18ct Rose Gold

Associated with femininity and elegance, rose gold is a beautiful material choice for any piece of jewellery, but is particularly striking in 18ct rose gold wedding rings and engagement rings, thanks to its subtle shine that compliments any skin tone. Rose gold jewellery is a very popular choice among our customers, with pre-owned antique rose gold jewellery as lovely today as the day it was produced. Contemporary jewellery designers are keen to use this precious metal in their pieces, boosted by celebrity endorsement and its unmatched versatility.

What is 18ct rose gold?

Gold has been considered a precious metal for hundreds of years, with ancient Mayan and Egyptian civilisations taken with its glowing form, which they believed bore a striking resemblance to the rays of the sun. When mined, solid gold is a yellow colour, hence the term ‘yellow gold.’ To make rose gold the mined gold is smelted with a mixture of metal alloys to change the colour. In the case of rose gold, copper and silver are added to the mix to give it the pink blush tone that we have come to know and love. How much copper and silver are added to the mix depends on two things - one, the desired tone of the rose gold, and two, the preferred durability of the final piece of jewellery.

Gold in its pure form is a soft metal which is measured in carats. Solid gold is 24ct, which is unsuitable for jewellery, scratching and denting easily. Jewellery is produced in alloys using 22ct or less to give it longevity. At Bradleys, we prefer to deal with 18ct gold, which is hard-wearing and has a distinct pink hue that endures over time.

Rose gold composition

Rose gold equates to a composition of 75% gold, 22.5% copper and 2.75% silver. There are also lesser found variants of rose gold known as red gold and pink gold which have compositions of 75% gold and 25% copper and 75% gold, 20% copper and 5% silver respectively. Red gold is less durable than rose gold but has a warmer tone. Pink gold is lighter in shade, but is more hardwearing. Some jewellers prefer these compositions to the standard form for these reasons, but caution must be noted when purchasing them as they will require more care than rose gold.

The history of rose gold

Rose gold became popular in the early 1900s when it was used extensively in Faberge’s egg creations for Russian royalty. It remained on the cusp of cutting-edge jewellery design into the early 20th century, with designers such as Tiffany and Co and Cartier producing show-stopping jewellery in delicate pink shades. Perhaps the most famous piece of jewellery of the art deco era, the 1924 Cartier Trinity band, saw three intertwined rings in yellow, white and rose gold being used as an 18ct gold wedding band for the first time. The design is so timeless it is still made by the company today, with variations including engraved surfaces and rings studded with sparkling diamonds.

While rose gold fell out of favour in the 1970s, it is now experiencing a revival thanks to a host of famous wearers, including Blake Lively and Brie Larson.