About Platinum

About Platinum Jewelry

It's the king of all jewelry metals!

Platinum is everywhere. You may have chatted with your soon-to-be-married friends about the virtues of platinum rings vs. gold rings. Or maybe you've heard that your favorite celebrity wears platinum rings. But platinum is nothing new!

Naturally occurring platinum and platinum-rich alloys have been around forever. The first European reference to platinum appears in 1557 in the writings of Italian humanist Julius Caesar Scaliger. The word platinum comes from the Spanish word platina, meaning "little silver."

950 Platinum Ruthenium

Did you know that there are different purities of platinum? When you're looking for a platinum ring, look for 950 platinum. All of Larson Jewelers’ 950 platinum rings are solid (not hollow), 95% pure platinum and 5% ruthenium. This particular platinum/ruthenium alloy combination -- generally referred to as PLAT or PT950 -- is the highest purity available in platinum rings.

Platinum wedding bands made with ruthenium are harder and more durable than platinum wedding bands made with iridium. In addition, all of our 950 platinum wedding bands are made in the USA.

Make sure your platinum wedding band is stamped with either PLAT or PT950, both of which indicate pure PT950 quality as required by the FTC. All of Larson Jeweler's platinum wedding rings have this stamp.

We strictly follow guidelines set by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Title 16, sec. 23.7 which states: (1) "The following abbreviations...may be used for quality marks on articles: "Plat." or "Pt." for Platinum. (2) An industry product consisting of at least 950 parts per thousand of platinum may be marked or described as "Platinum."

When you shop at Larson Jewelers, you can be completely confident that your ring is true PT950 platinum alloyed with 5% ruthenium.

Platinum Rings vs. White Gold Rings

Platinum is naturally white. White gold is not. White gold is actually pure yellow gold mixed with alloys that overpower the gold color to create an almost-white hue. Platinum is tough and durable. It typically outlasts gold by many years. It's also one of the heaviest metals, weighing almost 60% more than 14K gold. This property gives platinum jewelry the substantial feel that many people prefer. Platinum is also hypoallergenic due to it's non-reactive properties and purity. White gold is alloyed with a high percentage of nickel, a metal that about 10% of the population is allergic to.

What is Ruthenium?

Ruthenium is element number 44 on the periodic table of elements. It is also a Platinum Group Metal and is usually found with Platinum ore, but not at the same abundance. This make it more rare than Platinum. It is the 74th most abundant metal found on Earth. It, like other Platinum Group Metals, does not react with most chemicals, so it does not cause allergies. Its principle use in jewelry making is as an alloy in palladium and platinum jewelry to make jewelry pieces more durable. It is also alloyed with titanium to make titanium more resistant to corrosion. Its principle industrial use is as a coating for electrical contacts, as it makes them wear resistant.