Difference Between 14k, 18k, 22k And 24k Gold Jewellery May 10, 2016 – Posted in: Blog, How To, Wedding Inspirations
Given its popularity and importance, we as customers should be aware of this precious metal and its different types and forms that are available. If you are new to buying gold jewellery or want to know more about this metal, then read on.
KARAT: WHAT IT MEANS, AND THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN 14K, 18K, 22K, AND 24K
One of the most common queries that buyers have is: what is the difference between 14K and 18K gold, or the difference between 22K and 24K gold?
K stands for Karat, which is a measure of gold’s purity. Which means, the higher the karat, the more the purity of the metal. Here are the exact measurements:
|24 karat||100% gold (in practicality 99.95%)|
|22 karat||91.6 % gold|
|18 karat||75.0 % gold|
|14 karat||58.3 % gold|
|12 karat||50.0 % gold|
|10 karat||41.7 % gold|
So 24K gold is pure gold. However, this type of gold is very soft. It cannot be directly used for jewellery making. Hence, it is not recommended by most jewellers. However, it is often used to make gold bars and coins.
To make it strong and durable, it is mixed with metal alloys like copper, silver, nickel, palladium or zinc. Thus, 22K gold jewellery will have 8.3% of alloys mixed with gold; 18K will have 25% and so on. The alloys make the gold harder and lets the jewellery item maintain its shape and appearance even after long hours of wearing them. 18K and 14K gold will be more resistant to scratches and less prone to damage
22K gold jewellery is great for plain gold jewellery designs. But when it comes to studding the metal with gemstones or diamonds, the gold needs to be even stronger to hold these precious stones.
Hence, 18K, 14K or lower karat gold is used in making diamond jewelleries.
YELLOW, WHITE AND ROSE GOLD
If you’re new to buying gold rings or jewellery, you may be confused about the terms yellow, white or rose gold.
Is yellow gold real gold? Yes, yellow gold is nothing but pure gold. As it may be too soft to make durable jewellery, it is mixed with metal alloys to make it more tough and strong. Hence, it ends up in a slightly different colour.
22K gold will be bright, saturated gold in colour, 18K will be slightly pale gold in colour and 14K will be pink or light red.
Here is a synopsis of the colour and the composition:
What is the difference between white gold and platinum?
White gold is often confused with platinum. However, white gold is an alloy of gold mixed with at least one white metal like nickel, manganese or palladium which gives its distinct colour and feel. Whereas platinum is a naturally occurring metal. Platinum is purer, heavier, denser and stronger as compared to white gold.
Gold jewellery usually has one of the three colours (white, yellow or rose gold). However, there may be certain designs that stand out. The Trinity ring is one such special type of ring, which features interlocking bands of white, yellow, and rose gold. There are also combinations of white and yellow gold which are very popular.
GOLD JEWELLERY PRICES
Everyone wants to know, what is the price difference between white gold and yellow gold? There are several factors which will affect the price of a gold jewellery item. We have listed down some of the parameters below:
Purity: The higher the purity, the more will be the price. 24K will be the most expensive, followed by 22K and so on. However, certain metals like rhodium are rare and costly. Hence white gold designs may be more expensive than their yellow counterparts. Yellow and rose gold will be sold for approximately the same price.
Design: If you are opting for designer jewellery, you will have to shell out more. One of kind pieces is often more expensive.
HOW TO CHECK FOR REAL GOLD JEWELLERY
Markings like ’14K’ or ’18K’ should be found on the jewellery to indicate the karat. You may also find manufacturers registered trademark on the item or even its country of origin. In India, we also have the ‘BIS Hallmark’ to certify the purity of the gold and ensure that the gold content in the jewellery is as per the international standards of purity.
For combination jewellery, there may be one or more hallmarks. White gold may be used to hold a diamond in a ring or a pair of earrings. In such items, the hallmark will only indicate the gold purity. If silver is combined with gold, both the sections will be stamped separately and will indicate the purity of both separately in the hallmark.
Image Reference: Live mint
If you want a pure and plain gold design, and are ready to bear the cost go for 22K jewellery. Otherwise, try the lesser karat variants. If you don’t want to purchase platinum designs, try the white gold ones which will be slightly less expensive than platinum, but will offer a similar look and colour.
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