White gold know-how: Everything that glitters is gold

Exclusive white gold jewelry creations promise timeless joy. But why is white gold premium and where can you find the most beautiful jewelry?

white gold
Source & Copyright by KBH Jewels

Author: Julia Schindler

Gold jewelry can be classic and filigree or symbolic and opulent. What these exclusive pieces of jewelery have in common is that they are timeless and bring joy from generation to generation. Apart from the style of creation, there are also differences in the alloy of the gold. Particularly high quality and popular: white gold. But what exactly is hidden behind the precious metal, what are the advantages and where can you find the most beautiful pieces of jewelry?

What is white gold?

White gold is an alloy of gold, the chemical symbol Au. This means that it is a mixture of different metals. Consists of shares of other precious metals such as silver and platinum or nickel and palladium.

Pure gold is very soft and therefore not hard enough to be processed - especially when manufacturing delicate rings. As a consequence, jewelry creations made of pure gold - or with a high percentage of gold - would quickly lose their shape and become scratched.

No matter which gold you choose, it is always important to ethical gold to put. This ensures that raw materials are extracted free of toxic pollutants and is mined under fair working conditions. Most manufacturers use the "Fairminded certification".

Premium white gold

Different gold nuances can be achieved depending on the choice of metals for the alloy. While every metal used in an alloy deprives the gold of the yellow color intensity, the nuances can range from steel gray to blue-gray to pale yellow, depending on the metal mix ratio.

The higher the proportion of platinum or palladium, the more defined the white-gray-silvery color of the gold. A quality feature. The White Gold Task Force of the World Gold Council and Manufacturing Jewelers and Suppliers of America. This categorizes different colors of white gold and differentiates between the quality levels 1. Premium White, 2. Standard White and 3. Off White.

Chopard - Happy Dreams white gold chain women

weißgold

Source & Copyright by Chopard

approx. 6.270 € - available at Farfetch

Differences to other precious metals

1. White gold versus platinum

As a natural, white precious metal, platinum is slightly lighter than white gold, which, depending on the ratio of the alloy, can have a slight yellowish sheen, for example. Platinum is more expensive to work with. The reason for this is that it is the hardest metal in jewelry processing.

Abrasion and scratches are correspondingly lower with platinum and other precious metals. That it is therefore marginally heavier is noticeable when wearing rings - but should be seen as a quality feature rather than a burden.

Caution: Due to the hardness of the metal, platinum does not scratch itself, but jewelry made of other precious metals does if it permanently rubs against platinum. An example of this would be the combination of a marriage and engagement ring on one finger. White gold, on the other hand, is easy to wear with other pieces.

2. White gold versus silver

In terms of color, white gold and silver don't give each other much. They are so visually similar that an untrained eye can often see no differences. Nevertheless, it is worth distinguishing between the two - there are differences in terms of hardness and oxidation. Differences that affect the longevity and quality of the piece of jewelry.

Silver has a very low hardness. The result: it bends easily - especially with filigree creations. On the other hand, more material stability can be achieved through an alloy, which is why white gold is more robust and pieces of jewelry made from Eden metal remain flawless for longer.

A big plus, because jewelry should be timeless and can and should be worn for several generations. The oxidation of silver is also a common problem. Due to sulfur in the air, chemical compounds cause it to turn gray to black. While this can be eliminated with silver cleaning cloths, it does not even occur with white gold.

3. White gold versus yellow and red gold

Yellow gold is made from an alloy of gold, silver and copper. The aim is to maintain the pure gold color while improving the material properties. The major difference between white and yellow gold lies in the alloy and the associated optics. It looks similar with rose gold. The color spectrum of red gold ranges from rust red to rose gold. The reason for this is the high copper content of the alloy.

However, this also makes it prone to oxidation: regular maintenance is a must. Since platinum is in the alloy of white gold, it is harder and therefore more stable and more scratch-resistant than yellow and red gold. The high quality of the precious metal is also often reflected in the price.

Cartier - love wedding ring

weißgold

Source & Copyright by Cartier

approx. 1.140 € - available at Cartier

Overview of advantages and disadvantages of white gold

Benefits

  • No oxidation, no discoloration
  • Simple processing (adjustments can also be made afterwards)
  • High quality (high gold content and addition of platinum)
  • Available in different shades, depending on the alloy
  • More robust against scratches than silver, yellow and red gold

Disadvantages

  • Sensitive to scratches compared to platinum
  • Depending on the alloy, often more expensive than other gold variants

Must-have: white gold marriage and engagement ring

The classic Tiffany variant is probably the symbol of an engagement ring - elegant, beautiful, timeless, simple. The choice is usually a silvery ring, as this shade brings brilliants and diamonds to the fore. In addition to aesthetics, it must also shine in terms of combinability and suitability for everyday use. The same goes for wedding rings.

And is exactly the reason why white gold is the preferred material for engagement and wedding rings. While a white gold ring captivates with simple elegance, it is also practical. Despite its silver look, it doesn't scratch that easily and is resistant to discoloration. Although platinum is even more robust, the white gold price scores points.

But also for everyone who is not currently preparing for a romantic occasion, there are many beautiful creations. Be it a bracelet or a chain for men or women. Jewelry made from this material is high quality, beautiful, durable and can give every outfit the right elegance.

About the creation of white gold

The origin of the precious metal lies in Germany in 1912. In Pforzheim, a city in Baden-Württemberg. Due to political upheavals, it was no longer possible to obtain platinum from Russia at that time. But since it was very popular, an alternative had to be found quickly.

This alternative should have the silvery color of platinum, but in contrast to conventional silver, it should not oxidise and thus tend to discolour. Despite the popularity of platinum, it was considered to be comparatively heavy and also its processing was laborious due to the hardness of the precious metal.

Through the process, the alloy, for the production of white gold, the disadvantages of other precious metals could now be countered. For the first time, a metal was found that was cheaper and easier to process than platinum, but had the same color, without showing any traces of the yellowish character of gold and did not tarnish like classic silver.

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