Two of the most popular types of precious metals that are often used in the making of various forms of jewellery are white gold and silver. Since they appear similar due to their identical colour, it can often be difficult for customers to make out which is which. It is also generally noticed that customers of fair skin are the ones who are interested in jewellery made of white gold or silver because these precious metals are known to compliment rosy and fair skin tones the best since these are cool colours and would look best with a shade of skin tone that falls within the spectrum of light skin tones. However, apart from their shared colour and complementary skin tones, there is almost no other similarity present between the two which is important for customers to be aware of so that they can make an informed decision of choosing between jewellery made of either white gold or silver. One way to be aware of these differences is by diving into the aspects for which both the metals can be compared and contrasted. Comparing White Gold and Silver Composition White Gold Since the purest form of gold is not capable of being moulded into any form of jewellery due to its extreme softness and malleability, it is essential for gold to be made into an alloy wherein it is combined with other durable and strong metals to give result to an alloy of gold that is highly resilient to any kind of damage in the form of scratches or breakage. White gold is also formed through this process which includes mixing different materials with gold and giving rise to a type of precious metal that closely resembles platinum or silver. The composition includes pure gold combined with other metals like palladium, silver, manganese, zinc or nickel. It is also commonly known that the most durable form of white gold is the one that is mixed with nickel and then coated with rhodium. In the case of white gold, customers with allergies to nickel must be careful while making the purchase and should ensure that the item of jewellery made with white gold that they are purchasing does not contain any part of nickel. The different karats present in the jewellery made of white gold determines the amount of pure gold and other materials present in the piece. With white gold exhibiting a white shade similar to that found in platinum, it is evident that the difference that is found in this shade of gold is due to the presence of white metals like nickel. The lustrous and shiny look exhibited by white gold jewelry because of the presence of other white metals is the reason behind the fame surrounding white gold jewellery. When making a purchase of white gold jewellery, another important piece of information related to its composition that customers must be aware of is the concept of karats and the manner in which it affects the making of any white gold jewellery. Different Karats of Gold Karat, a term exclusively used for gold, is a form of measurement that aids in determining the purity of gold found in any item of gold jewellery like gold rings, necklaces, etc. Fundamentally, karat talks about the amount of pure gold present in a piece of gold jewellery which means that the higher the karat rating a jewellery piece has, the higher is the quantity of pure gold present in it and the four basic karat ratings that are found within the category are 10K, 14K, 18k, and 24K with 10K gold having the lowest amount of purity and 24K gold jewellery made with 100% pure gold. 10 Karat Made up of 41.7% gold and 58.3% alloy, the 10 karat gold is the least in the quantity of purity and cost, and highest in durability and strength. Being the most impure form of gold, it is widely used in the making of affordable forms of jewellery due to its high strength which is due to the mixture that is present in it. However, many high-end jewellers do not even sell items of jewellery made of 10K gold due to the low gold content found in it. 14 Karat A popular precious metal choice for brides and grooms, 14 karat gold is best suited for engagement rings and wedding bands, hence, making them a much-preferred choice by couples. Gold jewellery made of 14 karat gold is more durable and affordable when compared to their successors of 18 and 24 karat gold. With 58.3% pure gold, this durability is a result of the mixture of other metals found in such jewellery, leading to increased resistance to scratches and dents. This gives gold jewellery an opportunity to be more durable and be available in different colours such as white and yellow gold. White gold is very similar to platinum in appearance since both these precious metals showcase a silvery shade of colour. It is also highly compatible with various gemstones and is generally purchased by customers who want to experience the style and effect of platinum but do not wish to invest too much since platinum has always cost 30% higher than gold. 18 Karat Another popular choice for customers, the 18 karat gold is famous for its own set of reasons, mainly due to the fact that it has more amount of pure gold present in its jewellery. With about 75% of pure gold making up an 18 karat gold jewellery’s composition, these result in appearing a lot more vibrant and rich in colour. It is also more suitable for customers with sensitive skin which could get triggered due to foreign metals since the 18K gold jewellery is known to not cause any adverse reaction in the form of allergies for the people that don it in the form of any kind of jewellery. However, the higher quantity of precious metal also leads to decreased durability and higher prices. 