Dipping white gold?


Jun 9, 2011
I'm deciding on the metal for setting a pair of diamond studs and I'm really confused about white gold. Until recently, I'd never heard of white gold needing maintenance such as dipping. Is this a reflection of reduced quality? How often does it need to be done? What happens to the diamonds when the earring is dipped? Can I avoid the whole dipping issue with any sort of special care?

Two jewelers have suggested that my plan to go with platinum to avoid the white gold dipping thing might create a different issue. It seems that platinum weighs a bit more and might contribute to the earring feeling heavier in the ear. (I'm not looking at huge stones here either - probably between .44 and .55 each.) I find earrings a little uncomortable so weight is a concern for me.

Specifically, I am looking at four prong basket settings from James Allen and Whiteflash, so any experience you have with their white gold earring settings would be helpful.

Thanks bunches!


Apr 30, 2005
White gold is not actually white, it is a little yellowish.
Since many people feel that is not a desirable look so they dip it in rhodium to make it bright shiny white.
Also I think jewelry stores love the look of a case of gleaming white metal.
You don't have to get it dipped if you find the color of the white gold itself to be okay, but pre-made jewelry in white gold will probably already be dipped.

Over time the rhodium wears off so people re-dip it if they care.
The rhodium sticks to the gold but not to the diamond since it is a process where they hook an electrode to the metal and the rhodium molecules in a liquid solution are attracted to the charge on the metal.
The diamond is not conductive so does not hold the charge so does not attract the rhodium molecules.


Jan 11, 2006
The rhodium is much more likely to wear off on a ring because it has so much more wear and tear. I have not had to rhodium plate any of my earrings or pendants that are white gold. It is likely with studs that you may never need to do it. I wouldn't give it a second thought. If your earrings ever look like a pale gold is showing through, then you can decide to leave them that way or replate. It's not a big deal.


May 16, 2011
Even with extensive and heavy wear, my e-ring and wedding band have only had to be dipped twice. I never got the yellowed gold look, the shine had just dulled quite a bit and I enjoyed the shiny look as when I first got the set. With earrings I would think that it would need it much less often solely because they just sort of sit there and don't move as much, thus wearing some of the rhodium off.
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