Gold jewellery is a precious asset and a symbol of tradition, culture, and wealth. However, with the increasing demand for gold jewellery, the market has become flooded with fake and substandard products, making it challenging for buyers to ensure the purity and authenticity of the gold. To address this issue, the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) introduced the BIS hallmarking system for gold jewellery. In this article, we will discuss what BIS hallmarking is and how to identify hallmark gold jewellery.

What is BIS Hallmarking?

The BIS hallmarking system is a certification mark that indicates the purity of gold jewellery. It is a voluntary process in which gold jewellery manufacturers can choose to participate. However, it is mandatory for all gold jewellery sold in India from January 2021. The BIS administers the hallmarking system, a government agency that oversees the standardization, marking, and quality certification of goods sold in India.

The BIS hallmark consists of five components:

BIS Mark: The national standard mark of the BIS that indicates that the jewellery has been hallmarked according to Indian standards.

Purity Grade: The purity of the gold is expressed in terms of caratage or fineness. The caratage denotes the amount of pure gold in the jewellery, and fineness represents the proportion of pure gold in parts per thousand. For example, 22K gold has a purity of 91.6%, equivalent to 916 fineness.

Assaying and Hallmarking Centre’s Mark: This mark indicates the unique identification number of the Assaying and Hallmarking Centre where the jewellery was tested and hallmarked.

Jeweller’s Identification Mark: This mark represents the jeweller manufacturer who is responsible for the quality of the jewellery.

Year of Marking: This mark indicates the year the jewellery was hallmarked.

How to Identify Hallmark Gold Jewellery?

To identify hallmark gold jewellery, look for the BIS hallmark on the jewellery. The hallmark may be engraved on the jewellery, stamped, or laser-etched. You can find the hallmark on various parts of the jewellery, such as the back of the earring, the necklace’s clasp, or the ring band’s inner surface. The BIS hallmark should contain all the five components mentioned above.

Apart from the BIS hallmark, you can also check the weight of the jewellery and its price to determine its authenticity. The weight of the jewellery should be proportionate to its size, and the price should reflect the current market rate of gold. If the price is too low or too high, it could be a sign of fake or substandard gold jewellery.

It’s also important to note that some jewellery may have other markings or engravings, such as the karat weight or the manufacturer‘s mark. However, these markings are not a guarantee of authenticity, and they may be faked or forged.

Therefore, it’s recommended to always buy gold jewellery from a trusted and reputable jeweller, and to insist on a BIS hallmark certificate for any gold jewellery purchase. The BIS hallmark ensures that the gold jewellery meets the standards of purity and quality set by the Bureau of Indian Standards.

Where to Find the Hallmark?

The BIS hallmark can be found on various parts of the jewellery, such as the back of the earring, the clasp of the necklace, or the inner surface of the ring band. The hallmark may be engraved, stamped, or laser-etched on the jewellery.

Other Factors to Consider

In addition to the BIS hallmark, you should also consider other factors to determine the authenticity of gold jewellery. For example, the weight of the jewellery should be proportionate to its size. If the jewellery is too lightweight for its size, it could be a sign of fake or substandard gold.

You should also consider the price of the gold jewellery. The price should reflect the current market rate of gold, and if the price is too low or too high, it could be a sign of fake or substandard gold jewellery.

Buying authentic gold jewellery can be a challenging task, but by looking for the BIS hallmark and considering other factors such as weight and price, you can ensure that you’re buying high-quality and pure gold jewellery. Always buy gold jewellery from a trusted and reputable jeweller, and insist on a BIS hallmark certificate for any gold jewellery purchase.

Other Tips for Identifying Authentic Gold Jewellery

Apart from the BIS hallmark, there are other tips and tricks that you can use to identify authentic gold jewellery. Here are a few of them:

Magnet Test: Gold is not magnetic, so you can use a magnet to determine whether a piece of jewellery is made of authentic gold or not. If the jewellery is attracted to the magnet, then it is not made of authentic gold.

Acid Test: The acid test is a method of determining the purity of gold by applying nitric acid to the surface of the jewellery. If the jewellery is made of authentic gold, it will not react to the acid. However, this test can damage the jewellery, so it is not recommended unless you are a professional.

Scratch Test: You can also use a scratch test to determine the purity of gold jewellery. Simply scratch the jewellery on a touchstone and apply nitric acid to the scratch. The color of the scratch will change depending on the purity of the gold.

Density Test: The density of gold is higher than that of most other metals, so you can use a density test to determine whether a piece of jewellery is made of authentic gold. Simply weigh the jewellery and measure its volume by submerging it in water. The density of gold is 19.32 grams per cubic centimeter, so you can use this information to determine whether the jewellery is made of authentic gold.

Hallmark Verification: You can also verify the BIS hallmark on gold jewellery by using the BIS website or mobile application. Simply enter the hallmark details and the application will verify whether the hallmark is authentic or not

Conclusion

In conclusion, identifying hallmark gold jewellery is essential to ensure that you’re getting what you’re paying for. The BIS hallmark is the most reliable indicator of the purity and quality of gold jewellery, and you should always look for it when buying gold jewellery. Additionally, you can use other methods such as the magnet test, acid test, scratch test, density test, and hallmark verification to further verify the authenticity of gold jewellery. By following these tips, you can ensure that you’re buying authentic gold jewellery that will last a lifetime.