Perhaps no other substance on earth has captured the hearts and minds of man more than gold. Gold is the most easily worked of all metals and ranges in softness based on its purity. Generally pure gold is too soft for use in jewelry, so it’s commonly mixed with alloy metals such as copper and zinc. It’s important to balance gold purity with durability. Jewelry items like rings and bracelets often take more abuse and are much likely to become deformed if softer gold is used. The most often used karat qualities of gold are 10K, 14K, 18K and 24K with the number being the parts of gold in the mixture.
Platinum is especially popular for engagement and bridal rings. It is naturally white, more durable and heavier than gold; but it is also at the top of the price range for precious metals. Like gold, platinum is mixed with other metals to make jewelry. Platinum is not measured by karats as is gold. It is measured in parts. For example, 900 Platinum means that 900 parts out of 1000 are pure platinum or 90%.
White gold is made by mixing in nickel alloy and rhodium plating it. If not re-plated, white gold can lose its silvery appearance. White gold is one of the most popular metal selections for engagement rings due to the affordable cost and luxurious appearance.
Rose gold is created by mixing yellow gold with silver and copper. Rose gold is one of the most popular metals at the time. The “rose” hue to the metal makes it very popular for engagement rings and jewelry alike.