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Tips For Buying A Rose Gold Engagement Ring

By A Ritani on May 07, 2020

So you’re looking to buy an engagement ring, and you’re considering rose gold. Well, you’re in the right place because rose gold is about as romantic as it gets.

These engagement rings are the epitome of romanticism, and if ever love were to be encapsulated in the form of a ring, it would be rose gold. The charming, “point-scoring” alloy that is rose gold almost guarantees you an answer in the affirmative on engagement night. But if they say no, just know that they probably weren’t worth it to begin with. Kidding.

Over the years, rose gold has interchangeably been the centerpiece to some trends, while taking a backseat to others. Current popular uses of rose gold include the latest iPhone, laptops, and even cars. This trend seems to suggest that we’re in the midst of a rose gold revolution.

Rose gold, without question, is unique. But before we get any further, how is rose gold different, and what do you need to know about it before you make this crucially important decision?

History of Rose Gold

Rose gold came to prominence in 19th century Russia, when Carl Fabergé began using the beautiful metal in his famous jeweled eggs. In 1924, Cartier featured the metal in their iconic Trinity Band, which has since sealed its position as an elegant and timeless choice for fine jewelry.

Rose gold owes part of its wide appeal to the fact that it complements virtually all skin tones. This universality has made rose gold a popular option cross-culturally for many years.

What Exactly Is Rose Gold?

Rose gold is an alloy, that makes use of several metallic compounds, to give it its rich appearance. It’s usually a mixture of gold and copper, as well as some silver or zinc.

Although the terms “red gold”, “rose gold”, and “pink gold” are often thought to be the same, they are actually different and copper content is one of the key distinguishing factors.

A good tip to remember is that as the percentage of copper content in a ring increases, so does its redness in most cases. So, if your goal is to find a rose gold ring that exudes a deeply blush color, then you’ll want a lower karat rose gold ring. For example, a 14kt rose gold ring will have a deeper red tone than a 24kt rose gold ring.

Rose gold can be thought of as a midway point between red and pink gold, because the amount of copper within it (usually around 22%) tops that of pink gold (20%), but comes short of red gold (25%).

Is Rose Gold Durable?

Oddly enough, rose gold is just as durable, or even more so, than white or yellow gold. As a general rule, you’ll find that rose gold is less prone to damaging wear and tear than yellow gold. Platinum however, is stronger than all three.

Due to its inherent strength, rose gold doesn’t require an exterior layer of plating like other types of gold do. This also means that a rose gold ring will resist scratches and dents more than other metals.

Is Rose Gold More Affordable?

You might think that rose gold would be more affordable than yellow or white gold because of the addition of copper which is generally a cheaper metal. However, you might be surprised to learn that yellow gold also contains copper. It’s just a matter of proportions of alloyed metals that determines the color.

While there are negligible price differences depending on the alloyed metals, the amount of gold in a wedding band is what is going to drive the price of a piece of jewelry. Since an 18kt rose gold ring has just as much gold as an 18kt yellow gold ring, it will likely be priced the same.

On the other hand, platinum or palladium jewelry will be priced higher because both of those metals are currently significantly more expensive than gold.

Does Rose Gold Tarnish?

Rose gold has the unique advantage of not tarnishing. In fact, like a bottle of wine, it actually gets better with time.

As time goes by, a sheen-like patina develops, resulting from oxidation. So, the longer your loved one wears the ring, the more the beautifully blush persona of rose gold enhances.

It’s also useful to know, that you can actually artificially manufacture this look, without having to wait years for it to produce naturally. This can be done through various vintage ink and paint products for alloy jewelry.

Is Rose Gold Hypoallergenic?

Because of the copper in rose gold, it is not hypoallergenic. Although copper tends to be the source of the majority of ring-related allergic reactions in people, other materials present in rose gold may also cause reactions.

Palladium, zinc, and silver, may also be used in rose gold engagement rings, so it’s important to be aware of exactly which metals exist in the ring your loved one intends to wear. Ritani’s 18kt rose gold jewelry, which is composed of zinc, silver, and copper, (75% gold, 25% alloy) is a perfect example of the alloyed base of materials contained in many of these rings.

Additionally, lower karat rose gold rings, (such as 10kt) will contain higher amounts of non-gold materials. Ultimately, what rose gold loses in not being hypoallergenic, it makes up for in durability and its soft, blush appeal.

Cleaning Rose Gold

Keeping rose gold clean is essential to maintain the beauty of your ring. Over time, the metal can acquire a natural patina that may dull the look of your setting. Regular cleaning could serve the dual-purpose of both preventing that and keeping your jewelry in good condition.

For cleaning tips and other ring care essentials read 9 Things You Should Be Doing To Care for Your Engagement Ring.

Finding The Right Diamond

Finding the right diamond for your rose gold setting can be a bit tricky, but we’ll briefly break it down for you here. When it comes down to it, your diamond and setting should bring out the best in each other, and this ultimately comes down to a matter of contrast.

Diamond Shape

First, let’s start with what to avoid. Generally speaking, this means avoiding pairing step cut diamonds with rose gold rings. These diamonds, which include emerald-cuts as well as asschers, draw their light from the bottom of the stone which sits close to the band. This in turn reflects the metal’s color more powerfully, giving a colorless diamond an unwanted rosy tone.

Cushion, radiant, and of course classic round diamonds work well with rose gold. Each has tremendously reflective facets that sparkle and shine and offer a beautiful contrast when paired with your rose gold setting.

Color Grades

There’s definitely an art to finding the right diamond color grade that best complements a rose gold setting. On the diamond color scale, stones as low as H and I usually complement rose gold the best. A faint yellow is what a lot of people aim for since diamond pricing usually drops as the yellow tint increases in a white diamond.

That said, a colorless diamond in the D-G range will still be stunning in a rose gold setting. It really comes down to your own preference and something you may want to determine in person. Luckily, Ritani offers a free in-store preview that makes this research easy.

GIA diamond color scale

Image source: gia.edu

Cut and Clarity

In general, cut and clarity grades will make the biggest impact on the beauty of your diamond regardless of metal. It’s best to choose the highest cut and clarity grade you can afford when choosing any diamond.

Read more about cut and clarity grades here.


Like the idea of rose gold, but still don’t know where to begin your online search? Start here and see our favorite rose gold rings on our Instagram page.


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