Four Precious Metals Used in Jewellery (that aren’t gold or silver…)

If you asked 100 people to name a precious metal, gold and silver would be clear favourites. But there are a huge variety of precious metals, some of which are more valuable than gold, and all more valuable than silver which is relatively cheap compared to some of these elements.

4. Palladium

Palladium has a pure white finish which has seen its use for wedding rings grow in popularity over the last fifty years. Vivienne Westwood launched her own range of Palladium jewellery in 2012, as you can see modelled by Mad Men’s Christina Hendricks above.

Typical Value: 800 USD/oz.

3. Iridium

Iridium Jewellery | Precious Metals | Appreciating Assets
Iridium jewellery is very rare, this incredibly hard and brittle member of the platinum family has more commonly appeared in the nibs of fountain pens, in unmanned spacecraft and in X-ray optics. In 2009 American Elements announced they would be producing the first ever pure iridium jewellery.

Typical Value: 550 USD/oz.

2. Rhodium

Rhodium Jewellery | Precious Metals | Appreciating Assets
© Guinness World Records

Pure rhodium jewellery is very rare due to its high melting temperature, but is frequently plated with gold and platinum. At one point Rhodium was more valuable than even gold and was used by Guinness World Records to honour Paul McCartney back in 1979 for selling over 200 million albums. He was presented with a solid Rhodium disc in place of the usual platinum or gold.

Typical Value: 1100 USD/oz.

1. Platinum

Platinum ring | Precious Metals | Appreciating Assets

Platinum is the most valuable precious metal on Earth and 30 times rarer than gold. 2.74 million ounces of platinum was used in jewellery in 2013 and its durable, deep-white consistency makes it one of the rarest of status symbols. The Tiffany Victoria band ring you see above would set you back £13,000 for its platinum set diamonds.

Typical Value: 1400 USD/oz.

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