Types of Metals Used in Jewelry

platinum engagement rings

Let’s begin with 14k and 18k gold. Both of those metals are good for engagement rings. Each of these gold alloys are a lot cheaper than platinum. 14k gold, whether it’s yellow or white, has 58.33% gold content and the remainder of the alloy is composed of different harder metals like nickel, copper, palladium or zinc.

Whether 18k gold is white or yellow, it has a gold content of seventy five% with the rest of the alloy mixture being other hard metals.

14k gold is tougher than 18k gold and is a more secure alternative for diamond engagement rings. Platinum is the hardest (60% extra dense than gold) jeweler metal. It is far stronger, heavier and costlier than gold.

Although platinum doesn’t tarnish, it can scratch overtime and like gold, it needs to be re-polished once in a while. Platinum is not only costly because of its rarity, hardness and shine. It’s also pricey because it takes a skilled craftsman to work it.

Platinum is the best choice of metallic if the engagement ring setting is holding an expensive diamond. Basically, you need to invest a little for better security of the stone. The alternative is to have a 14k gold ring setting made with a platinum head to carry the middle diamond.

Overview of All 3 Types of Metals

All three of those metals have been used for many years as ring settings. As a jeweler, I’ve had the pleasure of overseeing a jeweler restoration division and through the years, I’ve seen a number of rings returned for repair.

If it was a hoop that required repairs, it was often an 18k gold ring with accent diamonds or a setting that had melee diamonds fallen out. My educated guess is the 18k gold alloy was not arduous enough. And just so you know, women don’t like to half with their engagement rings for a repair.

Both 14k and 18k white gold diamond rings should be rhodium plated once every few years. Rhodium plating keeps the metallic looking white and this process is not costly at all. That said, you do not need to fret because it would typically take years of wear in order for it to be tarnished.

At the end of the day, the choice of metals is really up to you and largely determined by your needs and budget. For those savvy consumers, here’s a tip to save money – a 14k white gold engagement ring setting with a platinum head could be the most effective choice.