Diamonds may be a woman’s best friend, but a diamond is merely a pretty rock without gold. Since the earliest days of recorded history, people have been entranced by gold. From the moment humankind saw its enchanting glitter in the sharp rays of the sun, we’ve found a plethora of uses for it.
We’ve used gold in trade and bartering as a backing for modern currency, and we’ve created the most beautiful adornments and high-end accessories from it. Chief among these is the engagement ring. More than a pretty band to show off to your nearest and dearest, like the Amari engagement ring, it’s a promise toward what some would argue is the most sacred quest of all: everlasting, unconditional love.
The Problem with Yellow Gold
Whether you’re thinking about a 2 carat cushion cut diamond ring, or perhaps even a 2 carat oval diamond ring, yellow gold has become an iconic setting for classic engagement and wedding rings. Yet, it still has shortfalls. The most glaring issue with pure yellow gold is that gold is a very soft metal. The scientific explanation for this is that gold has a weaker molecular structure than most solid minerals. Unlike diamonds, which have covalent bonds in which each carbon atom is bonded to four other carbon atoms, pure gold has a cloud-like structure of electrons that move between atoms.
What all this scientific babble boils down to is that pure metals are too soft to use for the products we make out of metals. While other metals have a heat treatment hardening process, gold is hardened and strengthened by combining it with other metals. This is called an alloy, but saying that you have a diamond alloy ring won’t win you the praise that an 18-carat gold ring will.
Another issue with yellow gold is that it’s usually much more expensive than other types of gold. Yellow gold is an icon in our modern society, and it speaks to a more opulent and glamorous time in human history. It is also the way that many currencies are backed. Technically, a country should not have more coins or notes in circulation than gold in its reserves. Therefore, gold is quite literally how we determine the value of various things.
Is White Gold the Right Choice for an Engagement Ring?
As it turns out, there are many reasons to choose white gold over yellow when it comes to bling that goes with that all-important question of your radiant engagement ring. Below are some of the most important reasons you should choose white gold when you pick out a fine jewelry engagement ring.
The Test of Time
How long do white gold rings last? Due to it being alloyed with other stronger metals, white gold is much more durable than its yellow alternative. While yellow gold rings corrode and tarnish over time and sometimes even rust, white gold will stand the test of time. There is reasonable care involved with white gold, though. White gold gets its luster and brilliant color from its rhodium coating. Every few years, you’ll need to have it dipped in rhodium again, but this is a simple and largely inexpensive service. Choose white gold and level up from the classic simple gold wedding band to a Juliana engagement ring or even an elongated cushion cut engagement ring.
Speaking of Service
White gold is much easier to perform repairs on than any alternative. This doesn’t mean you should attempt your own repairs on your 3 carat pear shaped engagement ring with a blowtorch and a pair of tweezers, but it does mean forking out less when you have your ring repaired professionally. White gold has a melting point which makes it easier for trained jewelers to manipulate. Other metals like yellow gold and platinum typically require stones to be removed before metalwork can take place, but going for white gold will usually save you the removal and resetting costs.
Intricacy and Intrigue
Due to the use of various high-grade alloys in white gold, it’s more malleable than other varieties. This means there’s much more freedom when it comes to design. You can create intricate and intriguing patterns and settings with white gold that are either impossible or simply too difficult with platinum and yellow gold. So, instead of a simple petite solitaire set in platinum, you could have something similar to the Ava engagement ring: a spectacle of sparkle.
What About the Price?
How much is a white gold engagement band? The price depends on several factors, but there’s a little less to consider, seeing as we’re talking exclusively about white gold here. You’ll want to select a center stone first. This will be the main focus of anyone you show your engagement ring off to. Center stones should be chosen to match particular band sizes. A smaller stone, for instance, stands out more on a narrower band unless there’s a particular style you’re going for, like baroque or art deco. A simpler band will cost you less.
Do diamonds look better in white or yellow gold? Your center stone should be as close to flawless as possible, with a clear color grade. A stone with slight yellow tints or noticeable inclusions will look even more so set in white gold. One pro of yellow gold is that it can offset color and inclusion to a certain degree. While white gold will likely mean higher grade diamonds, the gold setting will still be more affordable than yellow gold or platinum.
Side stones are not a must, but they can be the perfect way to make your center stone look more prominent. Side stones are smaller than center stones and can be less flawless due to their size. They are also sometimes colored stones as opposed to crisp white diamonds.
White gold is the latest trend in engagement jewelry, and for a good reason. It’s more durable, affordable, and easier to maintain than yellow gold. You should consider it if you’re looking to pop the question. Now that we’ve answered some of your burning questions, you can go on the search for the perfect white gold engagement ring with the right knowledge.