Rose Gold: 18K Or 14K

Most people are relatively knowledgeable about the different variations of gold, which are white gold, yellow gold, and rose gold. However, most do not entirely comprehend the difference in composition of each color gold.

Rose gold may be the best color gold for you, but now you have to consider whether 18K or 14K rose gold is the better option for rose gold engagement rings.

Of course, the price difference is a significant factor to consider. In addition, the setting style, stone shape, and difference between precious metals should also be taken into account.

Engagement rings, in particular, are such personal and treasured jewelry items. Therefore, choosing the perfect engagement ring requires extensive consideration and research.

This article will go into depth about rose gold to help inform you about which rose gold jewelry is ideal for your diamond engagement ring or any other rose gold jewelry you wish to purchase.

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The Composition Of 14K vs. 18K Rose Gold

In order to fully understand the primary difference between 14K and 18K rose gold, we need to contemplate how rose gold is made.

Rose gold is a combination of pure gold and the stronger metals silver and copper. The ratio between pure gold and these other metals ultimately determines the karat weight of rose gold jewelry.

We know that pure gold contains 24 karats, so it stands to reason that 18K rose gold consists of 18 karats pure gold, with the remaining constituents being a mixture of copper and silver. This principle is the same for 18K white gold and 18K yellow gold.

The remaining six karats primarily consist of copper metal alloy and smaller amounts of silver metal alloy.

In contrast, 14K rose gold is created with 14 karat pure gold and the other ten karats originating from silver metal alloys and copper alloy.

The four karats that differentiate 14K rose gold from 18K rose gold doesn’t solely impact the composition, it also affects the color, durability, and costs significantly.

The Price Differences Between 18K And 14K Rose Gold

Because gold jewelry is so expensive, the higher the karat amount of pure gold in rose gold jewelry, the higher the price will be. Consequently, 18K rose gold will be more costly than 14K rose gold as it contains more gold.

Beyond the pure gold content, there are various other factors that affect the price of rose gold jewelry. For example, if there are any diamonds or precious gemstones, the price will automatically rise. This is why fine jewelry and diamond engagement rings are frequently very costly.

With all these factors being equal, 18K rose gold jewelry contains a higher pure gold content and will therefore always be more expensive than its 14K gold counterpart.

If affordability is something you deem important when searching for a gold ring, you have already made the right choice by going with a rose gold ring. Rose gold jewelry, in general, is less expensive than other metals commonly used to create an engagement ring.

Other metals that are popular in the jewelry industry include white gold, yellow gold, and platinum. Yellow gold is an alloy just like white gold and rose gold to prevent it from being too soft for jewelry.

So if you don’t want to break the bank, 14K rose gold is undoubtedly the best option.

14K rose gold petite infinity rings pendant by Blue Nile

The Color Difference Between 14K Rose Gold And 18K Rose Gold

Due to the varying levels of metals like yellow gold, silver, copper, and even zinc in some cases, the pinkish tone of 14K and 18K rose gold differs.

18K rose gold typically exists as an alloy metal consisting of 75% pure gold, silver, and a 25% copper component. Conversely, 14K gold contains around 42% silver and copper content, with 58% pure gold.

The greater amount of copper in 14K rose gold gives the metal a brighter pink color. The pink color in 18K rose gold is much lighter because of smaller amounts of copper content. When 14K and 18K rose gold are placed next to each other, 18K rose gold has a more yellow to red-gold appearance due to the greater amount of the higher gold content.

The changes in gold colors due to the composition of rose gold is a very interesting thing to witness. This characteristic plays a crucial role in choosing between 14K and 18K rose gold rings and other jewelry.

The color will remain relatively constant with yellow gold and white gold regardless of whether it is 14K or 18K gold, whereas the karat content makes a big difference in rose gold.

Rose gold typically ranges from a red-gold color to a lighter pink gold hue depending on the amount of copper and silver present.

If you prefer the color resulting from 14K or 18K, rose gold is a matter of personal preference. A red-gold color is advantageous if you seek a more vintage style, which means that 14K rose gold is the better option.

Alternatively, if you are attracted to a lighter pink gold color in jewelry, 18K rose gold would meet your requirements.

Both of these metals are compatible with a variety of skin tones and work well with other metals as well. You may also find a combination of 14K rose gold and 18K rose gold pieces unique and beautiful, but if your want to maintain consistent color in your jewelry collection, you should decide on a preference.

14K rose gold petite hoop earrings by Blue Nile

What About Rose Gold Tarnish?

If you are concerned about 14K or 18K rose gold tarnish, you can set your mind at ease. Rose gold is a metal that will never tarnish regardless of whether it is 14K or 18K.

A slight sheen may start to form on both 18K and 14K rose gold, which interferes with the original color of the jewelry. As both variations of gold contain copper, it will be subjected to oxidization.

This is not necessarily a bad thing. The patina that a rose gold ring, for example, often displays simply gives it a more vintage or antique essence.

