What is the Difference Between Gold Filled and Gold Plated

What is the Difference Between Gold Filled and Gold Plated?

Metal allergies are a serious problem for some people.

Especially for pieces that come into direct contact with the skin, such as jewelry.

In recent years, it is said that the number of people who develop this type of allergy is increasing because there are more opportunities to come into direct contact with allergen-causing metals.

What is a metal allergy in the first place?

Today, we will be talking about:

  • Causes
  • Symptoms

In addition, we have introduced some materials that are free of allergens and are less likely to cause reactions.

For example:

  • Silver 925 (sterling silver)
  • Surgical stainless steel
  • Titanium

These items are also very popular as metals used in jewelry because they are less likely to cause any adverse reactions.

Necklaces, earrings, and rings, etc. crafted from the above materials are in high demand because they touch the skin for a prolonged amount of time.

This time, we will be introducing different types of gold such as:

  • Gold filled
  • Gold plated

What is gold filled in the first place and how is it different from gold plating?


Besides categorizing gold based on its plating method, gold is also classified according to the difference in gold content.

You may have heard of 24K, 18K, 14K, and 10K.

The higher the number, the higher the gold content.

24K gold is actually pure gold with purity at 99.99%.

Gold is measured in 24 parts.

18K gold has 75% gold content (18/24)

14K gold has 58% gold content (14/24)

10K gold has 42% gold content (10/24)

Of course, pure gold is very expensive, so you can keep the price down by mixing it with alloys of other metals (silver, copper, palladium).

Jewelry crafted from 14-karat gold and 10-karat gold are popular as gifts because the price is reasonable while still being a solid-quality gold piece.


The difference in the rank of gold explained earlier is the gold content.

Gold-filled and gold-plated are brass and other metal products coated with a gold film.

Metal plating can also be used as a type of coloured finish.

Also known as gold-plated, a thin film of gold is attached to a product made of brass or other metal.


Gold-filled is made by pouring brass into a hollow mold made of 14-karat gold, rather than just sticking a film from the outside like plating.


Did you understand the meaning of the word “plating”?

Somehow, when you hear the word “gold-plating”, you might get the impression that you are painting on gold paint.

However, in reality, more advanced technology is used.

Here is a quick introduction to the differences in plating technology that many people do not know about.

First of all, there are roughly two types of gold plating: Gold Plated Gold Plating (GP) and Gold Filled Gold Plating (GF).

GP is a method of forming a very thin gold film on the surface of metal by electrolysis.

Of course, the drawback is that it can be easily peeled off by friction or impact, which makes the metal under the plating visible.

On the other hand, GF is a method of pouring metal into a gold tube and covering it with a thick gold film.

The thickness of the gold part of GF is about 100 times that of GP, and it has the advantage of being more durable than GP and keeping the brilliance of gold for a long time.

Gold plating is a metal product with a thin gold film of 0.1 micron or less, but in the case of gold filled, 14K gold must be used for 1/20 (5%) of the total weight.

The gold-filled gold layer is 100 times thicker than gold-plated.

It has the advantage of long-lasting beautiful colour and brilliance.

In addition, it is said to be a material that can be used by people with metal allergies because the gold film is thick and rust and chipping of the external gold layer are unlikely to occur.

Of course, the price will be more expensive than gold-plated jewelry.

We recommend using gold-filled items for parts that come into contact with the skin more often, and use gold-plated items for parts that have less contact with the skin!


Real gold and plating have different weights.

Real gold is quite heavy. 

On the other hand, gold-plated products are lightweight since not a lot of gold content is in the piece.


Is gold-filled or gold-plated better? 

There’s no right answer.

Plated accessories that shine with your favourite brand or your favourite design can be more important than real gold jewelry that does not suit your tastes.

As mentioned in this article, there are high quality construction methods such as gold filled, which looks the same as real solid gold.

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