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How To Choose Gold Jewellery - Your Gold Carat Guide

Posted by Emily Lawrence | BSPOQ on 14th Feb 2023

How To Choose Gold Jewellery - Your Gold Carat Guide

Gold jewelry has been worn for thousands of years and remains a go-to for any collection to this day. While this precious metal has always been highly sought after not all pieces are the same. If you're wondering which metal to choose for your next accessory or aren't sure which carat is best for your engagement ring - our guide is here to help.

In this blog, we'll explain the science behind the carat rating and the benefits of all the unique types of gold. We will even touch on other metals including platinum and palladium, so you can make the right choice for your collection.

Yellow GoldRose GoldWhite Gold

Silver JewelleryPlatinum JewelleryPalladium Jewellery

The Carat - How To Find The Gold Content Of Any Piece

Even the least savvy jewellery collector has heard of the term 'carat' (or karat in the United States) in passing. Not to be confused with the carat used to measure the weight of diamond jewellery, the term measures the purity of gold pieces.

The term comes from a type of coin common in the 19th century known as a mark. These coins were weighed using the same carat system we use for gemstones today, and since pure gold was too soft, other metals were used to harden the coins. This ended up with the term carat referring to the percentage of the coin's carat weight made up of pure gold and creating the system we use now.

One gold carat is 1/24 (or 4.1667%) of a pure gold alloy. To put it in simple terms, a piece of jewellery with a 22-carat rating is 22/24 parts gold and 2/24 parts another type of metal to form an alloy. Our handy chart has broken down all the different carats to make buying gold jewellery even easier.

Yellow Gold

Thomas Sabo Earrings Mark Milton Jewellery Thomas Sabo Ring

Even as far back as 4000 BCE, yellow gold jewellery has been seen as a symbol of luxury. Known for its deep warm toned colour, yellow gold is an ideal choice for signature pieces. Yellow gold is particularly suited to warm undertones and has risen in popularity for minimalist pieces.

A gold-plated ring like this piece from Thomas Sabo looks perfect solo or as part of a stacked look - you can also accessorise with contrasting silver. Gold hoops are a staple of any collection, and these 18 carat hoops add a touch of elegance to any ensemble. This 9ct gold necklace by Mark Milton is a true staple and essential for any lovers of yellow gold.

White Gold

White Gold Necklace White Gold Wedding Band Sapphire White Gold Earrings

White gold jewellery is endlessly elegant and a fashionable alternative to classic gold and other metals like silver or platinum. While yellow gold is usually alloyed with copper, white gold uses pure gold mixed with white metals such as nickel, magnesium, and palladium. These metals are what give white gold its beautiful silver tone.

White gold is a popular choice for wedding bands, and this ring uses unique etchings to create an unforgettable look. The malleable nature of white gold makes it an ideal choice for gemstone settings, and these sapphire earrings contrast perfectly

Rose Gold

Swarovski Rose Gold Necklace Rose Gold Ring Rose gold bracelet

The striking pink of rose gold has made it one of the most popular metals for jewellery pieces in the past few years. The colour of this gold means it's better suited to a wide range of skin tones and complements any complexion. Rose gold is made by mixing pure gold, silver, and copper to create a bold gold alloy.

This delicate rose gold bracelet by Swarovski is a stunning example of modern minimalist jewellery pieces, while this chunky ring is designed to stand out. Rose gold can also be worn with gemstones, and this necklace uses a striking pink stone.


Silver Chunky RingSilver NecklaceSilver Engagement Ring

Sterling silver is one of the most popular precious metals and is often seen as a luxurious symbol. Silver is durable and soft enough to be malleable, making it an excellent choice for making all types of jewellery. Versatile and sophisticated, silver is a wonderful choice for any gemstone.

Chunky silver rings are a chic and contemporary way to accessorise, however, delicate silver rings are a wonderful choice for engagement rings. Silver is the best metal for anyone with cool undertones, and this necklace is perfect for any ensemble.


Platinum Necklace

Platinum is an enduring option that has remained popular for years. The ultimate luxury, platinum has a stunning silver shine that makes it highly sought after. Platinum is also incredibly durable and is a fantastic choice for wedding bands thanks to their longevity.


Palladium Necklace

Palladium also falls under the platinum category but is softer and easier to mould. This means it can be flattened and merged into intricate designs. Palladium metal is slightly more affordable, which makes it a very popular choice for rings.

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