14k Vs. 18k Rose Gold: Engagement Ring (Which Is Better?)

14k Vs 18k Rose Gold

Gold jewelry comes with different quality levels that are typically indicated by karat. You can buy 10k all the way up to 24k gold. But what does that mean?

14k rose gold is lower quality than 18k. The karat indicates how pure the gold is. Pure gold is 24k. That means there aren’t other metals or alloys mixed into the gold. Rose gold is not pure. The rose color is created by mixing copper into the gold. 18k rose gold is the closest you get to pure.

You’ll discover what rose gold is and how it’s made in this article. We’ll look at the difference in karat and what it really means. So, keep reading to figure out which one you should choose.


Is Rose Gold Real Gold?

Rose gold is real gold, it just isn’t pure gold. In other words, you can’t have 24k rose gold. 

Rose gold is gold blended with other metals. The pink tint comes from the addition of copper into gold. Since there’s an added substance in the metal, rose gold is never pure.

That does not mean it’s not real gold, though. Rose gold is real gold blended with real copper. The copper adds the color and dilutes the gold, which in turn brings the karat down.

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14k vs. 18k Rose Gold

14k rose gold typically has more copper in it than 18k. However, it may not be an increase in copper that takes the karat down. 

Rose gold may also have silver in it sometimes. The reason for this is that gold mixed with copper can produce more of a red color. The introduction of silver softens the red down to pink. 

Changing the amount of copper, gold, silver, or any other metal changes the rose gold karat.

18k rose gold is about 75% gold and 25% copper. 14k gold has only around 58% gold in it. That means that 42% of your 14k rose gold ring is copper alloy.

Do They Look Different?

There is a distinct difference in the appearances of 14k and 18k rose gold. 14k looks more pink than 18k. That makes sense because there is more copper in 14k rose gold.

18k rose gold looks more golden with just a hint of pink. 

Is Rose Gold Durable?

Rose gold is not as durable as yellow gold. It’s softer than yellow gold.

Rose gold is not a good choice for someone who will potentially bang their jewelry all around. It scratches easier and is more likely to get damaged than traditional gold.

If you’re worried about your jewelry’s durability but you still want rose gold, go with 18k because it’s harder than 14k. 

Is Rose Gold a Good Choice for Me?

The most important consideration when you’re looking into purchasing a rose gold ring or piece of jewelry is what’s in the gold. So, what does this mean?

Rose gold consists of copper, and sometimes other alloys or silver. Where pure gold is hypoallergenic, rose gold is not. There is potential for an allergic reaction to the jewelry. 

Another concern for many people is the copper. Think about a penny that you find outside. What does it look like? Copper is prone to oxidation.

A copper penny starts out looking pinkish beige. Then, it turns brown. Finally, once it’s oxidized, it turns green. 

If a copper penny can turn green, so can copper jewelry. Jewelry that has copper in it can turn skin green, as well. You may notice oxidation and even separation between the gold and the copper. 

Rose gold is an ideal choice for some people, but if you have sensitive skin or known allergies, you should opt for pure gold. 

How Do I Care for Rose Gold?

Rose gold is prone to tarnishing because of the copper that oxidizes. Should you start to notice your gold turning brown, green, or black, you should clean it.

One easy way to clean your rose gold jewelry is to use mild dish washing soap in warm water. You can clean the jewelry with a soft cloth or a soft-bristled toothbrush.

Make sure you rinse the soap from the jewelry thoroughly. Leaving behind soap residue can dull your jewelry or cause it to tarnish even more.

If you’re going to use a ready-made polish or jewelry cleaner, make sure it isn’t too strong. Harsh chemicals may cause reactions with the metal and deteriorate it.

Look for a polish that’s specially made for rose gold.

Does Rose Gold Cost More than Traditional Gold?

Rose gold costs less than traditional gold. This is because there are other, less expensive metals and alloys mixed into the gold. 

Most of the time, rose gold costs less than both yellow and white gold. Keep in mind it also isn’t as hard as traditional gold because of the copper and other metals.

It’s a bit more delicate than yellow gold, which also brings down the cost.

Does Rose Gold Look Cheap?

Rose gold is beautiful and does not look cheap. Though it’s not everyone’s cup of tea, rose gold has become increasingly popular over the last couple of decades.

This year has been a big year for rose gold purchases. 

We will caution against allowing the jewelry to become dirty and tarnished. That will make it look less valuable. It also causes damage to jewelry, sometimes, which does decrease its value. 

Can I Wear Rose Gold Jewelry Every Day?

You can wear this jewelry every day. It does well with daily use if you maintain it properly.

It’s a good idea to get into a routine of cleaning your jewelry every couple of weeks or once a month. You also want to store it in a dry place that’s not exposed to direct sunlight.

This will help extend the life of your rose gold jewelry. 

Can I Wear My Rose Gold Jewelry in the Shower?

We recommend you take off your jewelry when you get in the shower. You’ll keep any jewelry looking better for longer by always taking it off when you shower, bathe or swim. 

The chemicals in pool water aren’t good for your jewelry. The soaps and shampoos you use in the shower and bath may not be good for your jewelry, either.

All these substances can cause harmful reactions with the metals in your jewelry pieces. 

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Who Looks Good in Rose Gold Jewelry?

Rose gold is great because it looks good on all skin tones. Yellow gold can be tricky because it only complements darker or olive skin tones. 

Rose gold looks amazing on everything from the palest of pale skin to the darkest of dark skin. You can even choose from the different karats of rose gold to find the best tone for your skin.

Paler skin looks great with lower karats because there is more pink in the gold. Warmer, dark skin tones look better with higher karat rose gold that has less pink in it.

Is Rose Gold Going Out of Style?

Rose gold is currently gaining in popularity. It’s not something that will ever go out of style. There may be ebbs and flows in the trends, but it is always in style. 

It’s fun to play around with different colored stones and rose gold. You can come up with some unique looks that are completely different than what traditional yellow or white gold would look like.

What’s the Best Way to Make a Choice Between 14k and 18k Rose Gold?

You must consider what works best with your skin tone and if you have sensitivities to different metals. Do you want to see more pink in your jewelry or would you like there just to be a hint?

18k rose gold is closer to hypoallergenic, not as pink, and harder than 14k. On the flip side, 18k rose gold also costs more than 14k. 

You can make your choice based on these factors.


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The Bottom Line

Rose gold is a hit right now. Many shoppers are turning to it as a less expensive and unique alternative to traditional yellow gold for things like engagement rings, gold necklaces, and gold bracelets. 

18k rose gold doesn’t appear to be as pink as 14k because it has less copper in it. The copper is what provides the rose pink tone. If you want more pink, go with 14k, and 18k for less pink.




Lindsey graduated with an MBA in 2009. Since then, Lindsey has worked in the retail and consumer service industry as a manager, advisor, and marketer. Lindsey is also the head writer and Co-founder of Rvandplaya.com. Lindsey is based in Morgantown, West Virginia.

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