Is Moissanite Better Than CZ? The 5 Facts You Need to Know!

Is Moissanite Better Than CZ? The 5 Facts You Need to Know!

Moissanite and Cubic Zirconia are both diamond alternatives that can look gorgeous and cost significantly less than a similar-sized diamond would. Even though Moissanite and CZ have those things in common, they certainly aren’t the same in many other areas.

Is Moissanite better than CZ? Moissanite is definitely the better option if your primary concern is durability. Moissanite is significantly harder than CZ. That hardness means added scratch resistance. If your primary concern is cost, then Cubic Zirconia may be the better choice because it’s significantly less expensive. 

More than likely, you’re not shopping with just one characteristic in mind. You probably want the most durable ring you can get at the best price you can find. In the remainder of this article, I’ll share information that will help you determine whether Moissanite or CZ is the best fit for you, based on your unique needs.

Moissanite vs CZ: Scratch Resistance

Mohs Scale of Hardness is a relative scale that illustrates which stones are harder or softer than other stones. It essentially ranks stones from hardest to softest and applies a numerical rank that helps you to understand where they fall in the hardness ‘pecking order’.

Diamond is the hardest stone known to man, so it has the highest rating on the scale (10). Talc is the softest stone on the scale, with a rating of just 1. Other stones fall somewhere in between the two extremes. Moissanite is definitely considered a hard stone. It has a score of 9.25 to 9.5, making it one of the hardest stones available for rings. At a score of 8 to 8.5, Cubic Zirconia isn’t in the same league as Moissanite when it comes to durability. CZ is far from the softest stone that’s used as a diamond alternative, but it’s not nearly as durable as Moissanite.

The numerical difference between 8 and 9.25 may not seem like much, but the difference in their actual hardness IS significant! Remember, that The Mohs Scale of Hardness is a RELATIVE SCALE. This means that the only thing the numbers clearly communicate is WHETHER a particular stone is harder or softer than another stone. The numbers can’t convey HOW MUCH harder or softer the other stone is. Even jumping from an 8 to 8.5, for example, could represent a HUGE difference in the actual hardness between two given stones.

With that context in mind, the actual difference in hardness between Moissanite and Cubic Zirconia is significant when it comes to the longevity of your ring. Hardness directly equates to scratch resistance. The harder your stone is, the less likely it is to scratch when your hand comes in contact with other objects and surfaces in your everyday environment. By contrast, the softer your stone is, the MORE likely it is to scratch!

This means that it’s much easier to maintain the beauty of your Moissanite stones, over time, than it would be with CZ stones in comparable pieces of jewelry. If durability is one of your primary concerns, but you don’t want to splurge on a much more costly diamond, you may want to stick with something like Moissanite!

Fact 1: Moissanite is significantly harder than CZ, which means it’s going to scratch far less easily.

Moissanite vs CZ: Sparkle

Both Moissanite and Cubic Zirconia are known to throw off a lot of sparklebut which is BETTER? If you’re the type that just can’t get enough sparkle, Moissanite is your best bet!

The two primary elements of the sparkle effect are fire (colorful flashes of light) and brilliance (flashes of white light). Moissanite outperforms CZ in both areas (it even outperforms diamonds in this area).

Comparing Components of Sparkle

Type of Stone
Cubic Zirconia:

One other important consideration of sparkle, is how well a stone tends to sparkle through dirt and grime. Some stones get muted and dull-looking very quickly. CZ tends to be affected by buildup from dirt and oils much faster than Moissanite. While it’s a good idea to keep your Moissanite clean, it’s known to be a low maintenance ring that continues to sparkle like crazy, even through the kind build-up that dulls other rings!

Those that own Moissanite rings will often tell you that they can’t keep their eyes off all the flashing white and colorful bursts of sparkle they constantly see as they move their ring under light.

Fact #2: Whether both are clean or dirty, Moissanite out performs CZ in sparkle.

Moissanite vs CZ: Retaining Facet Shape

Center Stones are carefully cut with very precisely positioned surfaces. Both the flat surfaces (Facets) and the ridges in between those facets help to create the sparkle effect. If the facets, or ridges in between facets, are damaged, it could seriously inhibit the stone’s ability to sparkle.

Unfortunately, CZ isn’t hard enough to hold it’s shaping indefinitely. As rings are worn daily, they come in contact with various things that can wear down softer stones—like Cubic Zirconia. This means that over the years, the ridges in between facets can start to become rounded instead of having crisp and defined edges. When you compare a new CZ stone against a new Moissanite stone side-by-side, the cuts all look similar. It’s hard to imagine that the two stones could wear so differently over time—but they do.

Ridges wear down on Cubic Zirconia

That change has a major impact on the look of the stone. The stone that once dances with sparkle starts to look dull and lifeless. Moissanite is hard enough to hold its angles and edges despite years of abuse from daily wear.

Fact #3: The ridges between facets will wear down and round over time on CZ. Because Moissanite is significantly harder, it retains its original shape over time.

Moissanite vs CZ: Anticipated Life Span

Because of the difference in hardness between these stones, their anticipated useful lifespan is quite different. A Cubic Zirconia will typically last 3 to 10 years before needing to be replaced—depending on how frequently it’s worn and how carefully it’s protected. Of course your CZ stone won’t turn to powder, or fall off your finger, if you wear it longer than the approximate useful life mentioned above—but after years of wear, the stone often looks dull and tired. It doesn’t sparkle like it once did, and surface scratches may be visible.

A Moissanite stone, on the other hand, should be able to last for many decades. Like diamonds, Moissanite is considered a ‘forever stone’. That essentially means that it’s durable enough to be an heirloom piece that’s handed down to future generations.

Being a ‘forever stone’ doesn’t mean it’s indestructible—just that it’s destruction resistant. Diamonds are the hardest stone on earth, but they can still crack, break, shatter, or even scratch, given the right circumstances. Moissanite is similar. You don’t have to baby it as much as softer stones, but you need to exercise some reasonable caution. If you go white water rafting, for example, it would be a good idea to remove your ring, whether it’s Moissanite, Diamond, or CZ.

Fact #4: The typical useful life of CZ is 3 to 10 years, while Moissanite can last through multiple generations.

Moissanite vs CZ: Resale Value

When you sell a used ring, expect to take a loss. That’s going to be the case whether you’re selling a diamond, a Moissanite, or a CZ ring. If your buyer wanted to pay retail, they would probably prefer to purchase a new ring from a jeweler. Used ring buyers are looking for a deal (savings).

Having said that, CZ is typically inexpensive to purchase new, so it’s essentially valueless on the used market. People can afford to purchase a new CZ, so selling a Cubic Zirconia used is hardly worth anyone’s time in most cases.

Moissanite is more expensive. A one carat Moissanite stone typically costs $300 to $600 depending on the color and where you purchase it. I did some research for a recent article, comparing the resale value of Moissanite to the resale value of used diamonds. I compared real second-hand rings that were being offered for sale in my area to compile that data. You can review my findings HERE.

Fact #5: Moissanite resells for more, but also costs much more to purchase new. CZ costs very little and isn’t as durable, so it can sometimes be harder to resell. 


Moissanite is certainly the far more durable stone that can symbolize permanence for engagement rings, wedding rings, and anniversary bands. It’s the better choice if you’re looking for something that’s as diamond-like as possible without having to cover the hefty cost of diamonds.

CZ can be beautiful in rings. While it isn’t as scratch-resistant or long-lasting as Moissanite, it’s still the right choice for some couples. Cubic Zirconia can allow couples with extremely tight budgets to get a ring that should last, and look beautiful, for several years without incurring ring debt. Several years later, once the couple is better prepared for the expense, they can upgrade to something like Moissanite or a diamond if they want to. Another affordable option, is to simply replace the CZ stone with a new CZ stone when the stone starts looking too worn. There’s nothing really wrong with that approach either.

For couples that can afford just a little more, Moissanite offers incredible value. It can provide you with a forever stone, and lots of beautiful sparkle, at a frugal price.

Related Posts:

When Does Moissanite Look Fake? | The 3 Main Giveaways

Why Buy Cubic Zirconia Engagement Rings?

Which is Better Moissanite or Cubic Zirconia?


Does Morganite Get Cloudy? Can it be Avoided or Fixed?

Does Morganite Get Cloudy? Can it be Avoided or Fixed?

If you’ve been wondering how well your ring might hold up over time, you may have wondered, or worried, about the haze or cloudiness that some stones can take on as a result of age or exposure. Will the same type of thing happen with your ring? You, no doubt, want your Morganite ring to always look as warm, clear, and vibrant as the day you first slipped it on?

Does Morganite get cloudy? Morganite can get cloudy and dull as it accumulates oils and dirt from your daily environment. A careful cleaning should be able to remove that film to restore its color and clarity. Cleaning needs will vary, but If you’re wearing the ring daily, it wouldn’t be unusual to clean it every week or two.

The accumulation of dirt and oils is one path to a cloudy appearance, but there are other ways that Morganite can attract a milky haze. I share more information on what cloudiness is, how to avoid it, and also how to fix it in the paragraphs that follow.

When Good Stones Go Cloudy

Morganite isn’t the only stone that can look cloudy under certain circumstances. It can really happen to any stone—though some tend to cloud faster than others for reasons I’ll explain a little later.

Early Cubic Zirconia is an example of a manufactured stone that commonly clouded with age. Manufacturers went in search of a solution and found stabilizing agents that they were able to incorporate to address the issue. Today, Cubic Zirconia isn’t known for consistently clouding, however, corners may have been cut on some of your cheapest CZ stones (like using less effective stabilizing agents, or skipping them altogether) to save money. On the surface, the purchase price may look attractive, but the clarity of such a stone won’t endure for long. Without the right type and quantity of stabilizers in it, the CZ stone could end up cloudy.

So, why is Morganite any different? Morganite isn’t a manufactured stone—it’s mined from the earth (so no stabilizing agents aren’t added or needed). It’s a naturally stable stone that should not experience clarity changes as the direct result of the passage of time. 

What Makes Morganite Cloudy

There are several primary factors that could cause Morganite to occasionally take on a cloudy appearance over time.

Buildup on the surface of the stone: Again, build up most frequently comes from the natural oils on your skin, as it combines with the dirt that your hands come in contact with every day. Some of that dirt is on things you pick up or touch, and some is simply floating around in the form of dust. It’s pretty unavoidable if you’re wearing your ring regularly.

Hand creams and lotions can be a source of additional oils, speeding the process of build-up. At a minimum, you should remove your ring until any topical treatments have been rubbed in well.

Water can also lead to buildup on the surface of your Moissanite. Most water has dissolved minerals in it. After the water has evaporated and the surface has dried, a coating of minerals can get left behind.

These mineral deposits are commonly referred to as ‘hard water buildup.’ Hard water deposits can obstruct light flow for your ring, which can change its appearance, making it feel more dull and lifeless.

Fortunately, the cloudiness that comes from these forms of buildup is usually temporary. A good cleaning should be able to remove the accumulated residue.

One further risk related to hard water buildup is that any mineral grit that settles on the surface of your ring could potentially cause scratching over time as your ring rubs against materials or objects that cause friction between the mineral grit and your Morganite stone. Carefully cleaning your Morganite ring, on a regular basis, helps to protect your ring from both types of danger.

Contact with harsh chemicals: Certain chemicals could potentially react with Morganite in a way that leaves a white haze on the stone. Depending on the nature of that reaction, the cloudiness could be a temporary inconvenience that just requires a good cleaning…or a permanent marring of the stone.

Because of these risks, it’s best to simply remove your ring before handling chemicals. 

Even diamonds can get damaged through contact with harsh chemicals, so it’s wise to be careful—regardless of the type of stone that your ring contains.

Heavy scratching: When I say heavy scratching, I mean multiple scratches that could eventually combine to block light from entering or moving about the stone. Light flow is a critical component of sparkle.

Scratches are convenient places for dirt and oils to accumulate and hide. The effect of overlapping scratches, combined with the harboring of dirt and oils, can rob your stone of the sparkle it once displayed with ease and abundance.

Yes, Morganite is considered a hard stone, but it’s softer than some alternatives like Sapphire or Diamond. There are things you can do to reclaim your ring and restore its’ original beauty if it gets overly scratched through years of use. I’ll address those potential remedies below.

How to Keep Morganite From Getting Cloudy

My Grandma used to say that, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” It essentially means that a little precaution is a lot less expensive (and painful) than the effort to fix something once it’s broken.

In this section, we’ll focus on simple things you can do to protect your ring (prevention). In the next section, we’ll talk about the things you can do to reclaim (cure) a cloudy ring. Grandma’s wisdom is certainly true when it comes to Morganite care as well—it makes a lot more sense to focus our effort and attention on preventing damage, rather than correcting it. 

The easiest way to protect your ring from damage, is simply to remove it before doing, or handling, things that could potentially harm it. That may sound easy, but it’s often not top-of-mind or convenient. This simple solution takes awareness and discipline.

