How to Clean Vermeil Jewelry


Vermeil Gold Jewelry Cleaning Set Up

First things first, it’s best to understand what you’re cleaning before you dive in. When it comes to gold jewelry it can come in a few different forms and the terms may not all be familiar. So, let’s do a quick break down to help explain.

*Solid gold jewelry means that the pieces contain at least 41.6% gold. The higher the karat, the softer the gold.
*Gold-filled jewelry is a layer of gold wrapped over a brass base metal where the gold must be 5% of the total weight.
*Gold plated jewelry contains a thin layer of gold over another metal, typically brass, with no thickness requirements.
*Vermeil Jewelry, on the other hand has very strict standards to meet in order to be classified as vermeil.  The base metal must be sterling silver and the thick gold bonded layer must be at least 2.5 microns.

(If you’d like a deeper dive into the different types of gold check out our article here.)

In other words, gold vermeil is two precious metals, giving you the best of both. It looks the same as solid gold jewelry due to its thick gold coating but it’s less expensive and with proper care can last just as long. Can someone say win-win?

Let’s Get Shining

For Routine Care

The best method to clean your vermeil jewelry is simply by gently rubbing and polishing with a soft cotton or microfiber cloth. (i.e., your sunglass cloth).   We recommend avoiding jewelry cloths unless they specifically say “un-treated” otherwise they often contain polishing agents and chemicals meant for silver, not gold.

Please take special care when cleaning chains and gemstones.  Our fingers possess greater strength than we realize when applying pressure on small areas.

Think gentle repetition, not force.You’d be surprised by how quickly your jewelry will shine right up simply by removing daily grime. 

Need a Deeper Clean?

Use good old soap and water.  You’ll want to use lukewarm, not hot, and basic liquid soap (dish soap like dawn is a great option).  Despite what you might read elsewhere, it’s best to avoid completely submerging your jewelry into water. 

Instead, wet a soft, lint-free cloth into a bowl or sink of warm soapy water and gently clean your jewelry. Don’t use a brush as this can be too abrasive to the gold plating.  

After you’re done cleaning, rinse it by using another cloth dipped in water only.  Carefully pat it dry afterwards.

How to get the most out of your vermeil jewelry

Like most things in life, the better you care for something, the longer it lasts, and the same goes for your vermeil jewelry. 

Best Practices 

This one is easy, and one of the most common mistakes.  Try to not apply body lotion, perfume, hairspray, etc while wearing your jewelry.  The chemicals can interact with the metals and they do not get along well.  Simple fix; just finish off your getting ready routine by adding your jewelry at the end.  Added bonus, you’ll also avoid snagging any delicate fabrics that way too.

Chemicals in general are a no-no, so that includes cleaning products. I mean,,, they’re not good for your skin or manicures either so just one more reason to wear gloves for your house work.

You know where else there’s chemicals?  Swimming pools and hottubs.  Sorry babe, but it’ll better to swim sans your vermeil jewelry. Same goes for those salty ocean waves.  You can put it back on later to highlight your sun-kissed skin.

Try your best to make it a habit of slipping off your rings when washing your hands, we know this is a tough one and no judgement if you don’t, but it does help longevity.

Lastly, you should always store your jewelry in its box or airtight baggie.  This helps two things, keeps the air out and dryness in, and keeps them safe from hitting other jewelry or objects and getting scratched or tangled.  Easy. Peasy.

For do's and don't on other metals check out our care guide here.

What if you’re a rebel and live in your vermeil jewelry at all times?

The beauty of vermeil is that it has a sterling silver base.  If you do choose to live on the wild side with your jewelry, your likely worst-case scenario is going to be eventually wearing away that gold layer and having silver left underneath. Or a whiter gold appearance if silver shines through in a few high impact areas. If this happens and it bothers you on a beloved piece, it can be re-plated by a professional jeweler, so not to worry.

Ready to shop? 

Take a look at our clean and modern high quality gold vermeil jewelry here.  And follow on the gram @lausannejewelry.



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What a few of our Mom friends want for Mother's Day and stories of how they're doing Mothering during a pandemic.

What a few of our Mom friends want for Mother's Day and stories of how they're doing Mothering during a pandemic.

We asked several of our “mom-friends” this year what was on their wish list’s for Mother’s Day.  And also, what it’s been like mothering lately with the extra time at home with their children.

Mom.  The original essential Worker.

Here’s what these amazing women had to share with us.  We hope it helps to lift you up, let you know you’re not alone in the struggles and the joy, and remind you that you probably this year more than ever, you or your Mom deserves something extra nice.  (We’re here to help with that!)

Mother with a baby, toddler, and small boy

 Lausanne:  What’s been the most precious about the extra time at home right now?

 Momma Melanie: Seeing how much the kids all love each other, and love playing and snuggling each other.

Lausanne:  And the hardest?

Momma Melanie: Figuring out what to make for breakfast/lunch/dinner every single day that everyone wants to eat.                                                                    

On Melanie’s wish list is the Sprinkle Necklace in 14k Gold Vermeil.  Light, simple, and chic, we like to think of it as a little sprinkle of shine for your neckline.  Available in sterling silver too, it makes an excellent gift for you or for Mom.

14k Gold Vermeil Sprinkle Necklace on model

Mother with twin  sons
Lausanne:   Any new activities or advice?

