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Wedding Bands White Gold - Buying Wedding Bands in White Gold

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When choosing a wedding band, the first consideration you are likely to come across is the composition of the ring. The exact metal or material you choose often depends on your color preference. For most people, this boils down to choosing between white and yellow. Yellow gold is the traditional color of wedding bands, but some people prefer wedding bands in white gold. White gold wedding bands can be a great alternative to yellow gold, especially for people who already wear a lot of silver jewelry.

Years ago, before WWII, platinum was the metal of choice for those who preferred white over yellow. During the 1940s, platinum was required for the war effort and was banned from being used for jewelry. This began an increased trend in the use of wedding bands of white gold that has continued because white gold is much more affordable than platinum while offering very nearly the same look.

Many people do not believe white gold is as precious as yellow gold, but this notion is patently false. Understanding white gold requires you to understand that gold jewelry is not made of pure gold. Pure gold is much too soft to be practical for use as jewelry, so other metals are alloyed into the gold to make is stronger. For yellow gold, the metals used in the alloy are chosen to preserve the natural color of the gold.

White gold contains palladium, nickel, or other metals that add strength while whitening the yellow. The resulting alloy often still has a yellowish cast, so it is plated with rhodium to further whiten it and give it some sparkle. This rhodium plating can wear down after several years, and wedding bands in white gold will need to be refinished at regular intervals. One exception to this is a nickel-free, rhodium-free white gold created by W.R. Cobb and Company known as Precise White Gold. W.R. Cobb claims that their white gold will never lose its color.

The amount of gold in a white gold wedding band is measured in the same way as yellow gold: in karats. Pure gold is 24K and rarely used for jewelry. The highest purity of white gold is 18K. At 18K, white (and yellow) gold is 75 percent pure and durable enough to handle everyday wear. The other common grades of white gold are 14K and 9K. At 9K, the jewelry is only three-eighths gold. The other five-eighths is usually silver.

Before you buy a wedding band in white gold, it is important to consider the alloy content. Many people are allergic to nickel, and it is a common metal used in the alloy, especially in white gold produced in the United States. Europe has banned the use of nickel in jewelry, so if you want to be safe, you should either make sure your U.S.-made white gold is nickel free or buy European white gold.

Wedding bands in white gold have several benefits. The first benefit is that it is less expensive than platinum and more precious than silver. The money saved by using white gold instead of platinum is often used to buy a bigger diamond or other gemstones. White gold is more lightweight than platinum, yet it is very durable. White gold also has excellent scratch-resistance. Many people prefer white gold because it is more versatile fashion-wise. It can be worn with almost any other type of jewelry, whereas yellow gold can clash with many other metals and styles of jewelry. White gold also highlights diamonds better than yellow gold. If you are not planning on having gemstones in your wedding band, this is not a consideration.

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