At one point, shoppers could choose between silver or gold for their jewellery. However, metal choices have expanded, and silver is no longer a default metal choice for various reasons. The new powerhouse? Rose gold.
Unlike yellow gold, rose gold has a pinkish hue that gives the metal its name. Copper alloy and silver are mixed with gold to produce this effect. The specific formula calls for 75% gold, 22.25% copper, and 2.75% silver. If you decrease the copper and increase the silver content, you have pink gold. 12-karat Red gold is an equal mix of gold and copper. Red gold in 18-karat is 75% gold mixed with 25% copper. Each caster may tweak these formulas slightly to make their ideal type of rose gold. Each jeweller will have a varying type of rose gold depending on the gold caster they work with. It is very important to work with a jeweller that works with the highest quality alloys.
Although you might think of rose gold as a newer invention, it has existed for hundreds of years. In fact, King Henry VIII used a 22-karat version of rose gold known as Crown Gold, to replace existing royal coins that had a softer composition and were easily damaged. 19th-century Russians were among the first to wear the metal as jewellery, and it was dubbed “Russian Gold.”
Rose gold has been popular for wedding and fashion jewellery since then, but those periods wax and wane. One of those periods occurred after World War II began, and platinum was required for war efforts. Rose gold was again popular and has remained popular since then.
You can currently find a wide variety of jewellery made from rose gold in modern days. Pendant, brooches and even engagement rings come in rose gold. When choosing a piece made from rose gold, look for the karat weight. 18-karat and 14-karat rose gold are most common. A piece that claims to be 24k rose gold is probably a fake.
The redder the jewellery, the higher the copper content. In fact, rose gold that contains high levels of copper might look more like copper than gold. 18k rose gold should have a pink hue but not be red. If you find a piece that claims a high gold content (18k) that is deep red, it may be a fake.
A simple magnet can help to determine if your jewellery is fake. Genuine rose gold is not magnetic. However, phony rose gold can still pass the magnet test.
Vintage jewellery that shows discoloration where it touches skin (the back of a pendant or inside of a ring) is only gold plated and not fully rose gold.
Real rose gold is real gold, and the unique color might be essential to finding a piece of jewellery that’s one-of-a-kind, just like you are.