Jewelry is forever: a business card and a value that lasts over time. But, sometimes, choosing the right jewel is not easy and immediate. Which jewelry metal works best with both budget-friendly and stylish? What will look best with your different occasions? And what color will fit me best, gold or silver? If you are confused and a bit lost, start here with our fundamental guide to jewelry materials.

As one of the oldest types of archaeological artifacts, jewelry is the most common form in cultures since 100,000 years of history, the oldest piece made from Nassarius shells thought to be the oldest one.

 Modern Fashion Jewelry - affordable with stylish

Fashion jewelry has been part of culture for almost 300 years. Since 18th century, jewelers began making pieces not only limited to precious metals (gold, platinum, palladium, and silver) but also the other mainstream metal materials that are widely used in different brands. 

Costume jewelry was also made popular by various designers to be both fashion-forward and budget-friendly. Most remembered names in costume jewelry include both the high and low priced: DiorChanelMonet.

Coco Chanel greatly popularized the use of faux jewelry in her years as a fashion designer, bringing costume jewelry to life with gold and faux pearls. Kenneth Jay Lane has since the 1960s been known for creating unique pieces for Jackie OnassisElizabeth TaylorDiana Vreeland, and Audrey Hepburn. He is probably best known for his three-strand faux pearl necklace worn by Barbara Bush to her husband's inaugural ball. [1]


Fashion Jewelry Materials

What is Brass Jewelry?

Brass, an alloy of copper and zinc, has long been a popular material for costume jewelry, fashion jewelry and other imitation jewelry for its bright gold-like appearance. The composition of brass, generally 66% copper and 34% zinc, makes it a favorable substitute for copper-based jewelry as it exhibits greater corrosion resistance. 

What is Stainless Steel Jewelry?

Stainless steel, especially 316L surgical steel is a variety of stainless steel that's used in not only biomedical applications but also becomes an excellent and popular material in jewelry due to its low risk for allergic reaction, as well as its ability to tolerate water. 

What is Tungsten Carbide Jewelry?

Tungsten Carbide, the most durable and strongest material for jewelry, approximately 10 times harder than 18K gold and 4 times harder than titanium, only a diamond is harder. Tungsten definitely is becoming popular material on the market is neither of these and happens to be far more affordable than gold or platinum, especially in men's jewelry.

Tungsten Carbide is a chemical compound (specifically, a carbide) containing equal parts of tungsten and carbon atoms.  

What is gold plated? How to tell jewelry gold plating quality is good?

Gold plating is quite common in the costume jewelry world where a layer of gold is bonded onto a metal typically with gold (yellow) and rhodium (white). This process was invented by an Italian in 1805. Compare the price, for example, 14K gold plated necklace cost ~$50 dollars while the 14K solid gold costs over $500. 

Many companies in the market plating their jewelry with a coating of 0.1 microns or less. Stay away from cheap thin layer plating because it wears off quite quickly. 

Kora Garro uses gold PVD coating (a vacuum coating process) which applies a thicker gold layer on our jewelry pieces so that’s wear and corrosion resistant, chemical resistant, has a low coefficient of friction and is low maintenance. 

Demi Fine Jewelry - Premium quality with purse-friendly

What is Demi-fine-jewelry? 

The jewelry industry starts to evolving for years of Demi fine jewelry as the sweet alternative between luxury fine jewelry and fashion jewelry. Demi fine jewelry is the best solution for when you wonder if a $1,200 luxury brand piece really worthy but also want to treat yourself with something nice without a cheaper gold wash piece to make your skin green.

The secret is in the balance of metals used to make demi-fine jewelry pieces. Materials for Demi fine jewelry: 

Sterling Silver 

925 Sterling Silver is an alloy made of 92.5% pure silver and 7.5% copper. We plate our silver jewelry in rhodium, which gives it extra shine and durability. Rhodium is one of the costliest precious metals due to its rarity. All of our sterling silver pieces are stamped with “925”. 

Gold Vermeil (Pronounced “Ver-MAY”)

Not to be confused with regular gold plating, gold vermeil involves a much thicker layer of gold to give it that much more durability. Generally, at least 2.5 microns thick gold layer in the United States and 1.0-micron gold plating thickness layer of gold in Canada considered as gold vermeil. 

We use 14k or 18k gold with 3 microns thick gold layer over sterling silver and stamped with “925” in all our gold vermeil necklaces, earrings, rings and bracelets.

jewelry material guide koragarro

Fine Jewelry Materials

Silver, gold, platinum and rhodium are known as noble metals. Sterling silver is more and more used in Demi Fine Jewelry, The other major metals gold and platinum for their resistance to corrosion and oxidation, are commonly used in Fine jewelry with precious stones due to their malleability and natural beauty. Of course, Fine Jewelry Pieces are not good for everyday purchase.

colors of gold koragarro


You may not know about Gold

Pure 100% (in practice, 99.9% or better) gold is 24 karat by definition, so all colored golds are less pure than this, commonly 18K (75%), 14K (58.5%), 10K (41.6%), or 9K (37.5%).

With the purity of gold and combine with different metals, the colors of gold are different as well.

karat of gold guide koragarro

Tips to know before you start shop jewelry

Decide on the occasion

Knowing the time on which you will want to wear a particular necklace, earrings or ring is a must. Are we looking for a piece to wear every day, or during a particular event? Then choose if you want your jewelry to be at the center of the outfit, or if you prefer something effortless to align with all kinds of outfits.

Each jewelry piece has a meaningful message. It is important to choose the right moment to wear it, particularly formal moments or in the workplace. Of course: the more precious a piece is, the more you have to be careful to use it to avoid ruining or losing it.

Cost vs. Value

Before aiming for a particular piece of jewelry, set how much you want to spend. Obviously, before entering a shop, decide how much you intend to spend: this will be useful for your jeweler to offer you exactly what falls within your budget! Or, if you prefer online shopping, you can take a trip to Kora Garro.

Check our tips to get the best coupon for smart jewelry shopping online.

Find the best color tone that fits you

Deciding which metal the jewelry we intend to buy should be made is an important step! First of all, though, we need to think about which metal looks best on us. We may like silver very much, for example, but on a more olive skin tone, gold stands out much more. It is therefore important to determine which color suits us best, also by asking our trusted jeweler for a suggestion.


Hypoallergenic means “below normal” or “slightly” allergenic. The term was coined by the cosmetics industry in the 1950’s, and became a popular marketing term for jewelry soon afterward.

Most jewelry allergy is caused by the metal nickel (see nickel allergy) which is used in the manufacture of precious metal alloys. In less expensive jewelry, nickel is often used in the base metal which is then plated with gold or silver. Many people who believe that they are allergic to gold or silver jewelry are allergic to nickel, which can occur as a trace element in gold or silver or has been used in the manufacture of gold jewelry to whiten and strengthen the piece.

And Yes, Kora Garro Jewelry is hypoallergenic.

🙂 🙃 😉 😊 🙂 🙃 😉 😊 🙂 🙃 😉 😊

This is our complete guide for jewelry materials.

We hope it is useful for you to choose the perfect jewelry piece and satisfy both fashion style and your wallet. We will meet again here, very soon!



1. Costume jewelry:

2. Jewelry :

3. Precious metal:

4. Colored gold:


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