Remove Your Ring Before…

  • Yardwork
  • Engaging in some hobbies or recreation
  • Cleaning with chemicals
  • Showering
  • Washing Hands
  • Swimming
  • Using hand lotion
  • Applying hand sanitizer
  • Etc.

“Etc.” ends that list, because it’s impossible to make a list that covers every potential risk or scenario—individual interests and circumstances vary a lot!

If you need to remove your ring for long periods of time (as you travel abroad for example) it might make sense to get an inexpensive alternate ring to wear instead of risking potential damage to your Morganite ring. Beautiful rings with a Cubic Zirconia center stone, for example, can often be purchased for $100 or less.

You can wear your ‘alternate ring’ when it’s simply too dangerous to risk wearing your Morganite. Here’s an example of an inexpensive ring that might work well for this type of application. Here’s another good example.

Some people really struggle, emotionally, with the idea of removing their ring—even for a little while. They may feel like they’re breaking a commitment to their partner, or they don’t want to unintentionally send a signal that they might be ‘available’. Some people are also just more comfortable with a ring on their ring finger after years of wearing one. An inexpensive alternative ring is a great, and affordable, solution for all of those circumstances.

Finally, Clean your Morganite regularly to keep it looking its best—and to clear away any grit or residue that could potentially lead to scratching. I’ll talk about HOW to safely and effectively clean a Morganite ring in a moment.

Fixing a Cloudy Morganite Ring

Again, when Morganite starts to take on a cloudy appearance, it’s typically because the ring is dirty, or because of heavy scratching. I’ll address effective methods for cleaning your Morganite ring in the next section.

If scratches are causing a cloudy appearance, you’ll need to have a jeweler repolish the stone for you. The polishing process will make your Morganite look like new again—but be aware that the stone will be slightly smaller after the procedure. You probably won’t be able to visibly notice a size difference, but if you repolish too many times, the stone may no longer fit in its original setting. If that eventually happens, you might need to get a replacement stone…or buy a new band with a smaller setting that fits the new size of your original stone a little better.

Typically, repolishing is only done a time or two over the life of a particular stone. If that’s the case for your ring, you likely won’t have any issues with the stone no longer fitting securely in its original setting.

How to Clean a Cloudy Morganite Ring

The simple use of warm water, mild dish soap, and a soft toothbrush can work wonders! I like this method best because it’s simple, gentle, and inexpensive.

Morganite can be temperature sensitive, so you want to avoid extremes. Moving a Morganite stone from a hot state to a cold state too quickly (or vice versa) could actually cause it to crack. Warm water is a safe middle ground.

Start by dipping a soft infant toothbrush in your bowl of soapy water. Gently scrub your Morganite with the bristles of the soft toothbrush, ensuring that you thoroughly work around each prong and the underside of the stone if it’s accessible.

Infant toothbrushes can often be purchased at a dollar store in many areas. If you don’t live near a dollar store, you’ll likely still be able to find them for only a little more elsewhere.

After cleaning the stone to your satisfaction, rinse it well in warm, or cool, water, and then dab, or blot, it dry with a soft towel.

The final step is to use the cool setting on a hairdryer to fully dry all the cracks and crevices that the towel can’t reach.

As a slight variation on the simple process described above, some have found that adding just a little vinegar to the soap and water mixture described above, seems to help cut through the grime better—and keep their ring clean longer—than soap and water alone.

Vinegar can be a very effective cleaning agent, in fact, many families that favor more natural cleaning products use diluted vinegar, instead of chemical-based spray cleaners, to clean their house.

As a final word of caution, be careful about how you clean your Morganite. If you use diamond cleaner—or a variety of other chemical solutions, you might just damage your ring.

Morganite is softer and more porous than diamonds, Sapphires, and rubies. Some of the cleaners that may be safe and effective for other gems, could potentially harm Morganite. Safe, simple, and effective is best. Warm water and mild dish soap is a good balance of all three.

In Summary

Morganite is a stable stone that won’t go cloudy as a result of age alone. Getting dirty, collecting a heavy covering of overlapping scratches, or a chemical reaction are the most likely causes of Morganite clouding. Fortunately, most of those issues are correctable. A good cleaning or re-polishing the stone can make most Morganite look good as new.

If you take precautions with your Morganite ring, it should look as beautiful as the day you got it for many years!

Related Posts:

Are Morganite Rings Durable? How Long Can They Last?

Can Morganite Get Wet? The Main Dangers & Key Precautions

Are Morganite Rings Expensive? Cost Per Carat vs Diamond

Can Morganite Get Wet? The Main Dangers & Key Precautions

Can Morganite Get Wet? The Main Dangers & Key Precautions

Your hands come in contact with water many times every day. If you want to keep your Morganite ring looking as beautiful and new as the day you got it, you’re probably wondering …

Can Morganite get wet? Water can dull or damage your Morganite ring, especially when exposure is frequent and prolonged. Morganite doesn’t discolor or fall apart as an immediate result of water contact, but regular exposure can have an impact over time. It can cause loss or damage in a variety of ways.

Different types of water can affect Morganite in different ways. In the paragraphs that follow, I’ll explain how water from various sources can potentially cause damage to your ring. I’ll also share information on how you can safely use water to keep your ring looking bright and new.

Protecting your Morganite Ring

The hardness and the toughness of your stone are at the heart of durability. I won’t go into any major detail about either aspect right now, because I have other articles that address each of those areas more deeply.

To quickly summarize, hardness has to do with scratch resistance. The harder a stone is, the less likely it is to get scratched. As scratches accumulate, they can rob a stone of its ability to gather and channel light, making it look old and tired. Diamond is the hardest gem known to man. It has incredible scratch resistance. That doesn’t mean that it CAN’T be scratched, but it isn’t easy for your diamond ring to get scratched up as you go about your daily routine because it’s so hard.

Some stones, like diamonds, are extremely hard, but not equally tough. Toughness has to do with their ability to absorb impacts and pressures without breaking or shattering. Diamonds are so hard that they become brittle. If a diamond falls onto a tile floor, it’s very possible that it will crack or break. I’ve seen it happen. Whether a particular diamond beaks when it falls on a hard surface has to do with a lot of factors (how far did it fall, where was the point of impact, the nature and placement of inclusions, etc). My point is, that hardness isn’t all that matters when it comes to durability.

All rings have to be handled with care. While diamonds are hard, they certainly aren’t indestructible. Protecting your jewelry from damage DOESN’T mean that you have to leave it in your jewelry box constantly. Here are a few simple steps you can take to protect your ring from damage.

  • Keep your Morganite ring away from other rings (they can scratch each other if they make contact).
  • Be present and aware. Try not to bump or brush against things accidentally as you go about your daily routines.
  • Keep the ring away from water as much as possible (take it off first).

We’ll talk about the specific threats that water from different sources can pose in a moment. Before diving into that, I want to quickly point out that some diamond enthusiasts might argue that diamonds are worth their high cost because of their incredible hardness (durability). That has SOME validity on the surface, but there are a couple of important points that should be considered:

  1. Diamonds also aren’t indestructible.
  2. You can easily purchase multiple Morganite stones for the cost of one diamond. This means that you probably can’t save money by purchasing a diamond—based on durability logic.

Some might contend that they DON’T WANT a replacement stone (for sentimental reasons). I get that—everyone will need to make their own decisions on this issue. In my mind, a replacement stone from your spouse is just as special as the original stone they provided for your ring. Both symbolize the same commitment, and can do it equally well.

This is all just contemplation of a ‘worst case scenario,’ it’s hypothetical, but again, if your Morganite got damaged at some point, you could buy another (maybe even a stone with better coloring) and STILL save a boat-load of savings over purchasing a diamond center stone instead.

The Dangers of Treated Water: Sinks, Showers, Bathtubs, Hot Tubs & Swimming Pools

The treated water that your hands come in contact with as you shower, wash your hands, or swim, could damage your morganite over time. The biggest risk comes from chemical exposure. Chlorine is added to the water you shower and wash your hands with. It’s also added to most pools and hot tubs to help keep the water sanitary.

Can you wear Morganite in a pool? It’s really not a good idea, but the ring won’t instantly fall apart either. Even diluted Chlorine probably isn’t great for your Morganite stone, but the bigger problem is the impact that Chlorine has on some metals—like gold. Chlorine can attack and eat gold. It frequently weakens the prongs on these rings, causing them to bend or break more easily. That’s not an impact that you’re likely to see right away, it takes repeated exposure over time before any damage will likely be noticed. 

The toll that Chlorine takes on gold isn’t visible to the naked eye—it’s microscopic. Because of this, some people believe their ring isn’t being harmed. They may continue believing that until the day they finally lose their center stone because a prong bent or broke. Even then, they may have trouble connecting the loss to water exposure because the damage was so gradual.

A good friend of mine found a large diamond on the floor in an airport. There are lots of potential reasons that prongs holding that diamond may have failed, but I wouldn’t be surprised if damage from repeated water contact was a contributing factor.

In addition to the damage that’s sometimes caused by Chlorine, you can also encounter mineral deposits from hard water that form on the surface of your Morganite. These deposits are simply dissolved minerals that are in our tap water. They get left behind as the water dries. They can leave your stone looking dull and lifeless until it gets cleaned well.

A related risk that can also make your Morganite look dull and muted, is build up from the various soaps, shampoos, and conditioners that we use while showering or washing our hands. It’s a really good idea to remove your ring before bathing, showering, soaking, or washing your hands. Some people really don’t want to take their rings off. They feel like they’re breaking a commitment to continually wear their ring, they’re concerned that they might forget the ring and leave it behind somewhere…or the extra step just sounds inconvenient.

Is it Common to Remove Your Ring Before Showering?

Some feel like it’s overkill to remove their rings before doing common practices like washing their hands, washing dishes, or showering. It’s a polarizing issue. Some habitually remove them, others never do. Which camp are you in? Want to hear how others approach the issue? I published an article recently where I share findings from research that I did on this issue. Take a quick look—you may find the data interesting!

The Dangers of Untreated Water: the Ocean, Lakes, Rivers, & Streams

There’s no Chlorine in lakes, rivers, streams, or the ocean, so what’s the real danger of water in those environments? Simple contact with water won’t cause your stone to fade, crack or break. The common dangers can be quite different for these outdoor water sources in some cases.

Salt: Saltwater can be hard on some ring components. Like Chlorine, it’s especially hard on gold. Repeated exposure can damage your rings over time. Here too, the damage isn’t immediate or visibly noticeable, so it can be unnoticed and overlooked for quite some time. The impact of the damage often comes first in the form of weak or broken prongs. Fragile prongs mean that you could potentially lose your Morganite at some point in the future. Because of those risks, it’s best to remove your ring before jumping in.

Woman Swimming in Ocean as She Wonders Will Water Hurt Morganite

Shrinkage: Water can make your ring fit differently for a while. When our hands soak for long periods of time, the diameter of our fingers can change. That happens because our skin starts to shrivel with prolonged exposure, and because cold water causes some temporary shrinkage.

If your ring fits more loosely in the water, there’s a greater chance that your ring could slip off and get lost.

Motion: As you splash and play, rapid movement of water around your stone could potentially loosen the setting.

Outdoor water is also often hard to see through (it’s murky), so you sometimes run the risk of bumping or brushing against something hard, like a rock, a shell—maybe even a watch that someone near you is wearing. That contact could potentially scratch or loosen your Moissanite.

Between poor visibility, silt or sand, and the movement of water, If your stone happens to slip out of its setting while you’re in the water, chances of recovery are slim-to-none.

Spotting: The movement of water in Rivers, Streams, and the Ocean break things down and then move that debris along in a tide or current. Dissolved minerals can dry to form mineral deposits on the surface of your Morganite stone. The deposits only mute the look of your ring until it’s cleaned—but they can also leave a grit on the surface of the ring that could potentially lead to scratches.

How to Make Morganite Sparkle

Over time, the natural oils from your skin can combine with dirt and dust in your everyday environment to create a film that coats the surface of your ring, making it look dull. The film blocks light from entering and moving around inside the ring the way it normally would. Removing the grime isn’t difficult or expensive. All you really need is water, mild dish soap, a soft toothbrush, and a clean towel.

Add a few drops of dish soap to a small bowl of warm water. Dip your soft-bristled toothbrush in the water and then scrub the surface of the Morganite very gently with it. Be careful to get the brustles under the stone and around all prongs as well as possible. When you’re done scrubbing, rinse the ring well, and then dry thoroughly by dabbing carefully with the towel. If possible, it’s a good idea to use a blow dryer on a cool setting to ensure that the ring is fully dry. Without the blow dryer, It can be very difficult to dry the crevices around the prongs and the area beneath your center stone.

In Summary

Morganite can be a wonderful addition to your ring. It’s beautiful, hard enough for daily wear, and distinctive. In order to keep it looking it’s best for the long term, it’s best to avoid contact with water—except when you’re cleaning it. When it does get wet, gently dry it as quickly and thoroughly as possible.

Related Posts:

Are Morganite Rings Expensive? Cost Per Carat vs Diamond

Are Morganite Rings Durable? How Long Can They Last?

How Can You Tell if Morganite is Real or Fake?



