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Rose Gold vs White Gold: Which One to Choose?

on Dec 17, 2023

Choosing the right type of gold for your jewelry, particularly for something as significant as an engagement ring, can be a daunting task. Each type of gold offers unique characteristics that can make it the perfect choice for you. In the debate of “rose gold vs white gold,” these two popular options each have their own charm and appeal. Let’s dive into their unique qualities and help you make an informed decision.

Key Takeaways

👉 Rose gold is an alloy of pure gold and copper which gives it a warm, pinkish hue.

👉 White gold is made with yellow gold combined with white metals and coated in rhodium for shine.

👉 Rose & white Gold offer different characteristics such as colour, durability & maintenance requirements, making them both perfect choices for engagement rings or any other kind of jewelry.

What is Rose Gold?

What is Rose Gold Made of?

Rose gold, also known as pink gold or Russian gold, is a blend of precious metals that result in a beautiful, romantic, and unique type of gold alloy. The primary components of rose gold are pure gold and copper, creating a warm, pinkish hue that gives it a distinctive and appealing color.

How is Rose Gold Made?

The creation of rose gold involves the following steps:

  1. Blending pure gold with copper in certain ratios to achieve an alluring and sturdy rose gold alloy.

  2. Fusing the metals together by melting them.

  3. Occasionally adding silver or zinc to the mixture.

This process results in the beautiful and unique color of rose gold.

The ratio of gold to copper in rose gold impacts the intensity of its color. The more copper this alloy has, the more reddish-pink tint it will have. This unique blend of metals gives rose gold its warm, pink hue and vintage charm, making it a popular choice for gold jewelry.

The Romantic Appeal

There’s something undeniably romantic about rose gold. Perhaps it’s the warm, pinkish hue that reminds us of blushing cheeks, sunset or a sweet peach. Or maybe it’s the vintage charm that takes us back to the days of Carl Fabergé and the 1920s Art Deco era in Europe and the USA.

Regardless of the cause, items made of rose gold are highly sought after. Some popular rose gold items include:

  • Wedding rings

  • Watches

  • Bracelets

  • Earrings

  • Necklaces

Whether it’s for wedding bands offering a romantic, vintage appeal, or a modern piece of jewelry with a twist, rose gold continues to capture hearts and adorn beautiful pieces of jewelry.

Current Popularity

The popularity of rose gold has soared in recent years, particularly among millennials. This can largely be attributed to the unique look that rose gold offers, which sets it apart from traditional yellow and white gold.

Social media has played a significant role in the rise of rose gold. Platforms like Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest are flooded with pictures of rose gold jewelry and accessories, catching the attention of users worldwide.

Transitioning from the romantic and warm rose gold, let’s turn our attention to another popular choice for jewelry - white gold.

What is White Gold?

What is White Gold Made of?

White gold is a modern and classy option for jewelry. It’s created by blending gold with white metals like palladium or nickel and is often coated with rhodium for a bright, shiny finish. 

How is Rose Gold Made?

To create white gold, pure yellow gold is blended with other metals such as silver, palladium, or nickel. This forms an alloy that looks silvery-white. Palladium, in particular, not only gives white gold its color but also makes it hypoallergenic and easier to work with. The gold purity in white gold varies depending on the other metals used in the alloy.

Nickel, on the other hand, acts as a primary bleaching agent for gold, improving the color of the alloy. Once the alloy is created, white gold is usually coated with rhodium, a white metal known for its brilliance and durability. This coating gives white gold its shiny finish and silvery-white appearance.

A Modern Choice

It has become a classic choice over time, especially for engagement rings.

Although it bears a resemblance to platinum, a denser and often pricier metal, white gold is lighter and frequently has a rhodium plating to enhance its whiteness. 

It has become a modern choice because when the US Government announced that they needed platinum for warfare during World War I, white gold quickly took It's place and has been staying popular ever since.

Comparing White Gold to Platinum

White gold is often compared to platinum due to its similar appearance. However, there are some differences between the two:

  • Platinum is denser and usually more expensive than white gold.

  • White gold requires more maintenance than platinum. Its rhodium coating can wear off over time and need re-dipping, whereas platinum is more durable and doesn’t require re-plating.

  • Despite this, many people still prefer white gold for its affordability and close resemblance to platinum.

Transitioning from the individual characteristics of rose gold and white gold, let’s now delve into their differences.

Differences Between Rose Gold And White Gold

While both rose gold and white gold are popular choices for jewelry, they have distinct differences in terms of:

  • Color

  • Durability

  • Scratch resistance

  • Maintenance requirements

  • Skin tone compatibility

Understanding these differences can help you make an informed decision when choosing between rose gold and white gold for your jewelry.

Color

The color of rose gold and white gold is one of their most obvious differences. Rose gold gets its unique pink color from the blend of gold with copper and, to a lesser extent, silver or zinc. The higher the copper content, the more pronounced the reddish-pink tint of rose gold.

On the other hand, white gold gets its shiny silver appearance by mixing pure yellow gold with white metals like nickel, palladium, or silver, and then adding a tough rhodium coating for extra brilliance. The combination of white metals and rhodium coating gives white gold its cool, silvery appearance.

Durability

In terms of durability, rose gold is considered more durable than white gold. This is due to the copper content in rose gold, which makes it tougher and more robust. Therefore, rose gold can handle wear and scratches better, making it an ideal choice for everyday jewelry.

White gold, while also durable, may require more maintenance due to its rhodium plating. This plating can wear off over time and need re-dipping, which may result in additional costs and care over the lifetime of the jewelry.

Scratch Resistance

Rose gold takes the lead in terms of scratch resistance. Thanks to its copper content, rose gold is tougher and less prone to getting scratched compared to pure gold or white gold, which usually has other white metals like palladium or nickel.

