We’ve all heard the popular mantra of splurge versus steal, but how do you know when to go for broke and when to reel it in? Well never fear savvy piercees, because by the time we’re done with you, you’ll be a certified jewelry jedi. Let’s start with nose rings.
You might think you’re seeing triple here, but nothing could be further from the truth. Although these 1.5 millimeter genuine diamond nose rings may look the same, they’re made of three very different materials that come with three very different price points. Our first item on the left clocks in at $99.99. This is a solid 950 Platinum nose ring. The perks of platinum are its extreme durability, extra pale color, and hypo-allergenic status. For a piece that will truly stand the test of time, nothing beats solid platinum, especially for a nose ring. In the middle (or the mid tier, respectively), we have an 18kt white gold nose ring with the same size and clarity diamond for the price of $41.99. Although 18kt gold is less durable than platinum and not quite as light in color, this item is still hypo-allergenic and has an amazing shiny finish that won’t tarnish. Then finally, we have the lowest priced item, a 14kt white gold diamond nose ring for just $29.99. The main difference between this item and the 18kt gold piece is simple mathematics. 18kt gold has about 75% real gold combined with other metals, and 14kt gold has about 59%. Because gold is a soft metal, the 14kt gold item will be slightly more durable than the 18kt, but both will retain their shine through proper care and maintain good longevity.
Other popular jewelry mediums include .925 sterling silver, tungsten, rhodium, titanium, hematite, and surgical grade stainless steel, and each will show a reflection in price based on their relative qualities. As we’ve seen with the nose rings, materials are definitely something to think about when deciding whether to splurge or scrimp. Another important factor is style. Just look at these turquoise cocktail rings.
The rings on the left are a very high fashion style: opulent. Gold, laquer, antiqued finishes, intricate metalwork, and accent gems are all common to this style aesthetic, and the pricing of the items will reflect accordingly. Both of these rings are worth over $100, but oh so worth it for their amazing beauty and quality (each is solid .925 sterling silver with coating of either gold or rhodium and real cubic zirconia accents.) Next, in the middle tier, we have minimalist styles. These items will generally still be high quality, but with less expensive materials and less decorative accents, and will fall into a fairly average price range. And last, we have the steals, which will usually mimic the aesthetic of higher priced items, but be made from garden variety materials, i.e. use inlay to fake the look of intricacies in the metalwork or crystal instead of facetted cz. The look of this type of jewelry is very popular and the faux detailings are almost impossible to spot, making these rings a definite steal at around only ten dollars.
So now you know when to splurge, and how to find a super steal. It’s time to go out into the world and go shopping! Just remember to use your jedi powers wisely.