Are Morganite Rings Durable? How Long Can They Last?

Are Morganite Rings Durable? How Long Can They Last?

Morganite rings are head turners! They make beautiful engagement rings, wedding rings, and promise rings, but will they stand the test of time?

Are Morganite rings durable? Morganite rings are durable, but they aren’t indestructible. Morganite is a 7.5 to 8 on the Mohs Scale of Hardness. That makes the stone hard enough to resist moderate wear, but not hard enough to resist abuse or carelessness. Diamonds are much harder, but they also cost at least 10 times as much.

Durability is a big deal when it comes to the rings we use to mark significant relationship milestones. In the paragraphs that follow, we’ll explore many aspects of Morganite’s durability.

How Hard is Morganite?

The hardness of stones is typically communicated in terms of the Mohs Scale of Hardness. The scale quantifies ‘relative’ hardness (or how hard one stone is in relation to another), rather than providing an ‘absolute,’ or independent, hardness measurement.

Morganite is a 7.5 to 8 on the scale, but that information only has meaning if you know the hardness score of other stones—so you can tell if Morganite is harder or softer than each of them.

Friedrich Mohs created this scale in 1812, by taking 10 rocks and doing scratch testing with them to figure out which was hardest, which was the second hardest, third hardest, etc. After making those observations, he assigned the lowest number (a ‘1’) to the softest rock in his test, and the highest score (a ‘10’) to the hardest rock. All other rocks were arranged from hardest to softest and assigned a number as well.

The following chart shows the Mohs Scale of Hardness. Notice where Morganite falls (and the stones that are harder and softer).


Can Morganite be Worn Everyday?

Morganite IS durable enough for everyday wear, but that doesn’t mean that you don’t need to exercise some care and precaution in order to keep your rings safe. In fact, even though diamonds are the hardest stone on earth, they aren’t indestructible. If you aren’t careful, they can scratch.

Diamonds can also fracture or break if they’re dropped. Hard to believe right? Diamonds are incredibly hard (scratch resistant), but that also leaves them brittle. What’s the implication? Hit a diamond with a hammer, and it will likely break in two or shatter. My little sister’s engagement ring fell off a counter and hit their tile floor. The diamond broke on impact—diamonds are hard but brittle.

Morganite is less hard…but also less brittle. It likely wouldn’t crack in two if you dropped it onto a tile floor. In that particular aspect, Morganite is MORE durable than diamond.

What can Scratch Morganite?

Since Morganite rates between 7.5 and 8 on Mohs Scale of hardness, anything that rates higher (anything harder) would certainly be capable of scratching Morganite. Saphire is a 9, and diamond is a 10 on the scale, for example, so both are capable of easily scratching Morganite if the stones come in contact with each other.

Storing loose rings together where they can make contact with each other is asking for trouble! You should store your rings so they can’t possibly come in contact with other jewelry items when you aren’t wearing them. If you don’t have a jewelry box that can separate rings well, you may need to take a more creative approach.

  • Store your rings in a plastic pill sorter (the kind that has different compartments representing different days of the week). The container should be able to keep each ring in its own little space.
  • Put each ring in individual Ziploc bags.
  • Wrap them in toilet paper and then apply a little tape to hold the toilet paper in place.
  • Hollow out some space in a packing peanut (about the same size as your ring), and then shove your ring into it until the ring fits snuggly and the peanut offers good protection.

In addition to the danger posed by harder gems, other items that you come across in your everyday environment may be hard enough to scratch Morganite as well. As you grab and hold things, carry objects, or swing your arms as you walk, your ring may accidentally come in contact with objects and materials that are capable of scratching it.

This is where being cautious with your ring really pays big dividends. While Morganite is a relatively hard stone, it still can, and will, scratch with the right brush or impact.

It would be impossible to create an exhaustive list of all the things you may come in contact with that are capable of scratching Morganite. In reality, the list could never be fully accurate, because part of the equation may also relate to force.

As an example, imagine that I very lightly ran a stone over a brick without applying any pressure at all. If the stone doesn’t get scratched by that encounter, it doesn’t mean that bricks CAN’T scratch the stone. If I repeated the same experiment, but this time pushed down on the stone with as much force as I can as I pulled it across the surface of the brick, my outcome could change. This just illustrates that there are multiple factors at play when it comes to protecting your rings.

It’s best to get in the habit of removing your ring before doing things like yard work, heavy exercise, or hobbies that might endanger it.

Does Morganite Get Cloudy?

In the early days of Cubic Zirconia, the stones would often start to take on a milky-white haze with time. People often refer to that type of change as ‘clouding’.

Morganite isn’t a stone that naturally clouds with time. It is possible that contact with harsh chemicals could cause the stone to take on a cloudy appearance, so I’d definitely recommend removing your ring before cleaning with household cleaners or handling other chemicals.

A more common cause of some clouding is the combination of dirt and oils that your ring is exposed to over the course of time. Your skin produces oils that can get on your stone over time, but applying lotions, sunscreen, cooking, and other similar products and activities can sometimes coat your stone in a film that can make it less clear and vibrant than normal. The good news, is that this form of clouding typically just requires a good cleaning to remedy.

We’ll talk about some simple options for cleaning your Morganite ring in a moment.

Does Morganite Lose its Color?

Morganite is often treated to enhance the color of the stone, making it more vibrant. The treatment is referred to as irradiation or heat treatment—they’re really just two names for the same process. Some claim that their enhanced Morganite ring HAS faded with time and prolonged exposure to the sun.

It’s hard to say why that would happen because Morganite is a stable stone that shouldn’t fade. The process used for enhancing the color of Morganite is a permanent treatment. It also shouldn’t fade at all with time or intense light exposure. The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) also claims that Morganite (even treated Morganite) will not fade.

While I believe that’s the experience of most Morganite owners (including my wife), it’s hard to refute the fact that some people evidently do experience some fading with their particular ring. It’s difficult to say what’s different with their stones. There’s some speculation that some of the “Morganite” stones that experience fading are imitation Morganite. An imitation stone could be made of a material like glass, or it could be another stone—like Kunzite—which is famous for fading with light exposure.

Kunzite is so well known as a fading stone, that it’s long been called the ‘evening stone.’ The nickname comes from the fact that people typically only wear Kunzite in the evening (when the sun isn’t out). When exposed to sunlight, the Kunzite’s color washes out, permanently fading the stone.

As an interesting side note, George Kunz, the same man that discovered Morganite, also discovered Kunzite in 1902. He named the stone after himself, which is perhaps one more reason that he chose to later name Morganite after his banking friend, JP Morgan.

Potential Problems with Morganite Rings

ALL stones used in rings have both benefits and drawbacks. Highlighting the potential problems with Morganite rings in this section isn’t intended to imply that the stone is problematic, or should be avoided. My wife has two Morganite rings, and loves them!

This section is simply a convenience. It frames the core issues that some might view as potential negatives, so you can be sure you’re aware.

Morganite is softer than some other stones: Again, Morganite rates between 7.5 and 8 on Mohs Scale of Hardness. That’s not bad, but it’s also not ideal either. By comparison, a colored Cubic Zirconia rates 8 to 8.5. A colored Sapphire is rated at 9.

Even though the difference between those numbers isn’t huge (numerically), the resulting difference in hardness (scratch resistance) can be significant. If a Morganite stone gets too scratched or scuffed over time, it can be re-polished to make it look like new again.

Fading may be possible for some stones, though it isn’t likely: We discussed this issue above. Review that section if you haven’t already.

The color may clash with certain metals and gemstones: The peachy-pink coloring of this stone may not pair well with a variety of metals and colored gems. Yellow gold is an example of a metal that can sometimes clash with the look of Morganite. Rose Gold, on the other hand, can be stunning! Emerald (green) is an example of a gem that also might not pair well with the coloring of Morganite.

The cost is higher than some alternatives: Morganite is far less expensive than many gems (including Sapphire and diamond), but it’s significantly more expensive than colored Cubic Zirconia for example. Because Cubic Zirconia can be more scratch-resistant AND costs less, it feels like a better fit for some.

Can Morganite Get Wet?

You should keep your Morganite ring away from water as much as you can. You can wash the stone with water when needed, however other types of contact with water could have negative consequences with repeated exposure over time.

I’ll provide more information on how to clean and care for your Morganite below.

Here are a few examples of water-related activities that you should remove your Morganite ring for:

  • Showering
  • Swimming
  • Soaking in a hot tub
  • Playing in the ocean
  • Washing your hands

Why remove your ring for all these different encounters with water? There are several reasons actually.

  1. There is Chlorine in tap water—and an even higher concentration of Chlorine in the pool and hot tub water. Chlorine is a chemical that probably wouldn’t be good for Morganite, but it also attacks gold, doing microscopic damage that progresses over time. The greatest risk is weakened prongs. When prongs bend or break, the Morganite center stone could be lost.
  2. Dissolved minerals can settle on the surface of your Morganite in the form of hard water. Those deposits could lead to scratching, but they can also just create a film that blocks light flow and dulls the appearance of your ring until the stone is cleaned.
  3. Like Chlorine, saltwater is hard on gold and could lead to weakened prongs that eventually bend or break. Ocean water also has sand, shells, and other debris that might also lead to scratching or other damage.

Again, the impact of exposure to water typically isn’t immediate. The repercussions could take years to surface, so it’s easy to look at your ring and feel like no harm is being done. As I mentioned earlier, the early damage would require a microscope, and some experience to spot.

My wife has removed her ring for very little through the years. After more than a decade, a couple of the prongs bent, and she nearly lost her center stone. It’s best to avoid contact with water outside of occasional cleanings.

How do I clean a cloudy morganite ring?

When Morganite loses its glimmer, the cause is typically temporary and fixable. I’ll show you how to make Morganite sparkle again.

Basic cleaning is simple. Start with a warm bowl of water and some mild dish soap. Dawn is a popular brand that tends to do well. A small bottle of dish soap will typically cost $2.00 or less. You’ll also need a soft toothbrush that’s made for babies. You can typically find those at a neighborhood Dollar Store. Again, make sure that it’s a soft-bristled toothbrush.

Dip the toothbrush bristles in the warm soapy water and then gently scrub the ring. Work your way along each surface, and carefully scrub around each prong. Get the bristles under the center stone too if you can.

Once you’re done scrubbing the ring, rinse it with warm clean water and then gently dab it dry with a soft, and clean, towel. It may also help to use a blow drier on a cool setting to ensure the ring is COMPLETELY dry before slipping it back on your finger.

Can Morganite Go in an Ultrasonic Cleaner?

Handwashing with the method described above is the safest and most gentle, but Morganite is typically safe to clean with an Ultrasonic cleaner too. I say ‘typically,’ simply because any inclusions or filled fractures in a particular stone could potentially give them weak points or vulnerabilities that other similar stones wouldn’t have.

How often should I clean my morganite ring?

Cleaning frequency depends entirely on where, and how, you use your Morganite ring. I would suggest visually inspecting your ring every 3 to 4 weeks to see if it’s time for a cleaning. If the ring looks more muted or dull than normal, a cleaning should restore it, making it clear and vibrant again.

How Long do Morganite Rings Last?

Exactly how long Morganite lasts, again, depends on how it is worn and cared for. Diamonds and Moissanite are both hard enough to be considered ‘forever’ stones. Their hardness makes them so durable, and scratch-resistant, that they can literally last for generations. Morganite IS NOT considered a ‘forever stone.’ This doesn’t mean that Morganite is a disposable stone, or that it will typically only last a few years. As a matter of fact, Morganite is considered a relatively hard stone, and could last you for decades with proper care and attention.

Morganite won’t just disintegrate over time, but it can collect scratches over time that detract from its beauty and affect the flow of light in the stone. In the next section, I’ll mention how to take care of scratches once you’ve gotten to the point where you want to address them.

Removing Scratches and Scuffs From Morganite

Once scratches have accumulated on the surface of your Morganite ring to the point that they’re really interfering with the look and feel of your ring, you can have your Morganite stone re-polished. The polishing process will completely renew the look of your ring, giving you a fresh and clean surface again.

In Summary

Morganite is a gorgeous choice for engagement rings and rings that mark other special occasions. While it isn’t the hardest stone available, it still is relatively hard and is capable of being used for everyday wear.

If scratches pile up and start to really affect the look and feel of the stone, you can also ways have a jeweler repolish the stone to remove scratches and make it look like a brand new stone again!

Related Posts:

How Can You Tell if Morganite is Real or Fake?

Can Morganite be an Engagement Ring? | The Pros and Cons

How is Morganite Graded for Gem Quality?

Are Morganite Rings Expensive? Cost Per Carat vs Diamond

Are Morganite Rings Expensive? Cost Per Carat vs Diamond

Thinking of buying a Morganite ring? Morganite is gorgeous and distinctive, but can you afford it?

Are Morganite rings expensive? Morganite costs roughly $300 for a one-carat stone, however quality characteristics regarding color, cut, and clarity will influence the cost of individual stones. Size will also influence the cost of a given stone, but not to the same degree you would find with diamonds or other gems.

