White gold is a popular metal for jewelry, especially wedding bands and engagement rings. White gold is not actually pure white, despite its name. In point of fact, prior to the plating process that gives it its bright, silvery appearance, it typically has a pale yellow color.
WHAT IS WHITE GOLD?
Gold is combined with silver, palladium, nickel, and/or zinc to make white gold. The gold is colored and made more durable by adding these additional metals. The manufacturer, as well as the desired color and durability, can influence the alloy's precise composition.
Once the gold alloy is created, it is often plated with a thin layer of rhodium. Rhodium is a rare and precious metal that is even more reflective and resistant to corrosion than silver. The rhodium plating gives the white gold its bright, silvery appearance and makes it more scratch-resistant.
While white gold is often described as a type of gold, it is important to understand that it is essentially just a gold alloy that has been plated with rhodium. This plating is not permanent and can wear off over time, particularly with frequent wear. As a result, it is important to have white gold jewelry re-plated with rhodium periodically to maintain its bright, silvery appearance.
White gold is a great choice for those who want the look of platinum or silver without the higher cost. It is also a popular choice for those with sensitive skin, as the additional metals in the alloy can make the gold less likely to cause skin irritation.