Did you know that pink gold/rose gold dates back to the Roman Empire and the Columbians? The Roman Empire had pink-colored gold coins that came about from the impurities in gold, which is to say that the discovery of rose gold was unintentional. Afterward, rose gold was used by Columbians who didn’t come across this gold variant accidentally but actually had skilled metalworkers who made them.
The jewelry scene saw the use of rose/ pink gold in Crown Gold which was introduced to the High Society in the 16th century. Today, rose gold is worn by pretty much everyone.
If you are considering rose gold jewelry, not just because it matches your skin tone perfectly and is trendy, but also because it seems to be the one jewelry style that seems to work for you, your purchases will be more intentional and guided.
You are one of the individuals who wish to only buy jewelry that will really serve you and last, which means no room for allergic reactions and skin irritations from metals like nickel. In other words, you need jewelry that is actually very safe for your oversensitive skin. This brings us to the big question of the day – does rose gold have any nickel?
Does rose gold has nickel?
The short answer is that the best quality rose gold jewelry doesn’t have any nickel. But although this is the case with rose gold and yellow gold, there are situations where the rose gold jewelry may contain traces of nickel. This often depends on the casting methods used when creating the pieces of jewelry made of rose gold. Here is a detailed post on this topic: Does rose gold has nickel?
The components of rose gold
To have a better understanding of the components in rose gold, we first need to look at the process through which rose gold jewelry is created.
Rose gold is an alloy of gold made from pure gold. Thanks to the extreme level of softness of pure gold, it cannot make jewelry, and it as to be hardened for jewelry use by mixing it with other metals – alloying. Alloying is important as strengthens and hardens the gold. But alloying doesn’t just make gold strong; it is the process that results in the different variations of gold.
Rose gold is created through the addition of copper and silver to the gold in certain proportions. Often, 58.3% or 75% pure gold will be used and mixed with about 23% of copper, and the rest often contains silver and zinc. But zinc and silver aren’t the only two white metals added to pure gold; there are cases where nickel is added.
Now, depending on the amount of copper added, the resultant rose gold can be more pink or reddish.
In cases of rose gold with nickel, the proportions often vary, and 14k rose gold will have a little more nickel than 18k rose gold. In the case of 14k rose gold, there is about 11% nickel incorporated into the rose gold, alongside 7.7% zinc, 23% copper, and 58.3% fine gold.
However, nickel isn’t present on all types of rose gold, with the best of high-quality and nickel-free rose gold often made of pure gold, copper, and silver.
Why rose gold has nickel in it?
The reason why your rose gold jewelry might have some nickel has to do with the fact that the nickel may be needed to add strength to the gold and also for a better balance of color.
Note that 14k rose gold is often more likely to have nickel in it than 18k rose gold because the latter boasts a bigger percentage of pure gold. Hence fewer alloys incorporated.
How much nickel found in rose gold?
18k rose gold might not have any nickel in it or maybe just trace amounts, but 14k rose gold may have as much as 11% nickel incorporated.
Note: Higher Karat gold, less Nickel in it. Lower Karat, More nickel in it!
Tips for buying rose gold jewelry with less nickel
- Buy Higher Karat Rose Gold
The first thing you should consider doing when buying rose gold jewelry that is free of nickel is to look at the karatage. Oftentimes, 18k and all higher karatage rose gold will contain fewer impurities, and this often means that you are buying jewelry without nickel in it.
For the lower karatage rose gold jewelry, there is a risk of the nickel being present because jewelry makers cannot use too much copper or zinc, and adding more silver only increases the price of the jewelry.
And because white metals must be added to the gold to create the perfect hue of rose gold, jewelers are forced to use more of the cheaper white metals like nickel and zinc to create the 14k rose gold.
- Insist on nickel-free rose gold
This might not work always because not all jewelers are trustworthy, but as long as you are insistent on the nickel-free rose gold jewelry, then you are likely to go home with jewelry that will not irritate your skin.
- Don’t assume that the rose gold jewelry is nickel free
Although it is a known fact that most of the rose gold sold is free of nickel, there is always that slim chance that the hypoallergenic jewelry you buy contains traces of nickel. You may want to ask about the rose gold jewelry’s casting methods before buying that jewelry.
- Buy your rose gold jewelry only from the most reputable sellers
This is an important thing to do when you are looking for safe, nickel-free rose gold jewelry. Unlike jewelers that don’t seem to have been around for sometime or are little-known, purchasing jewelry from reputable sellers often means that you are buying for people who will not lie about the quality of what they sell, and if there is an issue with your order, you can easily take the jewelry back to them with little hassle.
Everyone looking for best-quality jewelry is always looking for nickel-free versions of jewelry. If you are looking for the best of rose gold jewelry, there is a slim chance that the jewelry might have traces of nickel. You could lower this risk by investing in the higher karat rose gold sold by reputable jewelers.