There are a number of factors that contribute to the cost of Morganite rings. I’ll address the key influencers of cost below.

What is Morganite?

Before diving into cost drivers, it might be useful to quickly explain what Morganite is, and where it came from. Morganite comes from the Beryl family. Emerald and Aquamarine are two other well-known Beryls. Morganite gets its beautiful range of pink tones from traces amounts of manganese.

In 1902, George Kunz discovered a stone that had color shades ranging from pink to purple, which he called Kunzite. In 1910, he discovered a new stone in Madagascar, with hues ranging from pink to peach, he decided to name it after someone else. George was good friends with J.P. Morgan, the banking tycoon, and enthusiastic gem collector. He delighted Mr. Morgan by naming his new discovery Morganite.

Morganite Supply and Demand

Stones can get quite expensive when there is strong demand for a particular type, but very limited supply. Diamonds are a good example of this. If they could easily find them in your yard, for example, they wouldn’t be coveted or valuable. It’s scarcity that makes us willing to shell out large sums of money for them.

In the case of diamonds, that scarcity is carefully orchestrated and controlled by dominant players in the diamond industry. It’s the sense of rarity and exclusivity, coupled with persuasive marketing messages, that fuels the sale of diamonds at incredibly high prices!

If the market were suddenly flooded with a supply of diamonds that far outpaced demand, prices would plummet and demand would begin to dry up. We would no longer crave diamonds if they didn’t provide us with a sense of exclusivity, and we certainly wouldn’t be willing to pay much for them if they were common.

Recognizing all that, diamond cartels carefully regulate the diamond supply to give the false appearance of scarcity. It works—even small stones can cost thousands of dollars!

Morganite isn’t controlled by a cartel of any kind. It’s essentially provided to the market as it’s mined, cut, and polished.

Morganite demand is strong, and seems to be getting stronger! One popular wedding site conducted a huge survey a couple of years ago. They found that Morganite was one of the most popular non-diamond center stones for engagement rings. Moissanite and Sapphire were also at the top of the list.

Morganite is only mined in a handful of countries. It’s primarily mined in Brazil and Madagascar. Less significant discoveries have also been made in places like China, Russia, Afghanistan, a couple of spots in the US, and few places on the African continent.

The price of Morganite could easily climb much higher in future years as demand continues to increase and some of the limited mines that exist get tapped out. If those scenarios play out, the GENUINE supply and demand imbalance could make Morganite MUCH more expensive.

Be careful when buying Morganite jewelry—especially as prices climb in the future due to the rarity of Morganite. There are always fake stones floating around that are made of glass or other materials. It’s a good idea to verify the authenticity of what you’re buying with a certificate from a trusted gemological institute where possible.

Morganite Price Per Carat

Morganite is one of those stones that you may want to consider if you want something a little different than what others are wearing. It’s also a stone that some turn to when they want a colored gemstone for their ring but can’t afford to go with a colored diamond.

Morganite price per ct. is approximately $300, however, there are a couple of caveats

  1. Value doesn’t always scale with size. Morganite is frequently found in larger fragments, so unlike diamonds and other similar gems, the value of Morganite doesn’t climb exponentially as stones get larger. In other words, a two carat stone will cost you more than a one-carat stone, but not MUCH more—and certainly not twice as much!
  2. Color is king. As mentioned earlier, the price of a particular stone is closely associated with the aesthetic characteristics of the stone (things like color, clarity, and cut). Of those visual elements, color is the most important cost driver! A small Morganite stone with vibrant pink color on a small Morganite stone, could be many times as much as a three-carat stone with pail (weak) coloring for example.
  3. Natural coloring adds value. Untreated stones are much more valuable than treated, or ‘enhanced’ stones. Here again, a small untreated stone with great coloring will be far more valuable than a much larger stone (with even more vibrant color) that has had its coloring enhanced.

In light of all that, you’ll sometimes find a one-carat Morganite stone for far less than $300. That sometimes happens when the stone has less desirable coloring or visible inclusions. Those stones may still work well for some rings.

On the flip-side, you can also find one carat Morganite stones that cost thousands of dollars, because they have unusual characteristics that make them far more rare.

A comparison is often helpful. If you look at Morganite price vs diamond pricing for a similar one-carat stone, white (or colorless) diamonds cost about 10 times as much. Colored diamonds (which are a better side-by-side comparison in some respects) cost a great deal MORE. While a one-carat Morganite stone costs approximately $300, a reasonably colorless diamond of similar size will typically run $3,000 to $5,000.

Morganite Value vs Diamond

We’ve already compared the cost of Morganite and Diamond, but what about the value comparison between the two?

We know that Morganite is much less expensive, but can the higher cost of Diamonds be justified? It’s a polarizing question. You can easily find people that will passionately argue their perspective on both sides. Your opinion matters most when it comes to your ring, but I’ll give you a few issues to consider.

We all use different factors to measure value. Value isn’t ONLY related to what you pay—it’s about what you get for what you pay. Based on that, the cheapest option ISN’T always the one that offers the best value.

To illustrate, think about buying jeans. Imagine buying the 3 pairs described below.

  1. You find a pair of jeans on a clearance rack for $5. They don’t fit quite right, but hey, they’re 5 bucks…and you can’t pass that up! You figure that once the material relaxes a bit, they should work fine. You never wore these jeans out of the house. After putting them on once or twice, you decided that you don’t like them at all. The fit just isn’t right, and you don’t really love the look either. You eventually donate the jeans to Goodwill.
  1. A month later, you come across another pair of jeans that you like. You flip the tag and find that they cost $35. The material seems durable, they fit well, and you really like the look of them. You make the purchase, and are glad you did. They’re one of your favorite pairs—very comfortable. The jeans last you for 9years, before you have to replace them.
  1. After a movie at the mall, you walk through a store and find a pair of name brand jeans that look really nice. The cost of the jean seems like a misprint. Who would drop $300 on a pair of jeans? They look nice, fit well, and you’d love to be seen wearing that name brand. You swallow hard, buy them, wear them frequently. You continue to love the look and feel of the jeans. They last for 10 years.

It’s obvious which pair of jeans was cheapest—but which one represented the best VALUE? Most people would agree it’s NOT the first pair. Both the 2nd and 3rd pair were worn regularly and lasted a long time.

From my own perspective, the second pair was the best value, because of the combination of price and utility (usefulness). Those jeans lasted NINE YEARS! When you do the simple math, you find that she essentially paid $3.89 per year to own and wear those jeans.

The third pair lasted 10 years, so she ended up paying $30 per year for the life she got out of them. They were more durable, but from a dollars and cents perspective, the little bit of extra life they provided wasn’t worth their substantially higher price. The one unique value they did bring is a boost of self-esteem that came from wearing the popular label. Was that worth the added cost? That’s one of those questions people will have different opinions on.

Ok, so what does the example have to do with diamonds and Morganite? I’m sure you already get it, but Morganite probably most closely resembles the second set of jeans. It’s more reasonably priced, and provides lots of beauty and utility! We aren’t talking drab by any means! You’ll likely draw lots of compliments when you wear your Morganite ring.

Diamonds are very much like the 3rd pair of jeans. Some people choose this option because they feel a sense of social pressure, and feel a strong desire to conform—others may just love the look of the stone. Regardless, diamonds carry a message about social status. It’s very important to some people that their center stone be big enough to send the silent message that they’re successful. Diamonds are beautiful and will last a long time, but are they worth the added cost? Here again, different people will have differing opinions.

Why is Morganite so Inexpensive?

Rarity combined with popularity is a recipe for high prices. Diamonds are thought of as rare, but in reality, their rarity is an orchestrated illusion. Oil cartels drive the price of oil up by restricting supply. The diamond industry regulates supply in a similar way. They don’t release all that they mine—they very carefully restrict supply to prop up the high prices that give diamonds the feeling of exclusivity that makes people want them.

Morganite is a rare stone that’s found in very few places, but it isn’t consolidated, controlled and manipulated the way that diamonds have been for many decades now. That’s a huge aspect of why Morganite is so much less expensive than diamonds today.

Another key distinction: Morganite doesn’t have the well organized, and heavily funded, marketing messages that diamonds have long enjoyed, to provide awareness, shape our opinions, and fuel demand.

It’s hard to organize, and fund, a consistent and effective advertising blitz unless you have a monopoly in the market (like we’ve seen in the diamond industry for so long).

Key Drivers of Morganite Value

I mentioned earlier that for Morganite, as with most gems, color is king—it’s the most important criteria. The most sought after color for Morganite is pink. Pinks that have a darker, almost reddish hue to them are also desirable. Morganite that has more of a peach or orange hue is much less valuable.

Another important consideration of value is clarity. Morganite is generally ‘eye clean,’ meaning that you can’t see obvious inclusions with the unassisted eye (without magnification) in most cases. What’s even better is a ‘Clean’ stone, where inclusions are present in the stone at all. The more visible and obstructive inclusions are in a particular stone, the less it’s worth.

‘Treated’ or ‘enhanced’ stones undergo a heating process that reduces the orange and peach tones in the stone, making the pink tones more dominant.

Most Morganite on the market today HAS been heat treated to improve color. That’s nothing to be concerned about, but it’s something you should be aware of. The resulting color change is considered permanent. Treated stones sell better than non-treated stones with undesirable color qualities.

“Heat treatment is not detectable, does not fade, and does not hurt the beauty or value of the gem.” -Laurie Sarah

While heat treading doesn’t decrease a stone’s value, untreated stones with good color qualities are often MUCH MORE valuable because they’re far more rare.

Does Morganite Increase in Value?

It’s unlikely that Morganite will increase in value for years. You’ll lose money on nearly all rings if you resell them shortly after buying them. You’ll still typically lose money if you wait decades before selling most rings (once you adjust for inflation).

Because of growing demand, and the prospect of falling supply in the years to come, it’s possible that the value of Morganite may start to climb (possibly substantially). It’s hard to know just how much the price may go up, or how soon, because of all the variables involved.

Morganite Resale Value

Many people buy diamonds with the false belief that they’re some sort of investment vehicle that appreciates with time. This misguided notion is something that the diamond industry benefits from and even fosters through some of their advertising over time that doesn’t offer full disclosure.

Here’s the fact, diamonds are a TERRIBLE ‘investment.’ In fact, diamonds AREN’T investments—they’re consumables. 

Consider this, what happens if you buy a big-screen television and then try to sell it used three months later? Can you sell it? Absolutely, if it’s in good condition and the price is right. Is anyone going to give you what you paid for it? Nope! The same is absolutely true of diamond rings.

Those that don’t believe me may have to learn the hard way, but I promise this is true. If you buy a diamond engagement ring and then try to resell it (even years later), you’re likely to be ‘taken to the cleaners.’ I’m not exaggerating!

In fact, I wrote another article where I summarized research I did around the resale value, and average losses, for used diamond rings. I was careful about the listings that I evaluated. They had to reference the original purchase pricemost had pictures of their original receipts to show as evidence. You may find the article interesting.

Here’s the scoop, you’re going to lose 30% to 70% of what you paid for your diamond ring when you resell it. Are there people that would be interested in a used Morganite ring? Absolutely, but you’re also going to have to resell that ring at a discount. The question, when you compare the resale value for Morganite and Diamonds, is which one will you lose more money on?

The math is EASY, you’ll lose more reselling the diamond. That’s true because you paid a lot more for it. The article that I mentioned above will break down the math for you so you can see how things shake out when you compare the resale of a diamond and more frugal ring choice.

In Summary

The term ‘expensive’ is relative. Morganite certainly brings strong value, and is much less expensive than many alternative gems. Since it’s a fairly hard stone, and has an interesting look, it’s a ring that’s growing in popularity. It’s also a stone with actual rarity, that is likely to get more rare and expensive in the future.

Related Posts:

How Can You Tell if Morganite is Real or Fake?

Can Morganite be an Engagement Ring? | The Pros and Cons

Which is Better Moissanite or Morganite?


Can Morganite be an Engagement Ring? | The Pros and Cons

Can Morganite be an Engagement Ring? | The Pros and Cons

Morganite is a gorgeous stone, but can you really drop to one knee and propose marriage with something other than a diamond in your ring box? Many couples are now choosing Morganite for their special rings—including engagement rings!

Can Morganite be an engagement ring? Morganite can be used for engagement rings. Colored diamonds are incredibly expensive. Morganite is a much affordable alternative. Morganite engagement rings tend to feel warm, feminine, and distinctive. Their tone complements many skin tones and pairs well with a variety of metals.

There’s a lot to consider before settling on Morganite for your engagement ring. In the paragraphs that follow, I’ll tell you about the look, durability, and maintenance needs of this stone, so you can make sure it’s a good fit—and buy with confidence!

Wanting Something Distinctive

It’s always nice when someone notices your engagement ring and complements you on it! It’s common to want something that’s somewhat unique and distinctive—something that stands out and grabs attention. A head-turning diamond is something that most can’t afford. It would often consist of either a large diamond or a fancy colored diamond. The cost of BOTH of those alternatives can be STAGGERING!

