The Reality About Gold: The Inside of Scoop on Gold, Platinum, and Palladium Jewelry

Are you sitting down? We need to have to talk. There is anything you need to have to know about your White Gold Jewelry:

White gold is yellow.

Not yellow like an omelette, but it is yellow. It seems white in a jewelry shop, and it charges less than platinum, but in excess of time white gold may return to its unique colour. Your white gold jewellery could want to be whitened again and once again, a process that will make a bigger dent in your financial savings than a platinum ring would.

To understand what is actually heading on, 1st you want to learn how gold is used in jewelry. I will also describe the differences in between “nine karat,” “fourteen karat,” and “18 karat” gold, and compare gold to other equivalent metals such as Palladium, Platinum, and Silver.


Gold, naturally, is a delicate malleable metal with an intense yellow color.

Pure gold is typically considered “way too” yellow for most people’s tastes, and its softness tends to make for quite fragile jewellery in its pure sort. Pure (24k) gold jewelry is much too soft to protect a solitaire diamond, or for any piece of jewelry that will be worn often.

So, for these very very good causes jewellers will mix other metals into gold, generating alloys. The metals they decide on to blend with gold create diverse colours – making it possible for for some insane combos such as green, pink, and purple gold. Well-liked colors are rose gold, yellow gold, and white gold.

Distinct Types OF GOLD

Yellow Gold: Gold in its pure kind is yellow. Yellow gold is blended with metals this kind of as copper and zinc to reduce its value, improve toughness, and tone down its yellow colour.
White Gold: White gold is an alloy of yellow gold and at the very least a single white metal (often palladium.) Practically all white gold is plated with rhodium, which I will make clear in a bit. There is no such point as pure white gold, considering that it would be yellow.
Rose Gold: There is no this kind of thing as pure rose gold possibly, since rose gold is an alloy of gold and copper. Rose gold, red gold, and pink gold are all produced from various combos of gold, copper, and (at times) modest quantities of silver. The varying share of copper used determines the color of the gold.


There are diverse mixes with different purities of gold utilised. The term “karat” is utilized to denote the proportion of gold in an alloy. “Karat” is pronounced like “Carat” (which refers to the excess weight of a diamond) but its indicating is diverse. Karat is often abbreviated as “kt” or “k.” Pure gold is 24 karats so one karat of gold is one/24 gold, or 4.sixteen% pure.

9k Gold: 37.five% pure. Stamped 375. Contacting 9k “gold” is like calling a scorching puppy “meat.” It really is a gold-ish funk with some gold in it. 9k is not recognised as gold in many countries such as the U.S.
10k Gold: forty pure. Stamped 417. 10k is still considerably less than 50% gold, but it satisfies the lawful karat limit to be considered “actual” gold in the United States. It is unusual in good jewelry and generally regarded as to be of bad good quality.
14k Gold: fifty eight.3% pure. Stamped 583/584. 14k is the most well-liked type of gold since it wears effectively, is resistant to scratches, and is more sturdy than the larger karat values. It is exceptional for use in jewelry.
18k Gold: seventy five.% pure. Stamped 750. 18k is the bare minimum gold standard for sale in Italy. It is yellower and far more malleable than 14k, but regarded to be leading quality. It is also excellent for use in jewelry.
24k Gold: 24K gold is 100% gold and is well-known in Asia. Even so it is typically regarded to be too gentle for use in jewellery.


A lot of gold mixes nonetheless do not accomplish the sought after colour. For instance, a yellow tint is existing in all white gold. To mask white gold’s true color, jewellers coat it with a lustrous white metal referred to as Rhodium.”Rhodium Plating” seems phenomenal, and provides your jewellery a mirror-like finish. Even so, since it is just a coating it may wear down over time. When this happens, your jewellery will shed its luster. If the primary metallic is white gold, it will begin to show up a boring, pale yellow.

Individuals use their jewellery in a different way, and there is no way to correctly predict how lengthy your rhodium plating will final. On earrings and Necklaces it can very last a extremely long time, because people pieces expertise extremely little bodily get in touch with with the environment. Rings and bracelets are a distinct story. Continual put on on a ring can trigger rhodium to rub off in as small as six months. From my encounter both selling and putting on white gold jewelry, it appears that a ring will need to have to be re-plated about after each 6 months to two several years.

