What is 24K Gold, 18K Gold, 14K Gold and 10K Gold?

Karat is the weight unit of gold and its abbreviation is K. Pure gold is 24K/ 24 karates, so 1 karat of gold is 1/24 gold, which equals to 4.16% gold. The higher the karat is, the more gold is contained and the more yellow the gold looks.


What is 24K Gold?
24K gold is 100% pure gold, but it is too soft to be made into jewelry items. So jewelers need to alloy or combine pure gold with other metals to make it harder. 24K gold is usually used in costum jewelry by plating on silver or brass to make the jewelry looks like gold. In some countries, 99.9% gold is considered pure gold and is traditionally favored to craft jewelry items, such as India and China. Jewelry designers like Chow Tai Fook produces the most popular and beautiful gold jewelry in China.

gold content of 24K Gold, 18K Gold, 14K Gold and 10K Gold

Gold content composition

What is 18K Gold?
18K gold means it contains 75% gold and 25% of other metals. 18K gold is highly recommened for fine jewelry. Compaired to 14K gold, 18K gold color is brighter and more yellow because of higher gold percentage it contains. So 18K gold is more expensive than 14K gold. The other 25% metals is usually silver, zinc and copper. When jewelers want the 18K gold to be rose gold, they use copper. For white gold, they use silve and zinc. Since 18K gold (75%) has a higher gold content than 14K gold (58.3%), it is softer and less durable than 14k gold. For jewelry items of daily wear, like wedding bands, bracelets, cuffs or bangles, 14K gold is a better choice because of its hardness. However, 18K gold is also strong enough to be used for any daily jewelry as long as you give proper care.

 18k gold ring

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What is 14K Gold?
14K gold means it contains 58.3% gold and 41.7% of other metals. 14K gold is mostly used for gemstone jewelry because of its hardness. 14K gold is the most popular gold for fine jewelry because it wears well. 14K gold is resistant to scratches and more durable than the higher karat gold, such as 24K gold and 18K gold. Why it is harder? Because pure gold is a very soft metal, so the more the gold contained, the less durable it is. Compared to 24K and 18K gold, 14K gold has the least gold content, so it is harder for jewelry designs. Moreover, 14K gold represents a beautiful gold color which is the most desirable color for jewelry.

 14k gold earrings

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What is 10K Gold?
10K gold means it contains 41.7% of gold and 58.3% of other metals. 10K is the legal karat limit for a gold to be considered real gold in the United States. Because it contains the least gold, 10K gold color is a paler shade of gold than 14K gold and 18K gold. The jewelry piece which made of 10K gold is very durable because of the high percentage content of other metals in 10K gold. Usually jewelers use silver, zinc, copper and pure gold to make 10K gold. 10K gold jewelry may tarnish easily because of the silver content, but one can polish it to restore its gold color. The gold color will not fade or wear off because 10K gold jewelry is a solid gold jewelry.

10k gold necklace

10K Solid Gold Necklace Sold at GetPersonalizedJewelry

Does Real Gold Tarnish?
24K pure gold does not tarnish,but pure gold can not be made into jewelry. So legal real gold, such as 10K, 14K, and 18K gold can tarnish, but it can be polished to restore its original gold shine. The higher the karat value, the less likely the gold will tarnish. So 18K is the most anti-tarnished gold, followed by 14K and 10K gold. Since gold is alloyed with other metals to make it stronger, such as nikel, zinc, silver, and copper, these metals cause the gold to tarnish. Perfume, soap, perspiration, body chemistry, and chemicals can react with other metals in the gold jewelry, thus the tarnishing happens. 14K and 18K gold jewelry pieces can be used for years without tarnishing as long as you give proper care.


Where to Buy Personalized 14K and 18K Gold Jewelry?
The best place to buy personalized 14K or 18K jewelry is Opersonalized.com.
It offers nearly 3000 different personalized jewelry items to choose from 14K white gold, 18K white gold, 14K yellow gold, 18K yellow gold, 14K rose gold, 18K rose gold, 24K gold plated and sterling silver! You can choose from monogram, nameplate, infinity symbol, initials and more.