If you want a ring that your partner can’t take their eyes off of, it helps to get away from the ‘cookie-cutter’ rings that are traditional in every way. There’s nothing wrong with cookie-cutter, or traditional…if those are the designs fit your sweetheart’s style preferences well, or it’s all you can afford.

You don’t have to go into serious debt to find something that stands out. Colored gemstones, like Morganite, can be a great option! They’re eye-catching, but can also cost a lot less than traditional diamond rings.

The warm tones of Morganite are different than what you usually see on engagement rings. It stands out, turns heads, and collects lots of second looks and compliments!

Color is part of the uniqueness that Morganite offers because its tone can fall anywhere along a spectrum ranging from pink to peach. A morganite color chart can help you to identify the shade that might suit you best. While Morganite engagement rings are growing in popularity, they aren’t yet so common that you’re likely to bump into others with the exact same ring, let alone the same stone color and metal pairing.

The Cost of a Morganite Engagement Ring

A morganite solitaire ring will save you a great deal of money over the cost of a comparable diamond ring! While a one-carat diamond solitaire might cost $3,000 to $5,000, a one-carat Morganite stone might cost just $300. The price will vary to some degree depending on the characteristics of each individual stone and retailer considerations.

The precise cost of a Morganite stone will be dependant on three primary variables:

  1. The size of the stone. All else equal, a larger stone will sell for more than a smaller stone.
  2. The vividness of the stone’s color.
  3. The pricing strategy of a given retailer.

Naturally, rich and vivid stones are always rarer, and therefore, more valuable. Because vivid coloring is more desirable and valuable, many stones are ‘enhanced’. The stones get heat-treated to bring out richer color qualities. Enhancements should always be disclosed to the buyer. Enhancements provide the opportunity to have a look you love…and a price you can actually afford.

How Long Will Morganite Last?

The durability of Morganite (or any stone for that matter) has to do with a few key factors.

  1. Hardness
  2. Toughness
  3. Usage

Hardness means scratch resistance. The harder a particular stone is, the less likely it is to come in contact with harder items in your everyday environment that are capable of scratching it. Diamonds are the hardest stone known to man.

Toughness has to do with how brittle an item is. Hardness has a converse relationship with toughness. Extremely hard items often aren’t tough—they’re brittle and would shatter before they give or bend.

My sister had a diamond solitaire engagement ring that fell off a counter, striking her tile floor. It broke on impact. It was hard (scratch resistant), but NOT tough (It was brittle)!

Morganite is not nearly as hard as diamonds, but it’s also not nearly as brittle. Morganite is ‘tougher’ (less brittle) than diamonds.

Usage relates to how your Morganite ring is worn (how often, how long, and during which activities).

How Hard is Morganite?

Morganite comes in somewhere between 7.5 and 8 on the Mohs Scale of Hardness. The scale is a comparative tool that shows the relative hardness of stones (which stones are harder, or softer, than other stones).

The scale was originally created by taking ten stones of various kinds and testing to see which were the most scratch resistant. The stones were then ordered bases on hardness. The least scratch-resistant was assigned a grade of ‘1’, while the most scratch-resistant got a ‘10’. All other stones were arranged similarly, based on their relative hardness. An example of the scale follows.


A rating of 8 doesn’t tell you precisely how hard a particular stone is (because this isn’t an absolute measurement). The scale really just tells us that Morganite is harder than Quartz, but softer than Sapphire, for example. That means that Morganite could scratch quartz, but it couldn’t scratch Sapphire (Sapphire would actually scratch Morganite if the two came in contact).

This is why you never want to mix your rings together when you aren’t wearing them—the stones on your harder stones will scratch your softer stones and metals.

Information on hardness is helpful to know, because the harder the stone in your engagement ring is, the less likely it is to get scratched as you wear it in everyday life. Your hands bump into all kinds of things as you move around your home, school, or office daily. The harder your center stone is, the less likely it is to get scratched when it comes in contact with hard objects in your everyday environment.

While diamonds are harder than Morganite, they are also MUCH more expensive (and still aren’t indestructible). Morganite is considered a hard stone. It’s capable of lasting for decades with proper care.

Matching Metals

The color range of Morganite often complements Rose Gold beautifully. It also looks nice against neutral-colored metals like silver, white gold, or platinum. Morganite doesn’t look as tied in, or coordinated, when it’s paired with yellow gold. The colors aren’t complimentary.

Some sites allow you to digitally pair your Morganite stone with various ring designs and metal colors to provide a visual of how different combinations of Morganite and metals might look once they’re put together. When rings get to pick all the components of your ring, the ability to preview provides assurance that you’ll like the final look your ring before it’s assembled and shipped.

Morganite Value

Genuine morganite rings can be purchased at surprisingly affordable prices. A one-carat Morganite stone, with good color, can be purchased for about $300. Smaller stones, or those with less attractive coloring, would be even less expensive. By comparison, a one-carat diamond would start at about 10 times the price of Morganite (roughly $3,000).

Morganite rings are quickly growing in awareness and popularity. Just as people sometimes sell used diamond rings when relationships end or they decide to upgrade their jewelry, you can also sell used Morganite rings.

While you’ll still have to resell a used Morganite ring at a loss, the same is true for used diamond rings.

Buying Morganite with Confidence

You want your fianceé to LOVE everything about their engagement ring! Guessing the ring design that your partner likes, and getting it RIGHT, can be difficult. Getting that wrong can be expensive and painful. Because of this, I suggest that you check to make sure that a Morganite engagement ring is something they would like. I would have the exact same advice regardless of the type of ring your thinking about buying.

Even traditional diamond rings may not hit the mark for your sweetheart if they have something different (like a colored gemstone) in mind.

If you’re openly exploring ring options, you can spend a little time together, looking at pictures of Morganite rings online. This could help you to have a greater level of certainty about the ring that you ultimately end up buying.

If you’re hoping to surprise your partner with the proposal, you can try to find a more subtle way to gather their opinion about Morganite engagement rings.

For example, you could talk about seeing an interesting ring on someone recently. You might say that you’ve never really seen anyone wearing that kind of stone before, and you’re not sure you like it. You could then look up an image of a morganite ring online and ask what they think.

There are lots of other ways to gather an opinion without showing your cards—get creative!

Here’s another approach—go ahead and guess. Take a chance on the fact that they’ll love a Morganite engagement ring (they probably will)—but hedge your bets by ensuring that the retailer has a solid return policy. Make sure that you understand the limitations of the return policy, so you don’t have any surprises. If you propose, and your fianceé decides that they would prefer something a little different, you can return, or exchange, the ring.

Pros and Cons of Morganite

All gems used for engagement rings have both advantages and disadvantages. The disadvantages are helpful to be aware of—but they aren’t necessarily a problem in many cases.

By the same token, many of the advantages of a given stone may be nice to be aware of—but aren’t especially important to you. You’ll have to weigh the pros against the cons to determine if Moganite (or any other stone, for that matter) is going to be a good fit for your e-ring.

The Pros of Morganite for Engagement Rings:

  • It’s an inexpensive colored gemstone
  • It’s Durable. The stone is relatively hard and is capable of enduring daily wear
  • It’s a more unique looking ring than your typical diamond allows
  • It compliments most skin tones
  • It’ pairs beautifully with Rose Gold
  • The stone is quite rare

The Cons of Morganite for Engagement Rings:

  • It’s less scratch-resistant than Sapphire and diamond
  • The peachy-pink tone can clash with some metals and other colored gemstones
  • Some brides may want a more traditional looking stone

In Summary

Morganite makes a beautiful engagement ring! It’s a durable stone that can stand up to everyday wear as long as you care for it. Morganite is a rare stone that can help you to create a distinctive looking ring that grabs lots of attention. Fortunately, all those benefits don’t come with an unreachable pricetag. You’ll actually SAVE money when you choose Morganite over many other gem options.

Related Posts:

How Can You Tell if Morganite is Real or Fake?

How is Morganite Graded for Gem Quality?

Which is Better Moissanite or Morganite?


What Is 18K Gold? | The Look, Cost, & Durability of 18 Karat

What Is 18K Gold? | The Look, Cost, & Durability of 18 Karat

Gold is beautiful, and often symbolic, but it can also be expensive. Understanding the unique value of 18k, along with its limitations, will help you make sure you use this form of gold for the right jewelry pieces.

What is 18k gold? 18k Gold is an alloy that consists of 75% 24 karat gold and 25% from other metals that increase the hardness of the mixture and influence color. Metals like copper add both hardness and a pink overtone to 18k Rose Gold. 18 karat gold offers a great blend of enhanced durability and high purity.

In the paragraphs that follow, I’ll give you more detail on how 18 karat gold is made. I’ll also share information on how the look, and durability, of 18k gold compares with the look and durability of other common options, like 10k, 14k, and 24k.

Where is 18k Gold From?

Yellow gold is mined from the earth and refined to remove impurities. Pure gold is much too soft to wear as an engagement ring, or some other jewelry item that will be worn regularly. It’s easily scratched and marred by the accidental bumps that happen in everyday life.

In order to add hardness, other metals are added to a gold alloy, but which metals and what ratio depends on the objectives of the gold mixture. Carefully selected non-gold metals can add durability (scratch resistance) to the final metal mixture. It can also influence color, making the mixture lighter or darker.

Again, the MAIN ingredient in 18k gold is yellow gold, but the second-largest ingredient is Copper. From there, a number of other metals like Zinc, Silver, or Nickel could be added, as needed, to influence hardness and color.

Is 18k Gold Real?

While 18 karat gold isn’t completely pure, it still has very high purity, compared to other options like 10k and 14k. The fact that non-gold metals have been added doesn’t make 18k gold ‘fake’.

Again, these metals are intentionally added to improve the practicality of gold for many purposes that it couldn’t serve well in a pure form.

The 18k mark clearly discloses the fact that the piece isn’t made of pure gold. This helps consumers to be well informed before purchasing jewelry.

What is 18 Karat Gold Worth?

As we look at 18 karat gold price (or value) remember, that this metal is 75% gold (18 parts yellow gold and 6 parts non-gold metals like Copper, Zinc, or Nickel). If you want to calculate 18k gold price, at any given point, all you need to do it obtain the current spot value of 24k gold and then multiply it by .75. If 24 karat gold is valued at $49.89 per gram, for example, 75% of that value will be $37.42. 18k gold would be valued at $37.42 per gram in that instance.

Why is this information useful? If you’re selling used 18k jewelry to a refiner, it would certainly be helpful to be able to calculate the value of the gold you’ll be selling. It’s less valuable when you’re simply shopping for an engagement ring, for example, because the cost of gold isn’t the only factor involved in pricing.

Other factors influencing the cost of an 18k gold engagement ring could include:

  • The design of the ring (both how thick and heavy, and also how intricate)
  • The size of the ring (a size 14 will be heavier and require more gold to produce than a size 5 ring of the same style.
  • Any stones that are also mounted
  • The markup of a particular retailer (this might include a premium that you’re willing to pay for a shop with a stellar reputation for quality).
  • The warranties, cleanings, resizing, and other non-tangible value included by a retailer
  • Taxes paid on the item

If you want to purchase gold at a discount (less than retail prices), purchasing used rings private-party may be your best bet. There are often people getting out of relationships that may be willing to sell an engagement ring or wedding ring, for example, at a real discount. Why? Because they may need the cash quickly, because pawn shops are offering so little, or because they want to unload the jewelry right away for emotional reasons.

If you buy this way, please exercise extreme caution by testing the pieces. We’ll briefly explain the process below.

18k Gold vs 24k Gold

24 karat gold is the purest form of gold. That certainly comes with pros AND cons. Some quick reference information follows.

18K Gold
24K Gold
Purity:18 Parts Gold + 6 Parts Non-Gold (75% Pure)24 Parts Gold + 0 Parts Non-Gold (100% Pure)
Hardness:Significantly harderSoft/easily scratched.

18k Gold vs 14k Gold

How will an 18 karat gold ring be different than a similar ring made out of 14k gold? Here again, the 18k gold ring will have some pros and cons when compared with the other. The same would obviously also be true of an 18 karat gold necklace and other types of jewelry.

18K Gold
14K Gold
Purity:18 Parts Gold + 6 Parts Non-Gold (75% Pure)14 Parts Gold + 10 Parts Non-Gold (58.3% Pure)
Hardness:Softer (more likely to scratch)Harder (less likely to scratch)

Does 18k Gold Tarnish?

Gold isn’t a reactive metal. Pure gold won’t tarnish. 18k gold does have some non-gold metals mixed in. The non-gold metals could open the door to a little tarnish over time—but it isn’t likely or common. If tarnish does appear at some point, you can remove it with a good cleaning.

Will 18k Gold Turn Your Finger Green?

The same way that it’s possible, but unlikely, for 18k gold to tarnish, it’s also possible, but unlikely, that it will leave a green mark on your finger. Why will 18k gold turn skin green for some but not others?

All gold other than 24k will have non-gold metals mixed in to add hardness. The most common metal additive is Copper. Copper is known to tarnish. Jewelry items with lower purity have high Copper contributions, and a much greater chance of oxidation and tarnish.

