10k vs 14k vs 18k Rose Gold: What are the Differences?

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Rose gold wedding rings

Weddings are one of the most important events in life.

Everything which goes with weddings is thought and done with care.

One particular item on the checklist is the choosing wedding rings.

Their color, shape, stone… finalizing the decision is never a light task.

Wedding rings are special in every possible sense.

Thus their choice much reflects the importance of the event.

From the candidate metals, gold stands out.

No surprise there.

But, gold also offers different alloys to choose from.

One of the most popular choices for engagement rings is rose gold.

When shopping for a rose gold engagement ring, one may have many questions in mind.

Such as:

  • What karat gold is best for rings?
  • Is Rose gold valuable?
  • Does Rose Gold have a stamp?

You’ll find the answers to these and other important questions in this post.

 

What is rose gold?

Gold is a precious metal used as jewelry for centuries.

However, in its pure form, it is unsuitable for jewelry because it is too soft.

Had we used 100% pure gold in jewelry, our precious items would easily get scratched.

They might even get damaged and completely take a lose their initial design.

This is why we use alloys of gold with other metals.

One of these alloys is rose gold.

Rose gold is a gold alloy with copper.

Copper hardens the metal making it fine jewelry material.

It is also responsible for the rose-pink-red color of the alloy.

The richer in copper the stronger gets the rose color and approaches to be red.

rose gold necklace

Rose gold pendant

What is karat?

Karat is the unit used to denote the purity of gold coins, bullion and jewelry.

1 karat represents 1/24 parts of gold in the mentioned alloy.

Totally pure gold, which is 100% pure, is 24 Karat.

18-Karat gold has 75% gold in its alloy.

For more information on gold, you can check the post named “Yellow Gold vs White Gold vs Rose Gold.”

In that post you can find more information on gold alloys and the Karat system.

From the various karatages, 10K, 14K and 18K rose gold alloys are very popular.

They are widely used in rings, earrings and necklaces.

You can easily find jewelry items of these karatages in every store.

But they look very similar, which one should you choose?

 

10K vs 14K vs 18K rose gold: which one is better?

Rose Gold Karat Table
Karatage Stamp Gold parts Percentage Hardness Color Price
 10 Karat  10K  10 / 24  41,7  +++  +++  +
 14 Karat  14K  14 / 24  58,3  ++  ++  ++
 18 Karat  18K  18 / 24  75  +  +  +++

The plus(+) signs in the table are used for illustrating the changes in hardness, color and price levels. They do not show a ratio relation in any terms.

rose gold wedding rings

rose gold wedding rings

10K rose gold has a stronger reddish rose color than 14K rose gold

The rose color of rose gold jewelry comes from the copper in the alloy.

The richer it is in copper, the closer the color gets to red.

Colorwise, you should take into account your skin color and consider your gemstone.

Light rose colors pop out on even light skins.

In this case you may go with, a 18K rose gold ring, choosing the richest in gold.

While if you are on the darker side, a 10K ring could be better.

Not every gemstone is made in the lab like moisssanite.

The stone’s color and tint may vary heavily between stones of different dimensions and type.

For example, you may want to combine a moissanite with palladium or white gold with silvery shine.

On the other side, if you prefer a pink morganite ring, you may choose a rose gold base with appropriate color.

Blue Topaz and diamond Rose Gold Halo Ring

Blue Topaz and diamond Rose Gold Halo Ring

10K rose gold ring is harder than 14K, and 18K rose gold rings

Gold is a soft metal.

Thanks to copper in the rose gold alloy, it becomes a more durable metal.

Now we have a good jewelry metal.

It is hard and durable, just like it should be.

Two of the frequently asked questions about rose gold are

  • Does 14k rose gold tarnish?
  • Does Rose Gold scratch easily?

Rose gold does not tarnish, but it may accumulate epidermic lipids, dirt and dust.

Rose gold is a durable metal.

Its hardness increase with the percentage of copper in the alloy.

Thus 10K rose gold will be more scratch-resistant than 14K, which in turn will be more resistant than 18K gold.

 

Prices do vary

Many factors affect price.

Supply and demand, design, brand but taking everything equal, as gold is a more expensive metal than copper,

Thus the higher the gold percentage the bigger the price will be.

This means a 18K rose gold ring will cost more than its 14K version.

 

To end with, there is no doubt rose gold is a good choice for your next jewelry.

It is a popular choice for engagement rings.

It is a precious and durable metal, ideal for jewelry.

It is resistant to scratches and will serve you many years.

The most common karats are 10K, 14K and 18K rose gold.

18K gold is the richest alloy in gold between these three variations.

While 10K and 14K rose gold have less gold, they are more durable and scratch resistant than 18K jewelry.