With myths and pranks on people’s minds for April Fool’s Day, we thought we’d debunk some common myths and misunderstandings about white gold. White gold is used in high-end jewelry because of its beauty. It is both white and shiny, which makes the metal ideal for rings, especially when it is studded with diamonds.

Biggest Misconceptions About White Gold

(Pixabay / NicholasDeloitteMedia)

Because the metal is very popular right now for engagement and wedding rings, it has been the subject of many discussions, some of which are based around myths and misconceptions. Here’s a look at a few of those myths.

Myth #1: White gold resists wear better than yellow gold or platinum.

Generally, platinum is harder than white gold and will wear down more slowly. White gold jewelry typically has a rhodium plating which will wear off between a half a year to two years, depending on the thickness of the application. If you wear a white gold ring or other jewelry, you will need to have it plated periodically.

If you want a white metal that will not wear off quickly, you are better off with platinum jewelry. Platinum is naturally white and will not wear off as fast as gold. While white gold is mixed with another metal such as platinum, which is strong and durable, it does not necessarily inherit the full durability and strength of platinum. White gold is still prone to scratches just like yellow gold.

Myth #2: White gold can come as pure as 24 karats.

Many people believe that white gold is a pure metal, just like regular gold. That concept is wrong because, in order to create white gold, yellow gold is mixed with other white metals such as platinum, silver, palladium, or zinc. Essentially, white gold is a gold alloy. The exact color of white gold depends on the other metals that were added to the mix. White gold jewelry can be made to look even whiter by plating the surface with a very thin layer of rhodium, a metal in the platinum group.

Since white gold is an alloy, it is not possible to produce it at a high purity level. While it is common to find gold jewelry in 18 karats and higher, white gold is available only in less than 18 karats because of the other metals that are added to the alloys.

Myth #3: White gold is less expensive than platinum.

There was a time when the price of platinum was very high, making white gold jewelry a cheaper alternative than platinum jewelry. However, the cost of platinum today is down so much that platinum is now less expensive than gold. That doesn’t necessarily mean that a setting will be the same price in platinum and white gold, however. Platinum is a lot heavier than white gold, but the difference in weight combined with platinum being less expensive than ever should make the settings similar in price.