Because of that, 18 karat gold is far less likely to oxidize or leave a mark on your finger than 10k or 14k gold for example. Despite the high level of purity, some people still get green or black marks on their skin when they wear 18k jewelry. The cause often comes down to one of the following issues.

  • Hormone levels
  • How sweaty your hands are
  • Skin composition. The PH of your skin and sweat can influence marking
  • Medications that you’re taking and the way they impact your body
  • Lotions and hand creams that you use

If you notice marks being left on your fingers, you may want to try changing any lotions or skin creams that you might be using to see if things change. You can also create a clear barrier on the inside of your ring with clear fingernail polish. That coating should help to stop the marks on your skin until the barrier wears through. You’ll need to reapply the clear nail polish every few weeks to keep the coating intact.

Will 18k Gold Fade?

Solid 18k gold will not fade. The color remains consistent over time. It’s possible, however, for some fading to occur when gold is plated over some non-gold base metal. Fading doesn’t always happen with plated metals, and the fading process would take time and may not even be noticeable in many cases.

Will 18k Gold Rust?

Gold is incredibly non-reactive. It’s not prone to corrosion. The type and quantity of non-gold metals added to 18k gold don’t make the mixture susceptible to rust. Because of this, rust isn’t a form of metal corrosion that you’ll have to worry about with 18k gold jewelry.

Can You Wear 18k Gold in the Shower?

It’s not a good idea to wear gold jewelry of any kind in the shower. Your jewelry won’t immediately fall apart if you do. The damage takes time and won’t be immediately apparent. Chlorine and gold aren’t friendly with each other. It can do microscopic damage to gold (especially the prongs that hold center stones in place) that can eventually lead to bending or breakage.

Beyond those risks, hard water and soaps can build up and dull the appearance of your gold jewelry. My wife has worn her gold ring in the shower for years. On the surface, the ring looked undamaged, but it was weakened over time by chemical reactions, and the prongs eventually bent. We, fortunately, noticed the issue before the diamond fell out and got lost, but that’s a very real risk with this type of damage.

What’s 18k Gold Plated?

Gold plating is simply a layer of gold over a base metal that consists of something other than gold. Brass, for example, could be covered (or plated) with gold for example. The finished product would look identical to a solid gold piece from the outside. The main difference is durability. A solid gold piece could last a lifetime, while a plated piece might last weeks, months, or years.

The term plated is short for ‘Electroplated.’ Electroplating is the process that’s used to apply the gold over the base metal. Jewelry made from a non-gold base metal is submerged in a tank of special solution. A chunk of 18k gold is submerged in the same tank and solution. An electric current is then run through the solution in the tank.

The current causes gold atoms to separate from the gold chunk and settle on the base metal, creating a gold coating. The thickness of the layer will depend on the amount of time that the base metal is left in the tank.

Sometimes plated pieces only contain the thinnest of coatings. They look nice when they’re brand new, but can wear through and look terrible within days. Other pieces have thick coatings that may last for years before needing to be replated.

The main benefit of 18k gold plated jewelry, is that it allows you access to jewelry designs you wouldn’t normally be able to afford—if they were made of solid gold.

What is 18k Gold Vermeil?

Gold Vermeil (pronounced ver-MAY) is a thicker coating of 18k gold over a Sterling Silver base metal. In order to legally use the term Gold Vermeil, jewelry MUST have a layer of gold that’s AT LEAST 2.5 microns thick. The base metal also HAS TO BE Sterling Silver.

If any of those requirements aren’t met, the piece can’t be marketed at Gold Vermeil. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is the government agency that polices and enforces the proper use of these terms.

Gold Vermeil essentially allows you to get the look of 18 karat gold on a Sterling Silver budget! While Gold Vermeil jewelry will likely cost more than a similar piece of Sterling Silver jewelry, the cost often isn’t much higher.

What is 18k Gold Filled?

The name ‘Gold Filled’ can be misleading at first glance. It sounds like gold would occupy the inside of a Gold Filled piece of jewelry, right? In reality, Gold Filled jewelry consists of a thick layer of gold on top of a non-gold base metal. The generous application of gold is probably the biggest distinguishing characteristic of Gold Filled jewelry.

For Gold filled items, at least 5% of the total weight of the piece MUST consist of gold. That means that if you have a gold chain that weighs 40 grams, it has to contain at least 2 grams of gold. The gold applied to Gold-Filled jewelry also has to be permanently bonded to the base metal (not just plated on top).

18k Gold filled jewelry can be super durable, but still significantly less expensive than solid 18k gold jewelry. It’s very common for the layer on Gold Filled jewelry to last for decades. It’s even possible for the layer to last through multiple generations if it’s not mistreated.

Spotting Fake 18k Gold Jewelry

There’s nothing wrong with buying 18k Gold Vermeil or 18k Gold Filled jewelry if that’s all your budget will allow for, or it meets your need. There IS a problem with paying for solid gold but getting gold plated jewelry though. It happens!

I just came across an article tonight about a man in my community that was just arrested for selling fake 1 ounce gold bars. One many bought at least 10 at $1,000 each before discovering that they weren’t real when he tried to resell them. When the guy was arrested, they searched his car and found more “gold” bars, “gold” rings, and diamond (which were also fake, I’m sure).

The story is a good reminder of how important it is to stay vigilant and verify that you got what you paid for (real gold). There are several easy ways to test your gold.

  • The ‘Sniff Test’: If an item is being sold too inexpensively, it should be a warning sign. The con man that I mentioned above was selling his ‘gold’ bars for $1000, when they’re easily worth $1,500 for example.
  • The Law of Attraction: Many metals are attracted to magnets, but gold isn’t one of them. If you hold a piece of jewelry up to a magnet and it clings to the magnet, it likely has another base metal beneath its surface.
  • The Acid Test: You can purchase special 18 karat gold acid (a Nitric Acid) that’s intended for testing purposes. If you place a drop of the acid on the surface of gold that isn’t 18k, or on a non-gold metal, it will begin bubbling and changing color. If it sits and does nothing at all, it indicates that you’re dealing with real 18k gold.

**Important Disclaimer** If you place 18k acid on the surface of something like an 18k Gold Filled ring, it may falsely lead you to believe the pieces consist of solid 18k gold. That’s because the gold layer is so thick. You may need to find a worn area on the jewelry, or file it down a bit to get the acid deeper in the item (closer to a possible base metal.

In Summary:

18k gold is a wonderful choice for those that want high-purity gold that’s also more durable than absolutely pure gold would be. This gold is typically a good option for people with sensitive skin that reacts when it comes in contact with less pure gold mixtures like 10k.

When you’re looking at Rose Gold, 18k Rose Gold has lighter coloring than 10k or 14k. Because 18k has more yellow gold and less copper, it takes on a light pink hue. 10k gold has less yellow gold and more copper, so it generally has a much redder, Copper-like, appearance.

18k strikes the perfect balance between cost, purity, durability, and appearance for many jewelry shoppers.

Related Posts:

What is 14K Gold Jewelry? 4 Reasons it’s BETTER Than 24K!

What Is the Difference Between Gold Vermeil & Gold Plating?

What Is Rose Gold? The Ultimate Guide for This Amazing Metal



The Pros and Cons of Rose Gold Engagement Rings

The Pros and Cons of Rose Gold Engagement Rings

Rose Gold is an incredibly popular option among ‘brides and grooms to be’ for their engagement rings and wedding bands. In an effort to make better shopping decisions, many go online looking for answers to the following question …

What are the pros and cons of Rose Gold Engagement Rings?

The Pros of Rose Gold:

  • Complementary of Many Skin Tones
  • Often More Affordable
  • Low Maintenance
  • More Durable
  • Vintage Look
  • More Distinctive
  • Complements Stones Like Morganite
  • Used By Both Men and Women

The Cons of Rose Gold:

  • Limited Selection
  • Repairs Can Be More Difficult
  • Not Hypoallergenic
  • Risk of Color Clash

Before diving into deeper detail on the pros and cons listed above, I feel like I should quickly cover some basics. I’ll explain how Rose Gold is made, and what the various purity options are. Once you have that foundational understanding, that full list of benefits and drawbacks will should a lot more sense.

Understanding Rose Gold

Rose Gold, which is sometimes also referred to as Pink Gold or Red Gold, is a manufactured metal. There are no gold mines where Rose Gold or White Gold are mined from the earth. All gold starts out as yellow gold.

Pure gold is a very soft metal. How soft? Have you ever seen someone bite a gold coin and then look at it to see if it’s real? That’s something you’ve probably seen on television a time or two. It’s a real thing! Pure gold is so soft that biting it with your teeth can easily leave imprints in the metal. Lots of other things in your everyday environment are also hard enough to scrape and scar pure gold.

To protect it, harder metals can be added to a mixture along with yellow gold. Various ratios of gold to these other metal alloys can produce gold of various hardness and colors.

Copper is a common ingredient in gold that’s less than 24k. In fact, it’s almost always the second highest ingredient (after yellow gold). Rose Gold has a higher percentage of its metal mixture comprised of Copper. This is the reason that Copper takes on a pinkish or reddish tone. The shade depends on the percentage of the mixture that’s made up of Copper.

When more Copper is added, the mixture becomes harder and redder. The less Copper that’s added, the softer and pinker the mixture becomes.

24k (or 24 karat) gold is pure gold—with NO other metals mixed in. It’s ALWAYS yellow gold. Any number that’s smaller than 24 (like you’ll see with 18k, 14k, 12k, or 10k), will have some amount of other non-gold metals mixed in. The LOWER the number before the ‘k,’ the HIGHER the percentage of non-gold metals that were added to the mixture.

12 karat (12k) gold, for example, is 50% yellow gold and 50% other metal additives. 18k is 75% yellow gold and 25% other metals

This information is important to understand because you’ll have several different purity options to choose from as you shop and compare rings. Each of those different purities will have an impact on the hardness AND COLOR of your Rose Gold.

Now that you have some of the basics down, let’s go ahead and look at some of the detail behind the list that I shared earlier. We’ll touch on the positive aspects first.

The Pros of Rose Gold:

The benefits of Rose Gold could include all of the following. The importance and value of each of the following issues will be higher or lower for each individual, depending on their needs and preferences.

Complementary of Many Skin Tones

Rose Gold has a warm coloring. Many people love the way rose gold compliments the tone of their skin. That’s true for people with a wide variety of skin tones. It’s not the kind of thing that only looks good against one very particular type of skin tone.

Again, the color of Rose Gold varies depending on how pure the gold is. 18k gold is more pure, so it will have a pink tint to it. 10k Rose Gold is much less pure. It has more Copper added, making it redder, and more copper-like in appearance.

Often More Affordable

While Rose Gold costs a lot more than options like Sterling Silver or Stainless Steel, it is less expensive than other common alternatives—like Platinum. Because Rose Gold has other non-gold metals (like Copper) mixed in, it’s cheaper to produce than 24k yellow gold.

With gold trading at about $1,500/ounce, the substitution of Copper for some of the gold in the Rose Gold alloy can lead to some SERIOUS savings!

Low Maintenance

Unlike White Gold, Rose Gold doesn’t have any surface plating. It has the same metal mixture all the way through the ring. Plating can wear through pretty quickly, especially when there isn’t a very thick layer applied. When plating wears through, a jeweler has to apply it, which comes at a cost.

Since Rose Gold has no plating, it won’t need to have a surface layer reapplied periodically. That makes it a much more durable kind of ring to own for the long term!

More Durable

Hardness means scratch resistance. Who wants to wear a scratched up engagement ring or wedding band…especially one you paid a lot of money for? Because Rose Gold contains such a high percentage of Copper, it tends to be harder than other gold options.

As I mentioned earlier darker colored Rose Gold rings, the ones that have a reddish look to them, are harder than the ones that have a light pink tone. The darker ones contain a higher percentage of Copper…so they’re harder and more scratch-resistant.

Again, those darker Rose Gold rings will often be 10k gold. 14k will be a little lighter, and 18k will be lighter still. Here’s a 14k Rose Gold and Diamond engagement ring that balances value and durability beautifully.

Vintage Look

Darker Rose Gold can have a cool vintage kind of look to it. That’s brought out even more if oxidation happens in the ring because of the high Copper content. Some people love the look…and even TRY to speed the process of developing that look and style for their Rose Gold ring and jewelry.

More Distinctive

Rose Gold rings are less common than Yellow or White Gold rings. That can help a Rose Gold engagement ring to feel all the more distinctive and unique. In addition, Rose Gold offers an incredibly wide range of color options. Because color is influenced by the type and quantity of non-gold metals that get mixed in, Rose Gold’s coloring can vary a lot from one manufacturer to another.

That color variation makes a Rose Gold ring much more unique. While there are others wearing Rose Gold rings, it’s unlikely that the shade of their ring will exactly match yours in most cases.

Complements Stones Like Morganite

The warm pinkish tone of Rose Gold can make Morganite look AMAZING! Morganite has coloring that typically involves shades of pink and peach. When the Morganite and Rose Gold is paired with tiny diamonds, set as accent stones or a halo, the Rose Gold and Morganite pairing pops even more! Here’s a great example of this type of ring. Notice how the Morganite and the Rose Gold complement each other so well!

