Back during the early days of gold mining, gray specks were found in with the raw gold and thrown aside. They were considered a nuisance; Spanish conquistadors mining in South America named the specks “platina” or “little silver.” It wasn't until thousands of years later, when science had advanced, that anyone realized just how valuable this “little silver” actually is. This is, in fact, like gold, a noble metal. And it occurs less naturally than gold, which makes it more valuable. From then on, platinum was born. By the 1800s. platinum was used to make a variety of jewelry, such as platinum rings, platinum earrings, and platinum necklaces. Platinum jewelry became a favorite way to show off wealth and status by European and Russian royalty. And by the second half of the 20th century, platinum jewelry became popular in America.
In the same way that gold uses karats as a measure for a piece's gold purity, a similar system is in place for platinum. It is measured in one thousands parts total. Just as gold uses “K” to signify karats, platinum uses “PT.” PT999 tells the consumers that this piece of platinum jewelry contains 999 parts platinum to 1 part alloy. Other popular mixtures are PT950 and PT900. Even though platinum jewelry with higher purity is technically more valuable, this should not be the only consideration for the consumer. Relatively speaking, platinum is a heavier noble metal, and some wearers feel that PT999 platinum jewelry is too heavy to wear, and prefer a lighter platinum piece.
In the last few years, platinum has become a popular metal for all jewelry associated with weddings, namely platinum engagement rings, platinum wedding bands, and platinum anniversary bands. This is due to the same reason gold became a popular metal for wedding jewelry; it is because platinum's rarity and durability are symbols of the unique and everlasting bond of marriage. And while platinum is the most durable of the noble metals, platinum jewelry still needs special care to ensure its longevity. Platinum jewelry should always be taken off when performing manual tasks and each piece should be stored separately in order to prevent scratching.