Although pure rose gold does not tarnish, Rose gold plated jewelry certainly will. Rose gold plated jewelry contains a thin layer of rose gold covering an underlying metal, such as sterling silver. The rose gold plating will inevitably wear over time, and the underlying sterling silver will be subjected to tarnish resulting from moisture and air exposure.

Although this is undesirable, it is easily corrected by simply having the jewelry re-plated. If you are shopping for a rose gold engagement ring, a rose gold-plated ring is not a sustainable option. Instead, opt for pure rose gold for something with the longevity of a wedding band or engagement ring.

14K and 18K Rose Gold And Durability

Because gold is such a malleable and soft metal, it is always combined with other metals to increase durability. This is the primary purpose of including an alloy in the jewelry.

If pure gold were to be used in its 24 karat form, the jewelry would be too soft to withstand the elements. Jewelry would undoubtedly scratch and bend with time.

In contrast, copper is an extremely hard and durable metal, and its inclusion in rose gold makes gold durable enough to be a sustainable jewelry option. The more copper is included, the more durable the metal will be. Silver additionally contributes to the hardness of rose gold.

Because alloy metals make rose gold more durable, 14K rose gold is more resistant than 18K rose gold.

For something like wedding rings, durability is an absolute necessity. Nobody wants to damage their ring due to everyday wear and an active lifestyle. If you are concerned about the damage your ring may be exposed to, you will be better off with a 14K rose gold ring.

Alternatively, if you habitually remove your ring when you exercise to do cleaning, and 18K rose gold ring would be suitable. To maintain the brilliant glow of rose gold rings, you should learn more about cleaning rose gold.

Durability isn’t of great significance for other jewelry, such as earrings and necklaces, because the rose gold won’t be exposed to so many elements that might damage them in the long run.

Although 14K rose gold is the more durable option, it still requires the same amount of care and cleaning as any other gold alloy.

Is 18K or 14k rose gold Better For Engagement Rings?

After exploring color, expenses, maintenance, and durability, you may already know if 18K or 14K rose gold is the better option for your engagement ring. Your decision depends mainly on your personal preference regarding your lifestyle, budget, and color.

That said, the majority of wedding rings and engagement rings are created with 14K rose gold as it is the more durable option. The deeper pink gold color or a 14K rose gold ring also makes it a popular option.

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Alternatives To Rose Gold: Platinum Jewelry vs. White Gold Jewelry

What Is Platinum?

Platinum beveled edge matte wedding ring by Blue Nile

Platinum is a white metal typically used in a nearly pure form of 95% to 98% purity for platinum jewelry. Platinum resembles the appearance of white gold very closely and maintains its authentic beauty for many years if properly cared for.

Using platinum as a setting for an engagement ring will set you back approximately $300 if it is a simple solitaire design, whereas a more vintage and intricate setting could cost up to $3000. Many factors affect the price, including the style of the ring, the amount of platinum content in the ring, and the reputability of the vendor.

What Is White Gold?

White gold is an alloy consisting of durable metals like nickel, copper, and zinc, in conjunction with pure gold. The alloy metals used are what give white gold jewelry its white appearance. Both 18K and 14K gold are used to make white gold rings.

18K white gold contains 75% gold, whereas 14K white gold consists of 58.3% white gold.

14K white gold s-link tennis bracelet by Blue Nile

White Gold vs. Platinum: Which Is Better?

The price and composition are the two primary differences between white gold and platinum. Platinum is a purer metal with a high platinum composition, whereas white gold has a higher amount of more durable metals like copper, nickel, and zinc.

A greater amount of platinum is required to create a ring, which increases its price by around 45%. Although there are distinct differences between platinum and white gold regarding their price and composition, these two metals are nearly identical in appearance.

White Gold vs. Platinum Prices

The chief distinction between white gold and platinum is the higher price of platinum. Per gram, these two metals have approximately the same values, but because more platinum is used to make a ring, it is the more expensive metal.

If the price is a high priority for you, a rose gold ring is always the wisest option. However, if you’re dead-set on having a ring with white color, a white gold ring is the way to go.

White Gold vs. Platinum Composition

14 Karat and 28 Karat gold is a mixture of pure gold and harder metals like copper, nickel, zinc, or a rhodium plating that results in other forms of gold such as yellow gold, white gold, and rose gold.

In contrast, platinum is used in jewelry in a highly pure form of between 95% and 98% pure platinum. The remaining constituents are silver and rhodium. Platinum is the densest and strongest of all the precious metals, including gold.

Is Platinum Better Than Gold?

Although platinum jewelry is purer than gold jewelry, that does not necessarily mean that it is better. Platinum looks identical to white gold but has a significantly higher price.

Regarding durability, both 18K and 14K white gold are strong enough to withstand daily wear. On the other hand, platinum isn’t as scratch-resistant as white or yellow gold and requires more care.

Conclusively, white gold makes for stunning fine jewelry and engagements rings and costs less than platinum.


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