Morganite is far from the ONLY kind of stone that Rose Gold can look incredible with, but it’s definitely one of my favorite pairings!

Rose Gold and Morganite Engagement Ring with Halo

Used By Both Men and Women

Pink isn’t JUST for the ladies. It’s not uncommon to see a man rocking a pink shirt or a pink tie these days.

Similarly, men have been adopting Rose Gold in record numbers. There have been LOTS of articles in the media about men rushing out to grab Rose Gold Beats Headphones or a Rose Gold iPhone for example. Gadget manufacturers struggle to keep up with demand from both their male and female customers!

Watches and wedding bands are other areas where many men are embracing Rose Gold. Some couples even decide to get coordinating Rose Gold rings so they match!

The Cons of Rose Gold:

It can’t ALL be good news with Rose Gold, can it? No, as with anything, there are a few areas that may be considered drawbacks for some. I’ll outline the common ones below.

Limited Selection

Jewelers offer more ring designs in Yellow Gold or White Gold. That means that you could stumble upon the perfect ring design, and then find that it isn’t even offered in Rose Gold.

There are still LOTS of rings available in Rose Gold…it’s just not EVERY ring.

Repairs Can Be More Difficult

You may have a harder time finding a jeweler to do resizing and repairs for your Rose Gold Ring. Working on a Rose Gold ring means trying to match the original metal color. It’s tough to get that exactly right! Because of that difficulty, some jewelers won’t even try.

While some jewelers turn away work on Rose Gold rings, others gladly welcome it! There are many jewelers that do a great deal of work with Rose Gold. If you don’t have a jeweler like that in your area, you can always mail your ring to a jeweler located in another city or state.

There are very reputable, and qualified, jewelers online that you can get help from if needed. Check their feedback on Google, and look them up with the BBB, to ensure they don’t have any disturbing complaints from past clients.

There really are some quality options out there. Finding one online shouldn’t be difficult.

Not Hypoallergenic

Some people have allergic reactions when their skin comes in contact with certain metals. Allergies to Nickel seem most common. While Rose Gold generally doesn’t contain Nickel, it DOES contain metals other than just yellow gold.

Because of this, people with sensitivity to the metals that are mixed in, like Copper, for example, could have skin reactions when they wear it. The less pure the Rose Gold is, the more likely it is to cause problems for those with sensitive skin. The majority of the gold mixture for 10k gold is made up of non-gold metals, so it’s the most likely, of the common Rose Gold options, to trigger a reaction. 14k is a level of purity that seems to be safe for most people with mild sensitivity. 18k is an even safer bet. There are those with extreme sensitivity that can’t wear Rose Gold at all though.

Risk of Color Clash

When you pair gems like Aquamarine or Orange Tourmaline with Rose Gold, the colors can easily clash. A reddish or pinkish gold just won’t match every possible center stone. That’s not a big deal, but it’s something you need to be conscious of—especially if you’re ordering a custom ring online.

Yellow gold can also clash with certain colorful gems. White gold, on the other hand, is such a neutral background, that it can really be worn with any kind of center stone without concern of color conflict.


Rose Gold is a beautiful metal. It’s not without its limitations and challenges, but all things considered, it can be a great overall value for engagement rings! Eye-catching, distinctive, and durable, Rose Gold is a metal that’s certainly worth considering for your engagement ring.

Related Posts:

What Is Rose Gold? The Ultimate Guide for This Amazing Metal

What is 14K Gold Jewelry? 4 Reasons it’s BETTER Than 24K!

What is Gold Vermeil? The Ultimate Guide!


What is 14K Gold Jewelry? 4 Reasons it’s BETTER Than 24K!

What is 14K Gold Jewelry? 4 Reasons it’s BETTER Than 24K!

You’ll see lots of abbreviations as you shop for gold jewelry! 14K is one example. Understanding what it means and how it differs from 10k, 12k, 18k, and other options is important.

What is 14k gold jewelry? 14 karat gold is an alloy containing 58.3% yellow gold. The rest is made up of other metals, like Copper and Zinc. These metals make the gold harder and influence color. Higher purity gold is softer than lower purity gold, so 14k is less hard than 10k—but it’s more durable than 18k, 22k, or 24k.

Now that you understand some of the basics, I’ll share some other important information on what 14 karat jewelry is, how it’s used, and why it’s FAR BETTER than 24k gold for jewelry. Before getting to that, I need to give you a little context.

Is 14K Gold Real?

14k IS real gold, but it isn’t PURE gold. As I mentioned a little earlier, pure gold is a soft metal. It isn’t suitable for jewelry because it would get scratched and worn out too quickly. To solve this problem, other metals are added in specific ratios to increase the hardness (durability) of gold that’s used for things like jewelry.

Not being ENTIRELY gold, doesn’t it make it ‘FAKE’ gold. Again, other metals are added to make the gold mixture more practical for wearing as jewelry daily.

How 14K Gold is Made?

Gold is mined from the earth. All gold starts out as yellow gold. White Gold, Black Gold, and Rose Gold are created through metal mix-ins and/or plating. We’ll talk more about these various gold color options a little later.

Pure gold is referred to as 24 karat gold (24 parts, out of a possible 24, consist of gold). 24 karat gold has NO other metals mixed in. Gold of lesser purity (that DOES have other metals mixed in) has its purity expressed as the number of parts (out of a possible 24) that are made up of gold. 14K gold contains 14 parts pure gold and 10 parts other metals. That makes it 58.3% pure gold.

Copper is the second largest ingredient in 14k gold. Zinc is another common mix in, but it’s added in much smaller quantities.

Before digging into additional information, I should mention that there’s a difference between ‘karats’ and ‘carats’. Karats is a measure of gold purity, while Carats is a weight-based measurement used for diamonds. The term Karat is often abbreviated as either ‘k’ or ‘kt’.

How is 14K WHITE GOLD Made?

White gold is NOT a natural product. All gold starts out yellow. Various metals (like Silver and Nickel) can be added to a gold alloy to not only make it more durable, but also to lighten the color.

While the shade of white gold may be lighter than classic yellow gold, it’s still a far cry from actually being ‘white’. The color and finish that you’re used to seeing on white gold jewelry actually comes from Rhodium. Rhodium is a metal from the Platinum family (you can probably see the family resemblance).

Rhodium isn’t mixed into White Gold, it’s plated on top. The plating means that the finish is temporary. Plating eventually wears through and needs to be reapplied. Because of this, White Gold IS NOT a low maintenance ring to own.

White Gold is made in a wide variety of purities. You can get 14 karat White Gold, but you can also get in 10k, 12k, 18k etc. What you CAN’T get is 24k White Gold—it doesn’t exist! The reason that you can’t get 24 karat white gold, is that white gold always has to have other metals mixed in, so by definition, it CAN’T be pure gold (or 24k).

How is 14K ROSE GOLD Made?

Rose Gold has a unique coloring that ranges from ‘pinkish’ to ‘reddish.’ The coloring is created by adding Copper to yellow gold in various ratios. If you increase the Copper percentage of the alloy, you’ll get a metal mixture that has a more red, Copper-like, appearance.

If you dial the Copper and add more gold, you may end up with a beautiful strawberry blonde gold that has a pretty pink tint to it. As with White Gold, you can get 14 karat Rose Gold, along with a variety of other purity levels, but 24k Rose Gold doesn’t exist. Rose Gold has to be an alloy, but 24k gold is pure gold without anything mixed in—which is why you’ll never see 24k Rose Gold offered (legitimately).

If you’d like to learn more about this popular metal, read the article that I recently published covering Rose Gold in great detail.

Which Center Stones Work Well with 14K Jewelry?

14 kt gold can work well for any kind of center stone. You may choose yellow, white, or rose gold to pair with various gem colors, but you should be able to find a great match that complements the stone well. White Diamond, Moissanite, Sapphire, Morganite, and Cubic Zirconia can all look beautiful set against 14-karat gold!

4 Reasons Why 14K Gold is Better Than 24K for Jewelry

24k gold is the purest form of gold, but even affluent people often choose 14k gold over 24k for their jewelry. In this section, we’ll talk about some of the reasons why.

Here are FOUR very common reasons:

1. 14k Gold is Harder Than 24k Gold

We’ve already touched on this, but it’s a big factor! Some jewelry is more than just a fashion accessory—it has real sentimental value. For example, A jewelry fashion trend among celebrities right now, is wearing a Necklace, chain, or bracelet that has initials on it. Those initials often represent someone special to them (a partner or child for example).

14k Gold Bracelet

24k gold is soft and scratches easily. 14k is MUCH harder! When you want the beautiful look of quality gold, but also want durability, 14k becomes a wonderful option. Even people with enough money for 24k, often choose 14k because of its added durability!

2. 14k Gold Offers a Better Blend of Safety and Durability

Because 24k gold doesn’t have metals mixed in, it’s the safest type of gold for sensitive skin, but again, it’s too soft for many jewelry applications. Because of that, people with sensitivity to some metals often turn to either 14k or 18k. While both of those options DO have other metals mixed in, they aren’t a high enough percentage to cause reactions for many people.

The added advantage of choosing 14k over 18k, is that it’s more durable. Again, who doesn’t want as much durability as possible for jewelry with high sentimental value?

Be aware, that White Gold is something that people with sensitive skin often try to avoid regardless of the karat value. White Gold often has some amount of Nickel added. Nickel is the metal that most commonly gives people skin reactions. If you have metal allergies, you may want to stick with either yellow gold or rose gold.

3. White Gold and Rose Gold AREN’T Available in 24k

Jewelry shoppers are forced to consider something other than 24k gold if they ever want White Gold or Rose Gold. Rose Gold is HOT right now…just look at how rose gold iPhones have been flying off the shelf in recent years—selling like hotcakes to both men and women!

Because White gold and Rose gold aren’t available in 24k, either 14k or 18k become the most common (high-quality) options available. Here again, 14k delivers better durability—and durability is often top-of-mind when considering a new piece of jewelry with high sentimental value.

4. 14 karat Gold is Less Expensive Than 24k

Money is a central focus for some, and an afterthought for others. Both groups have compelling reasons to choose 14k gold jewelry over 24k gold jewelry. The financial savings for choosing 14k for gold jewelry comes in TWO forms.

  • A lower initial purchase price.
  • Lower lifetime costs for repair and replacement

Pure gold is great for gold bricks that sit in a safe, but not for jewelry that’s worn daily. In the course of normal activities, it would come in direct contact with hundreds of everyday objects that could easily scratch it.

The Cons of 14k Jewelry

I’ve shared some of the advantages of 14k Gold (the pros), but what are the disadvantages (the cons) of choosing this option? Remember that song from the late ‘80’s ‘Every Rose Has its Thorn’? What are the ‘thorns’ of 14k gold? Here are a couple of ‘thorns’ that critics sometimes bring up.

Used 14K Jewelry Has a Lower Resale Value

On the surface, this looks like a drawback of 14k gold, but is it really? You pay less for 14k than you would pay for 24k jewelry, so it only makes sense that they would also resell as used jewelry for a lower price as well. After all, because 14k is less pure, there’s less actual gold in it, so it’s melt value (the actual value of the gold that you can get out of it) would also be lower.

Since you paid less for the 14k when it was new, I don’t see this as a true drawback or flaw. How many people think it’s smart to pay too much tax throughout the year…just so you can get a tax refund at some point in the future? It’s much better to pay less in tax now and NOT get a refund later, right?

This issue is similar! Paying more for 24k gold, just so you can have a higher resale value in the future, doesn’t sound very smart if you ask me!

14k Jewelry isn’t as Hard as 10k

It’s true that 10k is more durable than 14k, however, less than 50% of 10k is comprised of gold. Because the ratio of alloy mix-ins is so high, it can often cause skin irritation for people with sensitivity. 14k is the hardest, and least expensive, type of gold that’s generally safe for wearers with skin sensitivity.

How to Test 14K Gold and Recognize Fake Gold

First and foremost, I recommend shopping with credible and trusted retailers. It’s safest to avoid auction sites and other sites where you can buy from unknown ‘mom and pop’ retailers. They often import their inventory without testing the shipment. They rely on claims from the manufacturer about the product they’re shipping to you. These retailers can intentionally, or unintentionally, mislead you about the jewelry that you buy from them.

We’ll talk about how to test your jewelry in a moment, to confirm the purity of your gold. Testing doesn’t take the place of normal ‘due diligence’ though, like checking the reputation of the retailer, reading reviews from past buyers, and looking for the seller’s return policy. After reviewing all that, testing your metal can provide further confirmation. The processes you’ll want to follow are outlined below.

Start by touching the side of your 14k gold ring or 14k gold chain, for example, with a powerful magnet (like a Neodymium magnet). If the ring is gold, there shouldn’t be an attraction. If the ring sticks to the magnet, it likely has a base metal under the surface layer of gold. If that wasn’t disclosed, you should return the product and get a refund immediately.

