Platinum is an integral part of the chemical makeup of Platinum grade silicones and acts as the catalyst in the curing process. You can’t skimp on platinum and still have silicone cure properly and be safe. And like any other rare earth metal, there is just no such thing as inexpensive platinum. I mean, if you found a gold ring that was labeled gold but just too cheap to be believed would you buy it? You get what you pay for when it comes to gold, and the same goes for platinum. If it’s too cheap to be believed, then it simply cannot be Platinum Grade silicone. It’s more likely a blend of materials labeled incorrectly as Silicone, or not any type of silicone at all.
There are less expensive catalysts that can be used in place of platinum, but these silicones are not stable and can revert back to liquid or crumble apart after a few years. Tin is one of those commonly used catalysts.
So if you’re a manufacturer trying to make silicone toys as cheaply as possible, the only way to stretch your dollar is to add fillers or not use 100% Platinum Grade. It’s important to note here that the color of platinum in some toy lines comes from pigments, not the silicone itself, so a silver colored toy labeled “platinum” is still not platinum grade unless it specifically say it is “100% Platinum Grade silicone”
When you’re needing to reduce the amount of silicone to reduce cost, industrial waxes and petroleum by-products become the cheapest way to do that. They are often odorless, but can sometimes have a slight “burnt” smell to them. So how to tell if a company is using something unsafe and labeling it Silicone? One way is that they actually tell you on the packaging that it’s not for internal use. Other ways would be to call it anything but 100% Platinum grade silicone: “Body Safe” or “Ultra-Premium” or “Platinum Premium” are all ways for getting around this.