What Is White Gold?

The diamonds in an engagement ring look fantastic in white gold! But have you ever stopped to wonder, if gold is yellow, then what is white gold and rose gold? Let's take a look at how different colours of gold end up on your finger.

We will start with the basics. Pure gold, when it is found, is considered 24kt solid gold (after all of the debris from mining is removed). That is 100% pure glowing yellow gold. But, that diamond you've been dreaming of really would be more your style in white gold, so now what?

Well, changing the colour of gold is a lot like baking a cake. Everyone has their own recipe. The basic ingredients have to be there but the rest is up to the baker, or in our case, the goldsmith. The basic ingredient for any gold ring regardless of colour is some of that pure gold. But pure 24kt gold is not great for jewellery. It's too soft and just doesn't stand up to wear and tear over the years, so gold used in jewellery is mixed with other metals to make it stronger, better to polish and more able to hold your diamonds and gemstones safely. Those other metals are what changes the colour and how much gold they put in determines the karat. In rose gold there's a little copper, in white gold there are white metals like palladium, iridium, zinc, or sometimes nickel.

White gold though, is a little like a cup of coffee, it doesn't matter how much cream you put in, it's never going to look pure white.  It has a lovely champagne colour. That's why, when you buy white gold, it has a coating of rhodium which is part of the platinum family of metals, to make it that brilliant white colour you adore.

So next time you are trying on rings, take some time to really look at the at the different colours of gold. Each one will have it's own unique colour created by the goldsmith's own personal recipe, which makes it a truly one-of-a-kind!




Photo by Jinming Pan (Unsplash)