Mommma Rachael: Sometimes blasting your favorite song and triggering an impromptu dance party is just the right kind of medicine.

 Lausanne:  What’s been the hardest?

 Momma Rachael:  Never really having a moment to myself.  I lock myself in the bathroom for a few minutes of solitude and pray the house won’t be on fire when I come out. 

On Rachael’s wish list is the Eye Drop Necklace“I love this piece since it’s bold yet delicate, it encompasses femininity and strength.”


Mother with son

Lausanne:  What’s been one of the nicest new things about this time together?
Momma Tasha: Spending mornings together before starting work. I’m usually out of the door before he wakes up, so it’s nice to just relax with him in the morning now.

 What’s on Tasha’s list for Mother’s Day? The Lock Link Ring in 14k Gold Vermeil.  It represents balance and strength, just what we all need right now. Especially Mom.

Lock Link Ring

Lausanne:  What’s bringing you joy right now?
Momma Alyssa: I love watching the girls play together. I’m happy they have one another.


The unique Double Cuff Earrings on Alyssa’s Mother’s Day list.  In 14k Gold Vermeil, these special modern little earrings if the illusion of a wraparound cuff with the security of a normal post back.

Lausanne:  What’s been the one of the most unexpected new things since mothering in the pandemic and more time at home?
Momma Amanda:   My 3 yr old son has perfected sounding just like me. I would always tell him don’t get upset and be happy.  Since we’ve been homebound, they are getting into so much more trouble. When I get frustrated, he comes up to me and puts is two little chubby hands on my cheeks and says don’t be angry Mommy, be happy.  Which always makes me burst out laughing immediately.


The Lock Link necklace is what I’m hoping for.  To me it represents the unbreakable bond I have with my two sons.”

Lock Link Necklace on model

            We’re so grateful to these beautiful Mothers for sharing their stories and gifting choices with us.  For more gift ideas check out our complete Mother’s Day Gifting Guide Edit here.


To hear more stories or share yours with us (we’d love to hear!) follow along and tag @lausannejewelry on Instagram.


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What is Vermeil? And why is it so great?

What is Vermeil?  And why is it so great?

     Vermeil, (pronounced “ver-may”) is like the business class of golds, it may not be first (that would be solid gold) but it is light years better than your average plated gold and definitely where we’d rather be sitting.

     There are several interesting things to note about vermeil, (whether you see the term gold vermeil or just vermeil it’s all referring to the same thing).  Vermeil is a type of plating, it’s just the best type in our opinion.  It’s the only kind of plating that has to be regulated and measured to legally use the term.  Those requirements mandate that it has to be a minimum of 2.5 microns thick, has to be a karat weight of 10 or above, and can only be bonded to a base metal of sterling silver.

Gold Vermeil Mind's Eye Ring laying flat on white subway tile
Vermeil vs. Plated

      In contrast, anything described just as plated is hard to know for sure what you’re getting. (Kudos to the brands that do call out their base metals.)  The most commonly used plating practice is something known as “flash” plating over bronze.  While there’s nothing wrong with this method of plating, it just doesn’t last as long because it can be a very thin layer and once that bronze is exposed it’s likely not the shiny gold tone of your desired piece, or worse yet, can develop an unsightly grey film due to oxidation reactions. Not to mention cause skin reactions for some. (Yes, we're talking about the dreaded green skin reaction, which can be common for some when wearing bronze or copper.)

     With gold vermeil, in our case 14kt gold vermeil, not only does the gold last much longer because it’s heavier and thicker, but in the case that it does wear down or get scratched over time; the base metal underneath is beautiful sterling silver.  Worst case scenario?  After a lot of wear and tear or not following best practices we outline in our materials and care section here, you could get an appearance of lighter gold or white gold, but never something that tarnishes or is a darker bronzy hue.   In our book that’s a win!  Beautiful, modern jewelry that lasts and keeps up with you without the fine jewelry price tag.

Gold Vermeil Finisher Anklet laying in display case
Ok, so what’s Gold – Filled?

     We know... there’s a lot terminology out there. We’re here to help!  Gold – Filled is created by a mechanical process of pressure bonding layers of gold over bronze.  Think of a panini press grilling a sandwich.  The bread on the outside is the gold, and the fixings in-between are the bronze. With gold filled, the gold percentage is required to be 5% of the total.  Gold filled is great in that, believe it or not, 5% is much more than flash plated styles and typically is very long lasting. 

     The downside is that your base metal is bronze (although more heavily shielded) and because it has to be fabricated (and not molded & cast) there are limitations with how you can work with it.  This can mean, depending on the style, there can be cut or exposed edges where the bronze area is exposed. It’s good to be aware of also if you have sensitivities or reactions to bronze.

     As a general rule, gold filled chains are usually fine and can be a great value as links are closed and there’s no exposure of bronze core edges.  Just be careful to check how any pendants are made if you’re looking for a longer lasting style.

     Here at Shop Lausanne, we’re sticking to precious metals only, using solid sterling silver and 14k Gold Vermeil.  We believe in investing in timeless, modern jewelry styles that will not only last quality wise, but also style wise.  So, you can enjoy wearing them for years to come.

Modern Gold Vermeil Rings Laying stacked together
      We hope this helped break things down for you! If you’d like more helpful info like this, join our newsletter below for the occasional update. Questions? Let us know at hello@shoplausanne.com or hit us up on Instagram @lausannejewlery. 

Shine on!
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