Looking for the best gold engagement ring for you or your fiancé? You’ve probably come across multiple options to choose from, which have probably left you feeling more confused than you felt before walking into the jewelry store. But, don’t beat yourself up for not being able to make a decision easily, for not being able to just pick one. The search for the perfect engagement ring might seem easy, but it isn’t because you will find many options that you just love. We’ve been there, and it all feels even worse when you have to choose one version of 14k gold.
14K gold is the most common version of gold used for high-end and relatively affordable jewelry. And because it is the most common and also the most popular option, jewelers from all over are competing to create the most elaborate, unique, and/or the subtlest of 14k gold jewelry. Therefore, as expected, the search for the perfect 14k gold ring might not be the easiest – which is also the reason why we are throwing in one more curveball! Bear with us for just a moment.
It may seem like choosing one of the tens of potentially elegant designs is soul-crashing, but wouldn’t the search for the perfect 14k gold engagement ring feel much easier if you had to think about the value of the gold? We all love to know that we are getting something out of a purchase, and knowing how much you’d get from 14k solid jewelry is, ultimately, the biggest motivator. So, what’s the value of 14k gold? Read on to find out.
What is 14k gold?
Gold bears the symbol Au on the periodic table, and its atomic number is 79. It is a precious metal and also a naturally occurring precious metal in elemental form. Its preciousness comes from its rarity, as well as the unique color of the gold in its pure form – these also make it the most desirable metal, especially in the jewelry world (the investment world too, because it’s one of the most reliable investment vehicles). But nothing perfect is really that perfect, right? Imperfect perfection, perhaps? Well, despite being a very desirable and highly valuable metal, gold is significantly soft, malleable, and scratch-prone in its natural form, which means that anything molded out of pure gold won’t last as long as anyone would like. This is definitely a huge issue for anyone investing in the best of gold jewelry.
So, to go around this problem and create the best of solid gold jewelry, the 24k gold (pure gold at 99.99% is alloyed with different metals, a process that leaves you with gold that is more durable, strong, and with a nice color. You may not know this, but 24k gold isn’t yellow- it actually takes on more of a bright yellow-orange hue, which isn’t desirable in the jewelry world. The admirable yellow hue of gold comes from the mix of pure gold and other metals like copper, silver, or zinc.
So, what’s 14k gold?
Well, 14k gold can be defined as the gold mixture that’s primarily composed of 58.3% pure gold, which is then blended with other durable metals like copper, zinc, and nickel. The metals blended with gold are chosen because they are high-strength metals that transfer these desirable qualities to gold, creating a more durable version of gold. Note that rhodium plating is also used in most cases, not only creating lustrous white gold but also leaving you with a more durable gold alloy.
14k gold, like 10k and 18k gold, is available in different colors, something that depends on the percentages of the metals that are blended into the pure gold. When a higher percentage of silver and/or zinc, palladium, or nickel compared to copper leaves you with 14k white gold, while more of copper and less of the white metals like silver and palladium or zinc leave you with 14k rose gold. Yellow gold is often the result of a mix of pure gold, almost as much silver, and low copper content. Remember that the 14k gold alloy is also defined as gold made of 14 parts of pure gold and 10 parts other metals.
Thanks to the alloying process, 14k gold is one of the most durable and the most desirable versions of gold, and it’s often used for engagement rings, pendants, earrings, eternity bands, and other pieces of fine jewelry. Its durability and beauty also make it a great choice for jewelry that can be worn every day.
Does it mean that 14k gold isn’t real gold? No, 14k gold is very much real gold – more solid gold, but just not pure gold. Bear in mind that despite the many contrarian beliefs, almost no gold jewelry is actually made of pure 100% 24k gold. So, don’t be lied to. 24K gold is extremely soft, and 14k gold is created out of it to give you a more durable and affordable version of valuable solid gold that makes great quality jewelry that won’t scratch, bend or warp easily.
To identify 14k gold, look out for the 14K or 14Kt hallmark stamp for authenticity. The Kor Kt is an important mark that stands for karat, which is the measure of the purity of gold. Other versions of 14k gold would be identified by an authenticity stamp that features the country of origin or the company logo. Others are stamped 14K 585 or just 585, and in other cases 14K P for 14 karats plumb gold – in this case, plumb stands for complete, and the stamp tells you that the jewelry has 14 parts of pure gold.
Now that we have the basics of 14k gold out of the way let’s look at the three main versions of 14k gold.
What is 14k white gold?
This is a unique, beautiful, and lustrous version of gold that results from the blend of 58.3% pure gold with 32% pure silver and10% palladium.
As a result, it takes on more of a whitish/ creamish hue that is the root of the name white gold.
But the blending doesn’t give you the white, lustrous finish white gold is known for. That comes from the plating of the blended gold with rhodium.
