Jewelry Trends

What Does 585 Mean on Jewelry?

Rachel Akmakjian

Author

Rachel Akmakjian

If you’ve ever looked closely at a favorite piece of gold jewelry, you may have noticed a 585 gold stamp somewhere on the piece. Typically, jewelry pieces hide these gold markings in difficult-to-notice places, such as on the inside of rings, necklaces, or earrings.

So what do these mysterious three numbers mean? Do they even matter at all?

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What You Will Learn

What Does 585 Stamped on Jewelry Mean?

In jewelry making, manufacturers and jewelers use unique, coded markings, sometimes called hallmarks, to reveal a product’s metal purity and other essential information about a piece of jewelry.

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For example, markings like “PLAT” and “PT” tell you that a piece contains “platinum” or, if a piece is marked “S Silver,” it contains sterling silver. Sometimes, marks can also reveal the total karat weight of a piece’s diamonds or other gemstones.

But what does 585 mean on gold jewelry?

If you see a 585 stamp hidden somewhere on your piece, this reveals information regarding the piece’s overall gold purity. The 585 stamp is more common in North America and Europe, but regardless of where you purchased the piece, the 585 stamp stands for the percentage of pure gold used in the piece: 58.5%. The piece is a gold alloy, which is gold mixed with other metals — such as those used to make white gold or rose gold — but the stamp indicates that at least 58.5% of the alloy mixture is typical, traditional, pure yellow gold.

What Does 585 on Gold Mean When Shopping?

So why should you care? Will the 585 stamp on gold impact your shopping and wearing experiences?

It definitely can! Buying 585 gold means that you may be spending more or less than you would otherwise, and may also mean that you’ll have to take special care with cleaning and maintenance.

Fine jewelry typically consists of 14k or 585 due to its higher percentage of fine gold than other precious metals. Due to its high quality, most engagement rings and better gold products feature this ratio of fine gold alloys. As such, the price for 585 gold jewelry might be higher than what you’d get if you buy a gold alloy product containing less fine gold overall and more precious metals, such as copper, nickel, or palladium.

However, while 585 gold is more expensive than some other options, it’s also less expensive than many others. Regarding fine jewelry, 585 gold is on the more affordable end of the spectrum, balancing affordability and quality. Additionally, the higher-quality product will retain its value longer, may be more durable than other precious metal options, and will not be as likely to cause allergic reactions as some lesser-quality products.

The high level of quality means greater care will need to be taken to ensure the piece’s longevity, and you’ll want to be extra careful not to damage it during everyday wear.

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What Does 585 Mean Stamped on Jewelry When It Comes to Cleaning?

You may already have a pretty solid process for cleaning all your favorite jewelry pieces. Still, if you’re newly adding a piece of 585 gold jewelry to your collection, you may need to change your cleaning process just a tad.

  • Never use harsh chemicals on your 585 gold jewelry; only clean this jewelry with mild dish soap, warm water, and soft cloth.
  • Use a soft toothbrush to clean around any intricate designs.
  • Throughout your normal wear, be careful not to expose the jewelry to chemicals, such as cosmetics, lotions, perfume, etc.

With the proper precautions, you can keep your 585 gold jewelry pristine for a lifetime.

A Note on Gold Plating

Before you purchase any piece of 585 jewelry, it’s worth noting that some pieces feature the 585 gold mark but only account for the gold plating or gold leaf. These pieces are often cheaper, but that’s because they do not contain the same levels of fine gold in its purest form throughout the entire piece. Instead, the pieces feature a base metal of lower quality, and then that base metal is covered with a thin layer of 585 gold.

While gold plated jewelry is perfectly suitable for some, just be aware of what you’re buying so you don’t inadvertently end up with a gold plated piece when you initially shop for a piece of real 585 gold. A quick way to spot a gold plated piece is to see multiple jewelry stamps on it, such as GP, for gold plated.

585 Gold Jewelry FAQs

Where Do I Find a 585 Mark on My Jewelry?

Look for a small number in an inconspicuous spot. Bracelets, earrings, and necklaces typically hide jewelry marks on their clasps, while rings hide their marks in their interiors.

Is 585 Gold the Same as 14K Gold?

Both are the same, technically, but have a minute difference in percentage—585 is 58.5%, while 14K 58.3% pure gold.  A gold product with 585 gold technically has higher karat gold than 14K gold, but “585 gold” and “14K gold” are used interchangeably.

What’s the Best Karat Weight for Gold?

Generally, 14K and 18K gold are best for jewelry, but you can also find 22K gold jewelry. Even though 22K gold jewelry contains more pure gold, it might not be the best for jewelry. Since gold is a relatively soft metal, mixing it with other precious metals adds strength, durability, and aesthetic allure, as in the case of both rose gold and white gold.

Protect Your Gold Jewelry

No matter what your preferred gold jewelry is, no matter the karat weight or the gold alloy, ensure all your precious pieces are protected appropriately with specialized jewelry insurance.

BriteCo offers comprehensive jewelry insurance that can protect all your pieces from some of life’s most common mishaps — loss, damage, theft, natural disasters, and more. All it takes is providing a few bits of information, and then we’ll get back to you with a quick quote. You’ll be covered in mere minutes, and rest assured that your gold jewelry is protected.

Learn more and get your quote today. 

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Rachel's expertise is further enhanced by her distinction as a Graduate Gemologist from the prestigious Gemological Institute of America (GIA), equipping her with exceptional knowledge in gem identification and grading. Her education and experiences have given her an in-depth understanding of the demands and expectations facing jewelers and customers in today’s evolving retail marketplace.