For thousands of years, gold has been the most desirable metal for mankind. Even today, jewelry made of it is recognized as an indicator of high social status and a symbol of wealth.
Gold was considered a precious metal and highly prized for centuries before Christ. This is evidenced by historical documents and the things that archaeologists find during excavations. The most beautiful decorations and insignia have been made of this metal long since ancient times. Coins of the highest value were minted from it. The residences of the wealthiest people and their tombs were decorated with gold.
Gold will never lose its relevance for a number of reasons:
- It does not oxidize or tarnish
- It retains its appearance for a long time
- It looks very beautiful
That is why gold jewelry is the most popular among buyers.
However, today you can find many fakes, and products made of this precious metal are no exception. The percentage of gold in the declared sample is much lower or absent altogether.
A considerable amount of counterfeit jewelry comes from other countries, such as China, Turkey, or Italy. Customs officers detain batches of fakes, but they are only small compared to the total amount.
The technology of counterfeiting has reached such heights that even specialists cannot tell fakes from real gold.
The statistics in different countries persistently demonstrate similar shocking figures: thus, according to the most optimistic calculations, about 40-45% of all jewelry pieces you can buy in no-name jewelry stores are not genuine. Gold has always been counterfeited at all times. Since the advent of gold, the first counterfeits appeared. Do many people wonder how to check the authenticity of gold?
We suggest you watch a video from which you can understand how wide the problem is and how easy it is to come across as a fake.
Therefore, the choice of gold should be approached with the utmost care and caution.
How to Distinguish Fake Jewelry?
There are many ways to distinguish fake jewelry from the real thing. Here are just a few of them:
- Checking the mark
- Magnetic properties
- Reaction with acid
- Weight test
- Sound test
As you can see, there are many ways. Let’s look at each of them.
Checking the Mark
Every gold item necessarily presents a stamp. This is the main indicator of impurities in the product, which is put in the control institutions and guarantees the presence of precious metal in the alloy. Examine it carefully.
If you see the numbers 10K (also replaced by 417), 14K (replaced by 585), 18K (may be replaced by 750), or 24K (replaced by 999), then you are dealing with real gold.
Fakes don’t usually have a stamp or use GP (gold plated) or GF (gold filled).
However, scammers who counterfeit gold know very well that the first thing the buyer will look at is the mark. That’s why you can find even those that are branded like genuine articles among the fakes.
For this reason, never stop checking the branding and use other methods we suggest.
Pure gold is not magnetically attracted. The higher the percentage of gold in the item, the less it is magnetized. Accessories made of base metals, on the other hand, will react instantly to a magnet.
It is important to note that you cannot use a weak magnet in this test. For example, a souvenir from the fridge will not do.
Watch the video to find out how you can use the magnet for check:
You should also know that copper, bronze, and aluminum also do not react to a magnet, which is used by unfair sellers.
Reaction With Acid
This is a simple test that uses the reaction of gold with acid to prove its originality. All you have to do is lightly scratch the surface and add a small drop of trioxonitrate (V) acid (HNO3). If the jewelry does not react with the acid, its surface remains unchanged, then it is genuine gold. However, if a green or milky coloring is observed, it’s fake.
A fake jewelry’s weight is typically another way to identify its authenticity. Real jewelry will generally weigh far more than items made of other metals, including nickel. If you can hold your jewelry easily, it might be gold-plated.
When dropped on a hard and smooth surface, gold makes a tinkling sound similar to the clinking of broken crystal glasses.
If you have a gold ring of which you are sure, compare its sound with the one you are going to buy. The sound should be the same.
Only someone with a good ear for music can identify gold by its sound. However, according to many jewelers, this is the most proven method, especially when it comes to identifying gold at home.
Bread is often used as an indicator. Cut a small piece and place the accessory in the pulp. Leave for several days to dry the bread. Then break it down and see: if there is oxidation, then the gold was not used in manufacturing the thing.
Unfortunately, such a check can only be done at home after the purchase of the item.
The product must necessarily have a tag with a barcode and other information. The barcode contains information about the name of the product, its article, the manufacturer and its location, the metal, and the proof, as well as the weight.
According to this data, you can make a request to the manufacturer, and they should provide you with information about whether it is their jewelry or not.
Gold jewelry comes in several shades ranging from white to pinkish, deep yellow, green, and chocolate. This depends on the other metals included in the alloy. However, this is already a serious signal if there are other, sharper color inclusions or initial turbidity in the color scheme.
Take a piece of metal in your hand, rub it, and then put your palms to your nose – you will definitely smell metal. This smell is extremely difficult to confuse with anything else.
If you carry out this procedure with a gold piece, there will be no smell at all.
A quick check on the authenticity of gold with ceramics will require a ceramic plate or tile. All you have to do is scratch the plate with the object with medium effort. If a gray or black line is left, the authenticity of the jewelry should be seriously questioned.
How to Avoid Fakes?
However, the most important tip that you should always follow when buying gold jewelry isn’t about how to distinguish the original piece from the fake.
The main thing when buying gold jewelry is to buy it in specialized stores, which have a good reputation and all sorts of certificates confirming their accreditation.
Buying gold jewelry from the official manufacturer or a trusted jewelry store will save you a lot of time and nerves. Imagine the situation if the wedding and engagement rings, which are usually bought alone for life, turn out to be fake. It is possible to break up a relationship with a partner who may feel that you simply saved on it.
Watch videos to find out how else you can tell gold from fake:
So in all cases, go only to specialized accredited stores. And the joy of buying will never be replaced by disappointment.