Since prehistoric times gold has been known as highly valuable and is long been considered the most desirable precious metal all over the world. Gold represents a symbol of wealth, immortality and power.
In its most purest form gold has a yellow colour and is not very convenient to be used in a jewellery, because it is very soft. Although not very convenient pure gold is still used in certain region like China, where it is more common to wear pure gold jewellery. To make it more wearable and tougher gold is mixed with other materials like silver or copper. This mix can also modify the colour gold, resulting in different shades of yellow gold, white gold or rose/pink gold. The purity of the gold alloy(mixture) is measured in karats.
Gold Karat Karat or carat measures the purity of the gold. Although it is pronounced the same and written the same (when using “carat”) do not confuse this karat with the diamond’s carat, which measures the weight of a diamond. The most common karat used are:
24 karat: also referred 999, 24 karat is pure gold and 999/1000 is gold. 24 karat gold jewellery are sold mostly in Asia. 24 karat gold jewellery are very soft and proper care need to be taken when wearing a 24 karat gold jewellery.
22 karat: 22 karat gold contains 9167/1000 pure gold. Although not as soft as 24k gold jewellery, 22 karat gold jewellery still need to be worn with extra caution.
18 karat: also reffered as 750, 18 karat has 750/1000 gold in it. 18 karat is the best gold alloy to use for making exclusive jewellery. It is a very hard material, while still keeping it gold exclusivity.
14 karat: also reffered as 585, 14 karat has 585/1000 gold in it. 14 karat is widely used in jewellery, because it is very durable and yet affordable gold.
9 karat: 9 karat gold contains only 375/1000 gold. Although it still have some traces of gold, in The Netherlands 9 karat gold is not considered gold.