Pros and cons of 14K white gold
- Ideal metal color for pale, fair, and rosy skin tones
- It’s significantly more affordable than the other versions of white metals like platinum
- Quite durable thanks to the blending of soft gold with durable, high-strength metals. It’s also scratch-resistant, and it won’t warp
- It blends well with the brilliant white diamonds and allows the diamonds to stand out better than the stone would look against yellow gold
- The rhodium plating wears out after some time, and the 14k gold jewelry would have to be redipped in rhodium. The good news is that in between these maintenance sessions, the maintenance of the 14k white gold jewelry is quite easy and inexpensive.
- Risk of nickel allergies because nickel is sometimes used as one of the white metals needed to create the 14k white gold.
What is 14k Rose Gold?
Rose gold is the trendiest version of gold in the jewelry world today. It’s quite desirable, and a number of individuals are choosing this version of gold for their engagement rings. 14K rose gold results from the alloying of pure gold (58.3%) with copper (32%) and silver/zinc.
Rose gold gets its name from the resultant rose gold/ pinkish or reddish-pink hue that comes from the high copper content in 14k rose gold.
In other words, the higher the content of copper in gold, the deeper the pinkish hue – which is why the 10k rose gold has a deeper reddish hue than 14k rose gold.
Pros and cons of 14K rose gold
- It’s stylish and a trendy jewelry color
- It’s regarded as the most romantic metal color, thanks to that pinkish-red hue.
- It’s relatively very affordable compared to 18k gold because the copper takes a significant amount of jewelry, hence a lower price tag.
- The high content of copper makes it quite durable and resistant to scratching.
- Beautifully complements most skin tones
- It’s not always readily available as yellow or white gold, despite being a stylish choice.
- It’s not hypoallergenic, and you may be allergic to copper or, in other cases, the traces of nickel that may be present in the metal alloys mixed in
What is 14k Yellow Gold?
Last on the list of gold alloys is 14k yellow gold. It is one of the most beautiful and lustrous colors of gold and a great option for anyone looking for a glistening type of gold jewelry to draw attention.
Yellow gold is created from blending pure gold with a higher percentage of silver and a little copper. It is lustrous and has more of a yellow than a pinkish hue because of the high content of silver and gold.
Pros and cons of 14K yellow gold
- 14k yellow gold is the most hypoallergenic version of 14k gold because it’s made from mixing a high percentage of the most hypoallergenic metals – silver and gold.
- It’s historically the most popular choice of metal for wedding and engagement rings.
- Looks great when used in vintage-style jewelry settings
- Its color is the purest versions of the gold color, unlike the rest of the colored gold alloys
- Easy to maintain
- High malleability makes it the easiest 14k gold to manipulate, which means that you will find the best variety of elegant and intricate designs of 14k yellow gold.
- The color of 14k yellow gold complements the darker skin tones and olives, and it also blends with the lower color-grade diamonds.
- You have to clean and polish it on a regular basis to retain the nice yellow color.
- It’s easily scratched because it is not the most durable gold alloy
The Purity Level 14k Gold
Now that we have the details of the different versions of 14k gold-covered, let’s take a look at the exact percentage purity of 14k gold. Note that, as mentioned above, pure gold is rather too soft for the kind of jewelry that can be worn every day. So, to create wearable, durable, and functional gold jewelry, pure gold is mixed with stronger, more durable metals. The metals that are frequently added to gold include copper, silver, zinc, and nickel, and in the case of white gold, rhodium plating is on the list too. Thanks to this metal blend, you will have a sturdy version of gold that is resistant to rust, corrosion, as well as tarnishing.
So, how pure is 14k gold?
14k gold is a beautiful blend that is made of 58.3% pure gold and 41.7% other metals or alloys like copper and silver – this is 14 parts of pure gold and 10 parts other metal alloys.
Is 14k gold worth anything? (How Much?)
Now, you have an idea of what the best 14k gold-blend would be ideal for you, having weighed in the pros and cons of each available option. But what’s the value of 14k gold? It contains almost 60% of pure gold anyway, so it must be valuable, right? Right!
14k gold is valuable, and call an expert needs to do to determine its actual value is to evaluate the exact value of the pure gold. Often, the value of 14k gold is determined from the 14k scrap gold, which has to be weighed, and its value is determined based on the purity level of the gold – this allows for the determination of the actual weight of the gold in grams.
Today, the stock price/ value of 14k gold stands at $29.33 per gram, $44.07 per pennyweight, and $31151.54 per kilogram.
Is 14k Gold Good for Jewelry?
Yes. 14K gold is an excellent metal choice for jewelry because it’s durable, affordable, largely scratch-resistant, and all the versions of 14k gold are attractive.
Should you buy 14k gold Jewelry?
You can consider 14k gold if you are looking for good quality, affordable jewelry options.
14k white gold jewelry, for example, looks great and is a great/ cheaper alternative to platinum, while 14k yellow gold gives off the traditional gold jewelry vibe that most people love.
Generally, 14k gold is a great choice of metal for affordable engagement rings, earrings, bracelets, pendants, promise rings, and different other versions of fine jewelry.
Regardless of the color of 14k gold jewelry you choose, you should know that 14k gold makes a good metal choice for jewelry to be worn daily.
Just be aware of the small allergy risk associated with 14k rose gold and white gold. Otherwise, 14k gold is durable, affordable, and great for jewelry.