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White gold or platinum? It's one of the most common decisions in engagement ring shopping. If you prefer a silver band — and many do, believing it optimizes a diamond's sparkle — which do you choose? Some select white gold for its lower cost, knowing that the band will need to be "dipped" every so often to maintain its look. Others opt for platinum for its durability: its natural whiteness makes it resistant to yellowing. But it's important to know that the latter option has its own concern: platinum patina.
Platinum patina is the change in finish and texture that develops on platinum as a result of regular wear. It's often described as a satiny or slightly frosted finish, although it can vary in color and appearance. Overall, it's a slight loss of luster.
Platinum can show scratches, although the metal is resistant to permanent dings. Although platinum is stronger than 14-karat gold, it's actually somewhat softer. (We know that sounds confusing. Let us explain.) Along with the slightly frosted finish, scratches are considered part of platinum patina. But when gold is scratched, the gold finish is lost; when platinum is scratched, the platinum simply moves from one area on the ring to another. The metal can be moved back into place with polishing.
Depends who you ask! Some people love a vintage look and even ask if patina can be applied to a new ring. Others don't like the worn, antique appearance and prefer to maintain a freshly polished look. In Japan, platinum patina is actually treasured, as it's believed to symbolize one's journey along the path of life — wisdom, experience, perseverance and all that jazz.
Although platinum patina is common, there's no guarantee it will develop on your platinum ring. It depends on how often your ring is worn, the rigor you subject it to, and your personal taste! (One person's patina is another's warm glow.) Patina does tend to develop unevenly — the bottom of a ring will develop patina much faster than shoulders of the ring.
If it bothers you, there are easy ways to remove platinum patina. You can get your ring professionally polished; buff it yourself with a soft cloth to restore the shine; or carefully clean the ring with warm soapy water and a soft-bristled brush. You'll need to do this periodically, because patina does come back. Or you might not want to! Again, it's up to your personal aesthetic — after polishing up your platinum band, you might find you prefer the look of patina.
Ready to start shopping? With Clarity's beautiful selection of hand-crafted, ethically sourced engagement rings, plus free shipping and returns, replica home preview and lifetime warranty, will make your search for the perfect engagement ring easy.
We're here to help. With Clarity's expert gemologists can help you find the right ring for your life together. They're exceptionally experienced at working with each couple's priorities and budget — contact us now so they can help find the best ring for you.
Tapered diamond engagement ring
starting at: $1,420
Three stone trellis diamond engagement ring
starting at: $2,740
Three stone tapered baguette diamond engagement ring
starting at: $2,050
Channel set cathedral diamond engagement ring
Three stone pear diamond engagement ring
Platinum patina is the change in finish and texture that develops on platinum as a result of regular wear. Overall, it's a slight loss of luster and adds a slight texture to the ring.
Platinum patina is common to develop but It depends on how often your ring is worn, and Patina does tend to develop unevenly — the bottom of a ring will develop patina much faster. Patina does not affect the structure, durability or beauty of the ring.
Being about 20% denser than white gold, platinum is about two-and-a-half to five times more expensive than white gold for most engagement rings and wedding bands.
Platinum wins the durability competition. Since platinum is the most durable metal in addition to being the densest, it shouldn't be a surprise that this metal is also the most expensive. It's a great choice for engagement rings and wedding bands as those jewelry pieces come into contact with everything your hands touch.