What Is White Gold?

September 20, 2019 By swj-eric

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If you’re new to Selling Fine Jewelry, you may have a lot of questions about white gold. This precious metal, after all, is called “gold” but looks like silver. White gold also looks similar to Platinum, an extremely rare and expensive metal. This can make it difficult to estimate its overall value.

Yet, before selling your pieces, it’s wise to understand what white gold is and how it compares to other metals. Read on to learn more.

What Is White Gold, Exactly?

White gold is made of Real Gold, which is yellow. However, the gold is combined with one or more white metals to make it lighter. These metals also improve the gold’s overall durability and strength.

Common metals used to make white gold include:

  • Nickel
  • Platinum
  • Silver
  • Copper
  • Zinc

But even when these metals are added, it usually doesn’t have the bright silvery-white color that many people associate with white gold. Instead, it may look off-white with hints of pale brown, pale pink, or light yellow. The hue depends on the exact combination of metals used.

In reality, this off-white shade is the true color of white gold.

To hide this off-white shade, rhodium plating is typically added. Rhodium is a vibrant silvery-white metal. It’s in the same family as platinum, which means it naturally forms in the same mineral deposits as platinum.

Essentially, the iconic bright color of white gold is all thanks to rhodium plating.

How Is Purity Of White Gold Measured?

White gold is weighed in karats, just like yellow gold. For instance, if a white gold piece is made with 18K gold, it means the gold is 75 percent pure gold and 25 percent other metals.

As with all gold items, you can find the karats stamped on the white gold piece.

Pros And Cons Of White Gold

The pros and cons of white gold are both related to its rhodium plating.

Like platinum, rhodium is extremely strong and shiny. So, when it’s added to white gold, the finished product is more durable and resistant to scratching. It also has a beautiful luster that’s often compared to a mirror.

The drawback, however, is that rhodium plating doesn’t last forever. It will eventually wear off, exposing the off-white tint underneath.

But luckily, you can have your white gold piece re-plated with rhodium. If you’re planning to sell your white gold someday, it’s a good idea to get it regularly re-plated, especially if you wear it often.

Can White Gold Cause Skin Reactions?

Because white gold may contain different types of metals, it’s important to know how it might react with the skin.

For example, many people are allergic to nickel. If someone has this allergy, wearing white gold made with nickel may cause redness, itchiness, and irritation. Therefore, nickel-free jewelry is typically preferable.

Silver and copper can oxidize and cause skin discoloration, so white gold made with other metals is often more desirable.

Is White Gold Valuable?

If you’d like to sell your white gold jewelry, you’d be happy to know that white gold is valuable.

To give you an idea of how much you might make, let’s compare it to silver and platinum.

White gold is worth more than Silver. This includes sterling silver, which can be melted and refined to pure silver. And while silver holds its current market value, you’ll still get more money by selling your white gold.

In fact, compared to silver, white gold is considered to be a greater investment.

But white gold is worth less than platinum. For example, a setting made with platinum may cost twice as much as a similar setting made of white gold. This is due to the extreme rarity of platinum metal.

In short, if you sell white gold, you’ll make more than silver but less than platinum.

Sell Your White Gold At Southwest Jewelry Buyers

Do you have more questions about white gold and what it is worth? Visit the experts at Southwest Jewelry Buyers.

Our Arizona jewelry buyers are ready to pay top dollar for your unwanted white gold. We buy all Types Of Gold, including broken jewelry and scrap gold.

When you’re ready to Schedule An Appointment, call us at (480) 773-8004 and come see us in Scottsdale Park.