Vermeil (pronounced ver-may) is a gold plating technique that adds thicker layers of gold (at least 2.5 microns) to a strong base metal. Many cost conscious shoppers opt for gold plated or vermeil jewelry instead of pieces with higher concentrations of gold. Using a process called electroplating, gold or gold alloys can be added to a stronger base metal (like brass, copper, or sterling silver). Jewelry made with thin layers of this outer gold coating are sold as gold plated, while thicker layers (a min of 2.5 microns) are called vermeil. Vermeil jewelry is considered higher end than gold plated jewelry, is more durable.
If you are into jewelry that looks like gold (notice that I don’t say gold jewelry here), vermeil may be of interest to you.
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