18 Carat White Gold
In its pure form, gold is 24 carat and has a distinct, intense yellow colour. 18 carat white gold is represented by the ‘750’ hallmark signifying a pure gold content of 75%. Similarly 14 carat is ‘585’ with 58.5% pure gold content and 9 carat ‘375’ has 37.5%.
By mixing a variety of other white metals such as palladium and silver, the concentration of pure gold is reduced to achieve a lower carat. This process is known as alloying.
The use of 18 carat white gold has become increasingly popular over the years, mainly due to its white colour and cost effectiveness to platinum. 18 carat white gold tends to enhance the colour of diamonds in engagement rings and diamond jewellery.
White gold jewellery usually undergoes a coating process called ‘rhodium plating’. Rhodium is also a white metal similar to platinum and provides a piece of white gold jewellery with a ‘chrome-white’ coating. 18 carat white gold usually has a darker white shade. This coating does wear off with time due to abrasions and normal wear and tear. It can however be reapplied easily. The longevity of rhodium plating will depend on a number of factors such as the acidity level of a person’s skin, as well as jewellery use and its exposure to reactive chemicals (like peroxides for hairdressers).
At Kalfin Jewellery, we recommend the re-coating of your diamond ring or diamond jewellery every 12 months if required. This process will not only ensure that your jewellery is in premium condition visually, but will allow us to check the claws and settings to safeguard its structural integrity. Rhodium plating is a relatively cost-effective process that doesn’t take long to do.