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White gold causing rash

(-----) 2006

I think I have an allergy to white gold, or one of the composites that it is made with - because I am developing consistent rashes on my ring hand.
My question is - would it be possible to have a white gold wedding band and engagement ring coated in Platinum? I have heard that platinum is hypoallergenic. If not are there any other recommendations that you might have for solving this problem?

Sharene Zemanek
consumer - Campbell River, BC, Canada


You are probably sensitive to Nickel, it is often used as a whitening alloy in white gold.

Look through the archived letters on this site and you'll find more information than you could ever use on the matter. In short though - I'm not sure about Platinum, but Rhodium is plated onto white gold all the time and is why it is such a brilliant white; a thick enough coating of Rhodium might prevent your allergy FOR A WHILE. It will rub off though eventually and you'll either have to have it redone or be left with the same problem. The same could be accomplished with clear nail-polish on the inside of the band. Keep in mind, if you choose to go this route, that your sensitivity to nickel will continue to increase - in ultimate terms, this is a temporary fix unless you get lucky.

The best way to go about it (though not cheap) would be to get the setting moved to another band - either nickel free white gold (the only type available in Europe and widely available in the USA - but make sure that it is certified as nickel free if American) or platinum or yellow gold etc. This way you remove the source rather than just cover it up.

Good luck!

Jim Gorsich
Accurate Anodizing Inc.
supporting advertiser
Compton, California, USA
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