If you want to change your consumer habits to become more eco-conscious, then it is worth avoiding gold-plated jewelry. You may be a big fan of jewelry. In this case, you may be wondering why you should avoid particular pieces. Read on to learn why certain purchases are so critical concerning our environmental impact.
What is Gold-Plated Jewelry?
Firstly, it might be worth establishing what this type of jewelry actually is. Gold-plated jewelry is pieces of decorative metal consisting of another metal layer on top. For example, this can be liquid gold. Since this layer of gold plating is extremely thin, jewelry pieces of this type are more affordable than solid gold and silver pieces.
These jewelry pieces lose their plating quickly and expose the cheaper metals they are constructed of. They have often been known to turn human skin green in the process and frequently end up in landfills. We also should not forget the nasty chemicals utilized in the process of making these pieces. Most of these toxic substances wash away into our water systems to pollute them.
Does Gold-Plated Jewelry Last
This type of jewelry is disposed of quickly due to breakage, and the materials are not biodegradable. These materials are frequently glued in place with toxic chemicals, making them a colossal cause of environmental pollution. So, while you aren't getting your money's worth of these cheap, short-lasting products, you are also inflicting almost irreversible damage on our environment.
What Are The Conditions of Where These Pieces Are Made?
Gold-plated jewelry manufacturing and delivery processes are unlikely to be sustainable and ethical. Think of the laborers working to produce these cheap materials. Are they being paid fairly? Are they being treated fairly? It is certainly worth researching every brand you buy from to figure out these vital pieces of information. Otherwise, you could be contributing to an unethical process just by flashing cheap jewelry around your neck or wrist.
What is Solid Gold And Silver?
Solid gold refers to a material that has a very high percentage of pure gold. It has the potential to be an alloy, which you can read in jewelry product descriptions, such as 14 karats, or 18 karats, for example. Alloys are metals blended with others to improve their properties or modify their color. After all, rose gold is becoming an incredibly trendy product these days.
The same goes for solid silver - it must have an incredibly high percentage of silver, while silver plate refers to pieces mainly constructed of other metals and coated in a thin silver layer.
Why Are Solid Gold And Silver Pieces Actually Better For Us And Our Environment?
Buying solid gold and solid silver items from sustainable brands is sure to offer you better quality, longer-lasting products and the peace of mind that workers in this manufacturing process are being treated as they should. With sound quality, you will be able to treasure your gold and silver pieces in a way you have never been able to do with your gold-plated jewelry. Thus, you can keep materials within our circular economy, reducing the demand for the production of more unnecessary resources.
Furthermore, buying vintage means no new materials were needed to produce the jewelry piece in question. While this means you are buying secondhand, this also helps our environment by using materials for as long as possible instead of throwing them away at landfill sites.
There are so many actionable takeaways that consumers can learn from this article.
Firstly, there are countless actions consumers can take to make a change - even something as simple as buying the appropriate jewelry option.
Next, businesses can benefit from selling solid gold and silver over lower-quality gold-plated alternatives. As modern customers are becoming more conscious about their environmental impact, there will be a higher demand for quality solid gold and silver products in the coming years.
Finally, it is apparent that individuals can generate a real difference in our ecosystem. By making the right purchasing choices, you have the power to help our planet thrive a little more today!