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Solid Gold Body Jewellery

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We get many questions about buying gold body jewellery so we have produced a guide which will help you decide what type of jewellery to invest in.  Pure gold is 24ct, this is unfortunately far to soft to be used in body jewellery so it needs to be hardened by mixing it with another metal called an alloy.  Below is more info which will help you choose a balance between gold purity and hardness. 

9ct Gold

9ct is actually less than half gold.  It is 37.5% pure gold and 62.5% other alloys.  These alloys strengthen the gold and make it hard and durable. Unfortunately these other alloys (such as nickel) which release metallic irons into the blood stream via the skin and cause allergic reactions.
9ct gold does not meet the required EU standards for body implantation and is therefore NOT suitable for the initial piercing.  If you choose to wear 9ct gold in a healed piercing, there is still the risk that prolonged close exposure to the skin could trigger an allergic reaction (even if you are not normally allergic).

Gem's Body Jewellery does not recommend the use of 9ct gold for body piercing jewellery. (sterling silver should also never be used as body jewellery, other than earrings or nose studs).

14ct Gold

This is our gold of choice for body piercing jewellery.  It is 58.5% pure gold and only 41.5% alloy.  This means that you have a much lesser risk of allergic reaction, while keeping the gold strong enough to maintain threads, and avoid scratches.

14ct (also 14K or 14kt) white gold is often alloyed with silver or nickel to give it the white effect. It is also often rhodium plated to give it a nice shiny finish.

It is possible to alloy gold with palladium for a nickel free white gold.  This is more expensive due to the cost of the raw material palladium, which actually costs more than the gold itself.

18ct Gold

18ct gold is 75% pure gold and 25% alloy.  While this may seem good as it contains much less nickel, it also means that the gold is much softer.  Items such as gold belly bars and gold tongue bars will cross-thread easily, and after a while the thread will wear away so that it does not hold the ball on tightly. BCRs would stretch and not hold the ball in place.
18ct gold is best suited to body piercing jewellery such as stud earring or nose studs which no not require a thread.


Some of the items we stock do carry a 14k manufacturers stamp, however due to their size they are not legally required to be hallmarked.  If there is no appropriate place on the jewellery some items may not be marked at all, please bear this in mind when purchasing.