Are you trying to decide what kind of metal to get your ring made of? What is the best balance of cost vs. investment? We will try and answer some of those questions here!
NOW FEATURING: Cobalt/Gold
Thanks to our partner CROWNRING, we are now able to provide our clients with Cobalt and Gold ring options. It combines the durability and affordability of cobalt, with the colour, style and value of gold. These unique styles are available in the CROWNRING and CARLEX brands. Ask one of our associates today to learn more and browse the collection.
Metals and Alloys
Typically in North America we find 10k (karat), 14k, 18k, 19k and occasionally 22k gold. The different types of alloys out there can change the color of gold to be white, pink or any other of the rare but beautiful gold colors out there. Gold in its purest form (24k) is considered pure gold and is not ideal to use in jewellery because it is so soft. Gold is also very heavy in its pure form, and chains that have been made from 24k gold have been known to pull themselves apart under its own weight!
Metals typically used in Jewellery:
Sterling silver is a combination of 925 parts fine silver and 75 parts of copper. Sterling silver is quite soft because of the high content of fine silver which is nearly as soft as 24k gold. The copper is added to give stability to the metal and allow jewelers to create pieces with this bright white metal. Real sterling silver will tarnish over time and does require maintenance.
Stamped: “PT”, “PLAT”, “PT950”, “950”, “900”
Platinum jewellery tends to be one of the more expensive metals to have jewellery made from. This is because unlike gold jewellery which typically tends to be highly alloyed, platinum is very pure because it is 950 parts pure platinum to 50 parts alloy. Platinum is typically considered hypo-allergenic and is a pure white metal so it will not discolor over time.
Stamped: “14k”, “585”, “583”, “575”
14k gold is just over half pure gold (out of parts per 1000). 14k gold is often considered a nice balance of functionality and gold content. Many gold chains are made from 14k gold because it is a strong enough alloy to take a good amount of daily wear and tear.
Stamped: “18k”, “750”
18k gold jewellery is highly sought after for its gold value and rich yellow gold tones because of the high content of pure gold.
Yellow, White and Rose gold: What’s the difference?
Gold in its purest form is a bright yellow. So how do we get white and rose gold? Because most gold jewellery is alloyed, the different metals that we add to gold can affect the color of it. White gold typically has a high nickel or palladium content to change it to a white color. It is an industry standard to rhodium plate all white gold to give it the bright white color we all recognize. This plating can wear down over time, and the lower the karat of gold in the alloy, the more likely the jewellery will tarnish.
Rose gold contains a larger amount of copper to give it that “rosey” look.
Rose gold is very popular these days and can enhance the look of pink tone stones and diamonds.
Stamped: “TUNGSTEN CARBIDE”, “TUNG”, “TC850”
Tungsten is a steel alloy that is heavy and very scratch resistant. Tungsten is very high on the hardness scale and is considered scratch resistant. These rings cannot be sized and the styles available are not customizable. Be careful not to drop your ring on too hard of a surface because the harder something is, the more brittle it is. Tungsten can be white, off- black or a dark steel color. Note: Tungsten uses Nickle as a binding agent and can cause skin irritation in some people.
Cobalt has been used in the medical implant industry for years and has recently moved over to the jewellery industry. It is not as scratch resistant as tungsten, but it is still considered scratch resistant. It is also not quite as brittle as tungsten and is hypo allergenic. Cobalt can also be highly customizable and you can even add platinum and gold elements to it to add to the value of your ring. Cobalt jewellery can be bright white and a true black color.