickel, allergy issues are avoided


    Both Platinum and 18K White Gold are strong and durable precious metals but of the two, Platinum is undoubtedly the stronger and more durable.  This is due to Platinum only containing 5/10% of alloy whereas 18k White Gold requires 25% alloyed metal. The reason for this is that gold as a metal is extremely soft therefore if it was used in its pure form in jewellery, it would quickly and easily bend out of shape. For this reason White Gold has to be mixed with harder alloy metals, to make it more rigid and durable in jewellery. Platinum has a lower alloy requirement and is far denser therefore making it more durable than 18K White Gold.

    The implication for this within jewellery design is that Platinum offers a far more secure and robust setting for diamonds and other gemstones than 18K White Gold. For example, the prongs holding the centre stone of a Platinum engagement ring are far less likely to break then those of an 18K White Gold   ring.

    In addition, Platinum loses very little weight during daily wear and indeed, during polishing. Therefore, in theory a Platinum ring will last a lot longer without the need for replacing the band. However, a well-made ring, whether 18K White Gold or Platinum should last for many years.


    Platinum has a tighter molecular structure than 18K White Gold enabling a mirror like finish compared to a high finish on the White Gold.  Yet whilst Platinum is widely acknowledged as being stronger and more durable it is a softer metal than 18k White Gold. This means that Platinum jewellery will be more prone to getting scratched than a similar item made from 18k White Gold would be.

    However it is important to note that when 18k White Gold is scratched, the gold is lost and therefore it clearly looks like a scratch whilst when Platinum is scratched, the Platinum gets moved from one place on the item to another. This develops what is referred to as a ‘patina finish’. A patina finish has the look of an antique or worn piece of jewellery which many people find highly desirable as this gives the item an heirloom feel.

    The bonus here is that with professional re-polishing of your jewellery this will help restore the item to near its original look for both Platinum and 18K White Gold and Rêve Diamonds include free lifetime polishing and re-plating so that you never need worry about inevitable snatching.


    • Platinum jewellery attracts a higher cost than 18K White Gold. There are four main reasons for this:
    • Platinum is far rarer than 18K White Gold, has a greater denser of weight and higher level of purity.

    Platinum is more difficult to work with as it is less malleable than 18k White Gold and therefore will require a highly experienced jeweller to create a high quality piece from this precious metal. This means that the labour cost is approximately 20% greater than with 18K White Gold.

    Platinum cannot be re-used and re-melted like 18K White Gold. Therefore, any scraps and filings must be sent to a refiner which is very expensive.

    Platinum jewellery is initially more expensive than 18K White Gold. However, it can be argued that Platinum is more cost effective in the long run because it does not require rhodium plating to keep it white, re-shanking or re-tipping of ring setting prongs.

    Platinum jewellery is the ideal choice for long term daily wear. It is the optimal setting for a diamond engagement ring due to its durability and long lasting colour. Platinum will also add brilliance and sparkle to the diamond resulting in a clean, sharp, luxurious look. However, if you still can’t decide between Platinum and 18k White Gold, don’t worry these precious metals are both great options. If your budget allows choose Platinum, if not then 18k White Gold is still a very precious metal and is an excellent choice.  If you have any questions on your choice of jewellery metal, please do not hesitate to contact the helpful professional team at Rêve Diamonds who will be happy to answer your questions.


    Proposing marriage with the gentleman on bended knee with a gift box opening to reveal a stunning diamond engagement ring has always been the classical way to make this life changing proposal. However, a recent market research survey undertaken by the team here at Rêve Diamonds & Fine Jewellery has shown that 40% of men in the UK now propose without a real diamond engagement ring.

    The survey also revealed that an astonishing 40% of men in the UK said that they proposed to their loved one using fake plastic rings purchased from a well-known online auction site, or alternatively used another method such as a letter to propose to their loved one.

    Whilst times of economic austerity may be making men more cautious when making a marriage proposal in not immediately investing in an engagement ring and using a substitute, the survey revealed that after receiving the magic answer of ‘yes’, they then went on to spend an average of £3000 on an engagement ring. In fact 50% of respondents told Rêve Diamonds that they had then gone on to spend between £3000 and £5000 on a diamond engagement ring and 40% of respondents chose their engagement ring together.