However, it’s worth noting that the scratch resistance of gold alloys, including rose gold and white gold, can depend on the specific alloys used and their hardness and composition. Hence, evaluating scratch resistance requires consideration of the specific gold alloy.

Maintenance Requirements

White gold requires more maintenance than rose gold. Over time, the rhodium coating on white gold can wear off, requiring re-plating. The frequency of re-plating depends on how often the jewelry is worn and its usage. The cost of re-dipping in rhodium can range from $30 to $100.

Rose gold, on the other hand, is relatively low-maintenance. It doesn’t require any special procedures; cleaning it with water, mild soap, and a soft cloth is usually enough to keep it in good condition.

Skin Tone Compatibility

Rose Gold Skin Tone Match

In terms of skin tone compatibility, both rose gold and white gold have their distinct advantages. Rose gold is great for warmer skin tones, thanks to its pink hue. It complements the yellow, peach, or golden undertones of warm skin, providing a romantic and warm vibe.

On the other hand, white gold is more versatile. It suits a wider range of skin tones, making it a good choice for those with cool or neutral complexions. Its neutral color beautifully complements blue or red/pink undertones in the skin, as well as those with pale skin.

Transitioning from the differences between rose gold and white gold, let’s focus on how these differences come into play when choosing engagement rings.

Engagement Rings: Rose Gold vs White Gold

When it comes to engagement rings, the choice between rose gold and white gold becomes even more significant. Let’s compare these two types of gold in terms of diamond color compatibility, setting styles, and overall appearance.

Diamond Color Compatibility

White gold vs rose gold comparison

The choice of gold for your engagement ring can accentuate the color of your diamond. Rose gold works well with diamonds in the I-K color range with warm red or pink hues. The warm, pink hue of rose gold complements these diamond colors beautifully, making them look even more radiant.

In contrast, white gold is the perfect backdrop for colorless diamonds in the D, E, and F range. The neutral color of white gold enhances the colorless appearance of these diamonds, making them sparkle even more. White gold can also make yellow diamonds stand out, providing a stunning contrast.

Setting Styles

Your engagement ring’s setting style can likewise sway your decision between rose gold and white gold. Rose gold engagement rings often feature vintage or classical settings, such as the Art Deco, Victorian, or Edwardian styles. These settings enhance the romantic, vintage appeal of rose gold, making it a perfect choice for those who love classic styles.

On the other hand, white gold is often used in modern engagement ring settings, such as the halo, solitaire, or three-stone settings. These settings highlight the sleek, modern look of white gold, making it a perfect choice for those who prefer contemporary styles.

Overall Appearance

Considering the overall appearance of rose gold and white gold engagement rings is another crucial factor. Rose gold engagement rings offer a warm, romantic vibe. The higher copper content not only makes them more durable but also gives them a unique pinkish hue that enhances their romantic appeal.

In contrast, white gold engagement rings:

  • Exude a sleek, contemporary look

  • Have a silvery white hue that gives them a modern and sophisticated appearance

  • Are a perfect choice for those who prefer a more contemporary style

  • Have a platinum-like appearance, adding to their modern appeal

Now that we’ve explored the characteristics of rose gold and white gold, let’s consider the factors to help you decide which one to choose.

So Which One to Choose?

The decision between white gold or rose gold requires contemplation of your personal style, lifestyle, and skin tone. If you love vintage and romantic styles, then rose gold might be the perfect choice for you. Its warmth and charm are ideal for those who appreciate a classic, timeless look. Plus, rose gold is more durable, making it suitable for those with an active lifestyle. In contrast, white gold and rose gold each have their unique appeal, so it’s essential to consider your preferences before making a decision.

On the other hand, if you prefer a modern and sophisticated look, then white gold could be your best choice. Its sleek, contemporary appearance suits those who enjoy staying up-to-date with the latest fashion trends. While white gold may require a bit more maintenance, its versatility makes it suitable for a wide range of skin tones, making it a popular choice for many.

Icecartel has a huge collection of rose and white gold jewelry for sale. We have a selection of rings, necklaces, bracelets, earrings and pendants. Shop today with Icecartel & get your jewelry delivered in just four business days!

Summary

In conclusion, both rose gold and white gold offer unique characteristics that make them popular choices for jewelry, especially engagement rings. Rose gold, with its warm, pink hue and vintage charm, is durable and scratch-resistant, making it ideal for those who appreciate a classic, romantic look. White gold, on the other hand, offers a sleek, modern appearance with a similar look to platinum, making it a stylish choice for those who prefer a contemporary style. Ultimately, the choice between rose gold and white gold comes down to personal style, lifestyle, and skin tone.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is better white gold or rose gold?

Rose gold is generally considered to be the more durable option, as it is a mixture of pure gold and copper alloy. White gold, on the other hand, is pure gold, making it less durable. Therefore, rose gold is usually the preferred choice.

What are the disadvantages of rose gold?

Rose gold engagement rings may not be suitable for metal allergy sufferers due to the presence of nickel, and can become easily scratched with daily wear. While these drawbacks are worth considering, rose gold jewellery still has a classic and elegant charm.

What is more expensive yellow gold white gold or rose gold?

Yellow, white and rose gold all have the same percentage of pure gold, making them equivalent in terms of monetary value. The choice of color generally depends on trends and personal taste, but matching the color of the gold to the color of the center stone may be beneficial.

White gold is?

White gold is an alloy of 75% gold and 25% nickel and zinc. If stamped 18 karat, it would be 75% pure gold, developed to imitate platinum - a naturally white metal.

How is rose gold made?

Rose gold is created by blending pure gold with copper in certain ratios and sometimes adding silver or zinc. This mixture creates an alloy with a beautiful, warm pink hue.

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