Your regional jeweller can rhodium plate your ring for you. The process takes a few minutes if they can do it on-website, or up to one particular 7 days if they deliver it away. Most jewellers cost about $60 for this services (at time of writing). The price of rhodium alterations, however, and the price for this service will alter above time.

The benefit is that each time your ring is rhodium plated, it receives a whole new surface and can appear practically like-new. Minor scuffs and scratches will vanish. The draw back is, of program, the expense and time necessary. Most men and women pick white gold above platinum to save cash. But when you factor in the future cost of keeping white gold, platinum is usually less expensive.

I lately read through an article titled “Rhodium Plating like Colouring Your Hair, Only For Jewellery!” The article advocates using rhodium plating to “alter up” your aged jewelry. This is a entertaining idea, but maintain in thoughts that plating white rhodium more than a yellow or rose gold ring is a good deal like bleaching brown hair blonde. It will appear wonderful at first, but then it will start to wear down and need routine maintenance. Be well prepared for a good deal of upkeep – or go by way of that uncomfortable stage in which your “roots” are showing.


Rhodium: Rhodium is amid the rarest and most useful cherished metals. Rhodium is resistant to corrosion and it does not oxidize. It is typically employed as a thin coating over White Gold, Silver, and Platinum Jewelry. Reliable rhodium is hardly ever utilised in jewellery due to the fact it really is tough to function with and pure rhodium is really costly.
Silver: Like gold, silver is very delicate in its purest type. “Sterling Silver” is ninety two.five% pure, so it is generally stamped 925. Silver is often alloyed with copper, platinum and/or zinc. For much more data about Silver Jewellery, read my weblog entry All That Glitters is Not Gold: Everything You Want to Know About Sterling Silver.
Palladium: I really like Palladium, but most jewellers do not perform with it. A huge conspiracy? No. Handmade Jewelry is just less malleable than Gold or Platinum, and needs specific gear and unique education.
The metallic itself is fairly inexpensive, so palladium (when it is offered) is an exceptional cash-preserving substitute to platinum. Palladium is light-weight, which is a plus when utilised in earrings, mens rings, and oversized jewellery. Like platinum, palladium is in a natural way white and extremely durable. Palladium in jewellery is often 95% pure, stamped 950Pd. Because of to its purity, palladium it is fantastic for men and women with allergy symptoms to steel alloys like nickel.
Platinum: Just like in the globe of audio, in jewelry platinum is king.Platinum is dense, robust, and extended-long lasting making it best for engagement rings. When utilized in jewellery, platinum is generally 90-95% pure. It is almost usually more costly than white gold.
Platinum is recognized for its weight, which indicates it isn’t really fantastic for earrings (ouch) or chunky jewellery. Even so the added weight is a wonderful touch in smaller sized items – when you maintain a platinum ring and a 14k white gold ring aspect by facet, the platinum ring feels a lot more important.
Platinum’s natural colour is a uninteresting metallic white or pale grey, so it is sometimes coated in rhodium like white gold. But not like white gold, when the rhodium wears down your platinum jewellery will nonetheless seem colourless. Just clear and buff your platinum every so-frequently to maintain its organic great seems to be.
Titanium: Titanium is a grey-white steel used in a quite pure form (ninety nine%). Titanium is affordable, durable, and lightweight it feels “feather light-weight” in comparison to platinum and gold. It is also one hundred% hypoallergenic.
I believe the most enduring cause for titanium’s popularity is that it seems amazing. If you have been a superhero, what would your ring be made of? Straightforward response.
That stated, titanium is extremely hard to work with. It can not be soldered, and speedily wears down jewellers equipment. So if your ring is damaged or your fingers change dimension, rely on possessing to get an entirely new ring. Titanium is very best reserved for quite basic jewelry this kind of as mens bands.
Tungsten: Tungsten Carbide is inexpensive, large, and incredibly durable. When I worked in a jewellery store, I used to obstacle our consumers to try to scratch our tungsten wedding bands. Some individuals invested ages scraping the rings on the flooring or metal counter. They held me entertained – but no one at any time managed to scratch one.
Tungsten arrives in dark grey, light-weight grey (referred to as “white tungsten”) and black. Like titanium, tungsten are not able to be resized and is tough to work with. For now, it really is also greatest reserved for mens bands.