What is the Difference Between Palladium and Platinum?

Two precious metals that are actually more scarce than gold and silver are platinum and palladium. While platinum is currently more well-known, both platinum and palladium are very similar. The differences between the two mainly come down to density and price.

What Is Palladium?

Palladium is a very rare metal and is slightly whiter in appearance than platinum and white gold. This, along with its durability makes it a great choice for wedding and engagement rings and it is now offered as a metal selection for many of the rings available from jewelers like Ben Garelick in Buffalo, NY. Even though it is more rare than platinum, it is often less expensive, typically due to demand. Many believe the price of palladium will continue to rise to meet platinum as it continues to gain popularity.

What Is Platinum?

Platinum is the second most expensive precious metal used in jewelry, next to rhodium, which is only used for plating white gold. Platinum is strong, dense, malleable and, because of its natural silvery white sheen, is ideal for fine jewelry. It’s also extremely rare - 30 times rarer than gold!

Should I Choose Platinum Or Palladium For My Engagement Ring?

Platinum is a common choice for both mens wedding bands, ladies engagement rings and wedding bands due to its shine, strength and durability when compared to gold. However, more and more couples are discovering that the properties of palladium are very similar and at a good deal less cost. Here are some reasons you might choose both platinum and palladium over white or yellow gold and a discussion of the slight differences between platinum and palladium.


Palladium wins here. It is rarer than gold or platinum, but is currently far less expensive.


Both platinum and palladium are unlikely to cause a skin reaction or irritation, unlike gold, silver and other alloys which can have an adverse reaction to your body’s chemistry.


Platinum wins as the most desirable precious metal. For whichever reason, today’s fine jewelry buyer is enamored with platinum and its properties.


Both precious metals are heavier that gold, and because of platinum’s denseness it is often recommended for men’s jewelryand may be considered more masculine than other metals. But palladium is lighter than platinum. The weight of a palladium wedding ring is comparable to 14K gold wedding rings while platinum is about 75% heavier. From a comfort standpoint, both men and women find they prefer either a heavier ring over a lighter one.


Both platinum and palladium have a natural white sheen that will never fade, unlike white gold that may have to be plated with rhodium to remain a silver color.


Both platinum and palladium are extremely durable and will last for generations. While platinum will hold up better against impacts that might dent your ring, palladium is more resistant to scratches. For example, the prongs holding the center stone of a platinum engagement ring are less likely to break than those of a gold engagement ring.


Many choose platinum because they believe that the metal helps accentuate the sparkle of their large center diamond engagement or wedding ring.

Ben Garelick Can Guide You

If you’re still not sure which metal you should choose for your engagement ring, wedding band or next piece of statement jewelry, reach out to the jewelry experts at Ben Garelick for some help. They're available via phone or online chat to answer your questions. Like family, they’ll take the time to listen to your desires and concerns and help guide you during the buying process. At the end of the day, each precious metal has its own pros and cons, and you just have to choose the one that fits your individual situation. You can count on Ben Garelick to help you through that process!

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