Gold filled is perfect if you are looking for a higher quality product than plating, but a cheaper alternative to solid gold! Unlike plating, gold fill can last a lifetime if looked after.
Gold fill is made by mechanically bonding a layer of gold to a layer of base metal, usually brass.
The gold is bonded to the surface of the brass using heat and pressure, making it a permanent bond, so the gold won’t flake, peel or fall of like gold plating!
In the UK we have this regulated by law where the total weight of a gold filled item must contain 5% (or 1/20) of gold – anything less than this cannot be called gold filled.
As a comparison, in gold plating – there is usually less than 0.05% of the product weight in gold!
How should I store it?
Scratches can be difficult to remove on gold filled items without exposing the brass core, so I recommend storing in separate compartments to other pieces of jewellery – ideally wrapped in tissue to keep it protected and always store in a dry space.
How should I clean it?
The main thing to avoid is anything that would scratch the surface so I would stick to really simple methods:
Mild soapy water and a soft toothbrush
Soft polishing cloth – sometimes polishing cloths with chemicals are not recommended for gold fill so would avoid these and use a standard microfiber cloth.