It goes without question that gold jewelry is beautiful, timeless, and makes a statement. In fact, it’s the most common choice for wedding and engagement rings, as well as incredibly popular in other rings, earrings, necklaces, and bracelets.
Other metals apart from gold that are used in jewelry pieces include platinum, titanium, silver, and stainless steel. In this blog post, though, we’re focusing on gold and its many characteristics.
Firstly, to truly understand gold jewelry you need to understand the term ‘karat’. Karat refers to the actual gold content of the metal in a particular piece of jewelry. Gold on its own is too soft to make sturdy jewelry, so it is mixed with other metal alloys to create the metal that makes up the finished piece.
The most commonly used karat of gold is 18 karats, because its strength works well with other gemstones. Other karat values used in jewelry include 9, 14, and 22. The higher the karat, the more gold content is in the piece, therefore the more valuable it is. 9 karat gold jewelry contains 37.5% pure gold, 14 karat contains 58.5%, 18 karat contains 75%, and 22 karat contains 91.6%.
The rest of the metal used in each value of gold is a combination of alloys that help give the finished metal a unique appearance, like a specific color. Yellow gold, white gold, and rose gold are the most popular colors used in gold jewelry.
Yellow gold is made with a mixture of pure gold and alloys like copper and zinc, white gold is made with a mixture of pure gold and white metals like silver and platinum, and rose gold is made with a mixture of pure gold and copper. Each color of gold contains the same amount of gold as dictated by its karat. For example, an 18 karat yellow gold ring contains the exact same amount of gold as an 18 karat white gold ring. There can be, however, a difference in color between the different values. 18 karat yellow gold is more yellow than 9 karat yellow gold because it contains more pure gold, while 9 carat rose gold will be darker in color than 18 karat rose gold.
When deciding on the type of gold you would like for your jewelry, it’s important to determine the karat size and the color you’d prefer. Some things that may influence your decision include that particular piece’s durability over time.
Typically, 18 karat gold holds up better than 9 karat gold on a day-to-day basis, as well as looks better over time. If durability isn’t a huge issue, or if you find yourself taking incredible care of your jewelry, you may consider a lesser priced lesser karat option.
At the end of the day, if you fall in love with a piece of jewelry that’s 9 karats over one that’s 18 karats, choose the one you will enjoy the most. Its sentimental value will far outweigh its actual value as long as it’s a piece you truly love.
IMG Jewelers is one of the trusted names in jewelry in the Cleveland area. Come visit our Lyndhurst showroom and we can help you select the perfect piece of gold jewelry, or you can contact us today.