24 Karat The purest gold of them all, a 24 karat gold has no mixture present in its composition and is a pure, non-alloyed form. It is also the rarest option out of the three and appears richly yellow. Because of the presence of pure gold in a saturated capacity, it is not possible to create white gold jewellery which could be 24 karats and hence, this karat value is irrelevant when talking about white gold. Also Read: Pave Setting: Let Set Diamond For Your Engagement Ring Design Silver Like gold, even silver’s origins arise from the earth’s crust wherein the natural forms of these precious metals are soft and malleable and so like all gold jewellery, even the ones made from silver are formed by mixing the metal with other materials to form better and stronger alloys. Various forms of silver jewellery contain silver in different amounts. The softest variation is the fine silver which contains 99.9% pure silver is also used in the making of different items of jewellery but due to the high amount of metal present in its compositions, these samples are malleable, weak and unsuitable for jewellery such as rings. Another type of silver jewellery is sterling silver which is the most common form used in jewellery making. With a silver purity of 92.5%, sterling silver is generally an alloy that contains materials like copper, nickel or zinc. Customers who wish to purchase a piece of jewellery made of this type of silver must always look for the hallmark that is characteristic of sterling silver. This includes either a stamp of the number 0.925 or words such as STER, STERLING, STG or Sterling Silver on the item of jewellery. Value White Gold The price of any gold jewellery is majorly dependent on the amount of gold present in them. It is generally seen that from the perspective of price, karats of all types of gold jewellery is valued the same. This can be explained through the fact that 14K of gold of any type, be it white, yellow or rose contains 58% of pure gold and so the gold content would have the same worth. However, if there are any minor differences in the pricing of any type of gold jewellery, it arises from the presence of other metals in the alloy which can too have an impact on the total price of the jewellery. One common knowledge that customers on a tight budget must have is the fact that 14K is the more affordable choice over 18K gold for the jewellery of any type of gold including white gold. The presence of gemstones on gold jewellery also has a huge impact on the pricing with white gold diamond rings being expensive if a diamond of an exceptional cut and quality is used. Silver When comparing the pricing system of silver with that of white gold, it can be noticed that silver jewellery comes under the category of most affordable items of jewellery in the market of precious metals. Although there was a time in the olden days wherein silver had a value higher than gold, nowadays it is affordable enough to be used as costume jewellery or everyday items. Same as white gold jewellery, prices of silver jewellery increases with the presence of other precious materials such as gemstones like diamonds or coloured gems. Pros and Cons White Gold Various pros and cons of the white gold can be noted that every customer must be aware of. Pros Some of the pros are: White gold at the moment has high popularity than yellow gold. It is much more affordable and less costly than platinum. White gold is also more durable and resistant to scratch since it is alloyed with stronger metals. The metal also looks better on people with fair or rosy skin tones. Some even believe that white gold complements white diamonds better than yellow gold does. Cons Few cons of white metal are: For people who are allergic to nickel, white gold could be harmful to them since it is not hypoallergenic and will cause allergic reactions unless it is mixed with alloy metals other than nickel. Jewellery made of white gold needs to be periodically dipped and replace the rhodium plating in order for the metal to retain its colour and lustre. However, this process is inexpensive and often offered by jewellers for free. Silver Sterling silver, the most common type of silver used in jewellery making, also has its own list of pros and cons just like white gold. Pros Some of the pros are: One of the most beautiful precious metals, sterling silver jewellery is a lot less expensive when compared to gold and platinum jewellery. An excellent alternative to costume jewellery, sterling silver jewellery is made with high quality and content, unlike cheap imitation jewellery that has only a thin layer of precious metal which is highly prone to becoming chipped or faded. Designers enjoy manipulating silver into different forms of jewellery because of the malleable nature exhibited by the precious metal. Cons A few of the cons of sterling silver jewellery are: One of the most prominent cons is the softness exhibited by sterling silver jewellery which makes it highly prone to scratches and easy bending under external pressure. Hence, silver jewellery will suffer some kind of damage under the effect of everyday use. The other disadvantage of sterling silver jewellery is the eventual tarnish it will suffer if not maintained regularly and cleaned properly. Also Read: All There is to Know About Rose Gold Jewelry Conclusion Thoughts Based on the information given in the article, customers should be able to properly comprehend the similarities and dissimilarities present between white gold and silver. As mentioned above, silver and white gold have their own set of advantages and disadvantages which includes silver being affordable and hypoallergenic but harder to maintain whereas white gold is more durable and easier to maintain but a lot more expensive and could cause allergies. Hence, the decision to choose between purchasing between either of the precious metals should depend on the customer’s purpose for buying the jewelry. Secondly, personal preference and style is an important factor that should be considered while making the decision.