How to Recognize Platinum Rings

by Kimberlee Ferrell ; Updated September 28, 2017

A platinum and diamond engagement ring set on a marble table.

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Platinum rings are elegant, hypoallergenic, and durable, yet not easy to identify at first glance. Platinum's white pallor makes it look similar to sterling silver, white gold, and palladium. Protect your jewelry investment by identifying the platinum ring before buying one.

Look at the particular hue of the ring. Platinum is nearly pure white, with a slightly blue sheen. A white gold substitute may appear white at first glance but will have a yellow tint.

Pick up the platinum ring. Platinum is a heavy metal, and a platinum ring will weigh considerably more than its gold counterparts. Platinum has a density that is about 60% greater than gold, and will therefore weigh about 60% more than a comparable gold ring.

Inspect the inside of the ring band with a magnifying glass to find the jewelry hallmark. This is a simple engraving that will tell you what metal the ring is made of. A platinum ring will have a number designating how many platinum parts per thousand the ring is made of, followed by "Plat" or "PT." The highest quality platinum is marked at 950, which means it is 95 percent platinum, while lower quality platinum alloys are marked 850 or 750.

Place a drop of iodine on the platinum with an eyedropper and allow it to dry. The iodine will appear clear on a true platinum ring but will appear brown on white gold and black on palladium. You can wipe off the iodine with a cloth and some water.

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