    If you are considering a marriage proposal and wish to delay purchasing an engagement ring, we have a few hints and tips on how to make a romantic and memorable proposal without a ring, including details of a fabulous new offer from Rêve Diamonds of a free Cubic Zirconia ring to use during your proposal:


    Making a marriage proposal should create a memory that will last a lifetime for both of you.  Not using an engagement ring to propose is no excuse for a proposal that is undertaken lightly or without planning. Creating magical memories requires careful and considerate planning and the time has to be right for both of you. Be sure that you both feel the same way and are ready to make the commitment of marriage, then when you are sure carefully plan and execute your proposal as you would do if you had made the commitment to buying an engagement ring so that when the moment comes it is one of the most romantic moments of your partner’s life.


    Whilst you may not use an engagement ring to propose there is undoubtedly still nothing as romantic as the gesture of the man (or woman) down on one knee, gazing into his beloved’s eyes and holding his/her hand whilst popping the question ‘will you marry me?’. This is the stuff that dreams are made of and whilst you may be breaking with tradition by not proposing with an engagement ring already bought, there is no reason why your proposal cannot be every bit as romantic . So why not make a feature of your plans to propose the element of getting down on one knee. Show your emotions and declare your love when the moment is right and make memories that will last a lifetime.


    Choose carefully the setting for your marriage proposal as this will be an important part of your memories.  Whether you chose to propose on a romantic weekend break in a city aboard, during a picnic in the countryside, over diner at a top class restaurant or even at the place where you first met, make sure that your chosen setting is special to both of you and a place that matters.


    Ok so it’s not the real thing but why not give your future wife/husband a costume jewellery Cubic Zirconia engagement ring when you make your proposal?  This is a great fun idea and Rêve Diamonds & Fine Jewellery are now offering their valued clients a Cubic Zirconia ring free of charge to be used during the proposal. This substitute ring can then be exchanged for the real thing when the couple return to purchase their chosen engagement ring from the company.  Measure the ring size of your spouse to be by ‘borrowing’ a ring from their jewellery box or trace the inside of the ring onto paper then take to Rêve Diamonds who will  provide you with a substitute Cubic Zirconia engagement ring to make your proposal with.

    However, when you give this Cubic Zirconia ring be sure to explain to your beloved that this IS NOT the real engagement ring but simply a token until you can both chose the diamond that she/he has set her heart upon from Rêve Diamonds– failure to do this may mean the joke is on you!


    If you have decided that you wish to create a romantic proposal without buying an engagement ring beforehand there is no reason why you should not replace the ring with the gift of a beautiful piece of jewellery that will provide a very special keepsake for your beloved.  A stunning diamond necklace, dazzling bracelet or exquisite pair of earrings is a thoughtful way to commemorate and celebrate your marriage proposal.  Rêve Diamonds & Fine Jewellery has a superb selection of exquisite pieces to choose from before returning to them to choose your engagement ring. Giving a piece of jewellery is the perfect way to show your love to your partner and the world before you both choose the engagement ring after your proposal.


    If you have kept a special memento perhaps from your first date such as a concert ticket, a photograph, a train ticket, or anything else that symbolises your relationship and that means something to both of you, why not use it to create a new memory as part of your proposal.  Perhaps frame the item or create a memory book if you have more than one and give this to your beloved with the promise that the next part of your memories will be choosing your engagement ring.


    There is nothing so touching as a personal gift and nothing as romantic as a poem, song or letter that is dedicated to the one you love.  This is a gift that your loved one will cherish forever so use your words wisely and create a beautiful and romantic masterpiece to use in your proposal that will bring her tears of joy. Tell her what she means to you and at the end ask her to marry you.


    An engagement ring is traditionally viewed as a symbol of the love between two people. It should not be seen as something that your love depends upon, or that its value demonstrates the depth of your affection. A proposal of marriage with a substitute Cubic Zirconia ring (or even without a ring) can be an extremely significant landmark in the start of your lives together as it shows that to you both the ring is purely a symbol. Therefore if your partner is unhappy or upset about not having a real diamond engagement ring from the very start, then maybe their reaction may signify that it is time to rethink the possibility of your commitment married life together.

    If you do choose to make a proposal with a substitute Cubic Zirconia ring from Rêve Diamonds, do not make the explanation as to why there is no real gemstone ring at that point in time the focus of the occasion.  You both need to focus on your happiness, the fact that you are in love and are planning on starting your new lives together.  Enjoy what should be one of the happiest moments of your life.  When the emotion has calmed down later on then this is the time to explain why the real engagement ring will be bought post-proposal with a visit to Rêve Diamonds. Generally those couples who make a romantic proposal without a diamond engagement ring are in a relationship that is close enough that they both understand why this is so.

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