Next, you can test the gold with a drop of 14k acid. This is a testing acid that won’t have any effect on 14k gold, but it will bubble and change colors (typically turning green or black) if there’s a lower grade gold (or a fake gold) on the surface.

In Summary

14k gold jewelry is beautiful, durable, and more affordable than many other gold options. If you care for your 14 karat gold jewelly, it should last for a lifetime! Because of its relative hardness, the ability to be used for both Rose Gold and White Gold, and it’s more affordable nature, 14k is the BEST choice for many jewelry pieces.

Related Posts:

What Is Rose Gold? The Ultimate Guide for This Amazing Metal

What is Gold Vermeil? The Ultimate Guide!

What is Gold Filled Jewelry? The Look, Durability, Cost, & Care

What is Gold Filled Jewelry? The Look, Durability, Cost, & Care

What is Gold Filled Jewelry? The Look, Durability, Cost, & Care

Get the look you love, the durability you want, and the price you need with gold filled Jewelry! You can ‘have your cake, and eat it too’!

What is gold filled Jewelry? It consists of a thick layer of gold over a base metal like jeweler’s Brass. The gold is mechanically bonded to the base metal using heat and pressure. By law, the gold must represent at least 5% of the item’s total weight. This makes gold filled jewelry much more durable than other plated items.

Gold filled jewelry is PERFECT for many frugal jewelry shoppers searching for breathtaking…on a budget. The paragraphs that follow will fill you in on all the info on gold filled jewelry that you need to be aware of.

Who Buys Gold Filled Jewelry?

Gold jewelry shoppers who demand maximum value for their money often choose gold filled (GF) jewelry. Sometimes they choose it because they’re trying to make a limited jewelry budget go further than it otherwise could. Others turn to Gold Fill, even though they have enough money for solid gold because they feel their savings could be better used elsewhere.

One classic example is engaged couples shopping for wedding jewelry. They either need to stretch limited dollars, or they’d prefer to apply their savings toward paying down debt or saving for future expenses.

Gold filled jewelry brings savings without sacrifice for most people. They get the look of solid gold, great durability, and huge savings.

The terms ‘Gold Overlay,’ ‘Rolled Gold,’ ‘Rolled Gold Plate,’ ‘Rolled Gold Plated,’ and ‘Gold Filled’ are used interchangeably by some. In reality, the terms aren’t all synonymous. The first four terms can be used to describe pieces that have a thinner layer of gold applied than ‘gold filled’ would apply to. I’ll provide more detail below.

Because of the different ways that terms are sometimes presented, you have to be careful about the product titles and descriptions used by some sellers (particularly small shops, auction sites, and private sellers).

How is Gold Filled Jewelry Made?

I see the question, ‘what is gold filled jewellery?’ pretty regularly. There’s an interest, and confusion, around this type of jewelry that seems to be pretty common around the globe. Some have heard the term, but still wonder how it differs from other options like Gold Plating, Gold Vermeil, or Solid Gold. This section will make those distinctions far more clear!

Gold filled jewelry starts with a base metal like Jeweler’s Brass. That’s commonly made by combining Copper (90%) and Zinc (10%). The Brass is covered by an extremely thick sheet of gold that has a minimum purity of 10k. Again, it’s a solid sheet of gold that’s applied—not a bath of liquified gold that the base metal is dipped into.

The gold layer is then fused to the base metal through a mechanical application process involving heat and pressure. It’s a permanent bond, so the gold won’t flake or peel.

Gold filled is a regulated term that’s enforced by the Federal Trade Commission. That means that if you describe your product as “Gold Filled,” it has to meet certain specific requirements.

Those requirements include:

  • A minimum of 1/20th (5%) of the item’s total weight must be made up of gold.
  • The gold layer has to have a purity of at least 10-karat.
  • The gold layer must be fused to the base layer through a ‘mechanical process’
  • The composition of the piece needs to be ‘clearly and conspicuously’ disclosed. That means that the karat fineness of the gold needs to be stamped immediately before a term like ‘Gold Filled’ or ‘GF’ on the jewelry piece (I’ll provide examples of quality stamps below).

All of those requirements have to be met for a piece of jewelry to legally be considered gold filled. If even one of the requirements listed above isn’t met, the term can’t be used for that particular item.

If jewelry meets all the requirements listed above (except for gold thickness) and it has a gold layer that’s at least 1/40 (or 2.5%) thick—it can legally be sold as, Gold Overlay, Rolled Gold, Rolled Gold Plate, or Rolled Gold Plated. Here again, the amount of gold actually applied to the piece has to be ‘conspicuously’ displayed. For example, a stamp on the jewelry might read, “1/40th 10Kt RGP.” Again, I’ll share more on quality stamps below.

Single Clad vs Double Clad vs Wire Clad

Gold filled jewelry is made from sheets of where gold has been bonded to Brass, as described above. These sheets can come in several different finishes.

Single Clad sheets have all the gold applied to only ONE side. The other side of the sheet is exposed, Brass. Gold makes up at least 5% of the sheet’s total weight. Double Clad Sheets have gold applied to BOTH sides. These sheets also have at least 5% of their total weight in gold.

Both Single Clad and Double Clad sheets contain the same amount of gold, in total—the distribution of that gold is the only difference.

Wire Clad is a brass wire that has gold fully encasing it. The gold, again, represents at least 1/20th (5%) of the weight of the wire. The following ring was made with gold filled wire, for example.

The wire could be solid, or it could be a hollow tube (hollow copper tube with gold encasing it.

Gold Filled vs Gold Plated

Have you wondered what the difference between gold filled and gold plated jewelry is? It’s understandable to be confused because the two can look the same from the outside. In reality, there’s a significant difference between these two types of jewelry.

The biggest difference is the thickness of the gold coating that’s applied. Gold plating often applies a minuscule, almost microscopic, gold film that can often be worn through quickly. Gold filled jewelry is required to have at least 5% of its total weight in gold. That’s a SIGNIFICANT difference in thickness and durability.

Gold plated looks great when it’s new, but may not last more than a few days or weeks before the gold coating has been worn through. Gold-filled jewelry can last decades, and sometimes an entire lifetime!

The gold layer on gold filled jewelry is at least 50 times thicker (and sometimes up to 100,000 times thicker) than standard gold plating provides.

Gold Filled vs Vermeil

When you evaluate gold filled jewelry vs vermeil, you see that both provide more durability than standard gold plating offers, but the two are still very different from each other.

The term ‘gold vermeil,’ like the term ‘gold filled,’ is regulated in the United States by the FTC. Gold Vermeil is required to have at least 2.5 microns of gold on top of its base metal (which is always Sterling Silver).

As we’ve discussed, the gold requirement for GF jewelry isn’t measured in microns—it’s a weight ratio. This generally leads to a much thicker gold layer. In fact, the layer of gold on gold filled jewelry is often at least 17 times as thick. In some cases, the layer can be up to 25,000 times as thick!

That’s an enormous difference that plays a huge role in durability! Gold Vermeil is much more durable than standard gold plating, but gold filled jewelry is significantly more durable than both.

Gold Filled Jewelry Bracelet and Earrings

Gold filled jewelry is made with sheets of gold, not liquified gold that can be poured and molded. This presents limitations to the types of jewelry that can be made through the process. Jewelry made with electroplating, like Gold Vermeil, can have much more ornate and intricate designs. For more information on how the electroplating process works, check out my recent article on Gold Vermeil.

Gold Filled vs Solid Gold

What is the difference between solid gold and gold filled jewelry? Solid gold is going to be the most durable option available for jewelry that has the ‘gold’ look, but it’s also FAR more expensive than gold filled Jewelry.

When all factors have been weighed and considered, gold filled jewelry delivers incredible value! You get a substantial amount of gold, great durability, and a much lower cost. When other people look at your jewelry, they can’t visibly tell that it isn’t solid gold jewelry. You end up with the look you want at a price you can afford!

Is Gold Filled Jewelry Expensive

The cost for this jewelry is MUCH more reasonable than the cost for solid gold jewelry. The reason is simple, gold is priced based on weight. The more gold that’s used in a particular piece of jewelry, the more expensive it will be. Since GF pieces only need to have 5% of their total weight in gold content, that means that they can use low-cost Jeweler’s Brass for the other 95%. That provides ENORMOUS cost savings!

Imagine, If gold costs $48 per gram, and you have your eye on a piece of jewelry that weighs 50 grams. The cost for the gold portion when the item is made of solid gold would be $2,400. The GF version would only use 2.5 grams of gold, along with 45 grams of brass. The gold for this second piece would only cost $120. In this example, you end up saving $2280 (95%) on the cost of gold (which would have been buried in the middle where no one could see it anyway)! That’s a HUGE SAVINGS on a durable item that looks identical!

This is a great example of quality gold filled chains (necklaces) that are dramatically less expensive than identical looking solid gold versions would be.

Is Gold Filled Jewelry Worth Anything?

Gold filled jewelry does have intrinsic value (melt value), but how much is gold filled jewelry worth? The answer depends on the specifics of your item. The Hallmark provides information like the percentage of the item’s weight that is made up of gold (expressed as a fraction). It also lists the karat value of that gold (most is 12k or 14k). Once you have those two pieces of information and the spot value of gold in grams, the gold value of your jewelry can be easily calculated.

Pawnshops and refineries are happy to purchase a gold filled chain or other similar jewelry. They can quickly weigh your item and then tell you what they’re able to pay for the piece.

In my experience, it’s going to be a little less than the spot value. How much less depends on who you take the jewelry to. If you want to maximize the sale price, visit multiple places and compare what they’re willing to pay before deciding on who you’ll sell to. If you have a metal refinery in your area, it would be helpful to visit them in addition to the pawnshop.

You also have to option of selling ‘private party’ to someone that loves gold jewelry and wants to use your item as jewelry. You could consider selling through a local classified ad site (like or, or online through a platform like eBay.

How to Identify Gold Filled Jewelry

From the outside, gold-filled jewelry looks identical to solid gold jewelry. The best way to identify gold-filled jewelry is through quality stamps or hallmarks. They’re placed in a spot that it’s visible to the people that see you wearing your jewelry. Rings will have the stamp on the inside of the band. Necklaces and bracelets often have the stamp on the backside of the clasp and on the metal beside the clasp. Notice the print on the following clasp that reads 14/20 (meaning that the clasp is covered in 14k gold comprising 1/20th of its weight).

I’ll share specific information on quality stamps and some examples below.

Is Gold Filled Jewelry Fake?

Some might refer to GF jewelry as ‘fake’, but is it? These pieces contain a thick layer of REAL gold with at least 10k purity. More often, GF jewelry will contain 12k or 14k gold. While it’s true that the center of the jewelry item isn’t comprised of solid gold, that doesn’t make the jewelry ‘fake.’

It’s often interesting for those that are critical of gold filled jewelry to ponder the question, Is 14k or 22k gold ‘fake’?

Gold is typically an alloy that’s comprised of gold and other metals. For example, 22k isn’t ALL gold. 14k gold is only 58.3% gold. The other 41.7% is made up of metals like Copper and Zinc that add hardness and influence color. 10k gold is 41.6% gold (it’s MOSTLY other metals).

Non-Gold metals are an important and legitimate part of gold jewelry.

Is Gold Filled Fine Jewelry?

Gold filled jewelry isn’t considered ‘fine jewelry’—but who honestly cares? The impact of that classification is more psychological than anything else. No one can tell the difference between GF Jewelry and solid gold jewelry based on appearance. Gold filled is also durable and functional, so what’s the actual implication of not being considered ‘fine jewelry’? Would you ever go around announcing to friends that your gold jewelry is (or isn’t) ‘fine jewelry’? Doubtful! If not, then the classification is truly meaningless for most people.

So, if gold filled jewelry isn’t considered ‘Fine Jewelry,’ what IS it considered? It’s classified, along with Gold Vermeil, as ‘Fashion Jewelry’ or ‘Costume Jewelry.’ Gold Snobs that look down on everything other than solid gold love to use the term ‘Costume Jewelry’ the most.

Some use the term ‘Semi-fine’ jewelry to classify gold filled pieces. They use the term as a middle ground between ‘Fine Jewelry’ and ‘Costume Jewelry’, but that it’s not an officially recognized category.

What is Yellow Gold Filled Jewelry?

Yellow gold filled jewelry is classic, timeless, styling. It utilizes the process described throughout this article and can be made with 10-karat gold or better. Again, 12-karat and 14-karat are most common for this jewelry.

What is Rose Gold Filled Jewelry?

Rose Gold is like yellow gold, but the has common metal additives mixed in different ratios. Rose gold is heavy on the Copper content, for example, which is what gives it the beautiful rosy coloring that it’s famous for.

Rose Gold Filled Jewelry Watch

What is Black Gold Filled Jewelry?

Black gold is a bit of an illusion—just like White Gold. There’s no such thing as either white or black gold in nature. Yellow gold can be made lighter or darker by mixing other metals into it. Metals like Cobalt can darken a gold mixture. Black Rhodium can also be used to plate gold jewelry and give it the ‘black gold’ look.

A gold filled item is plated in a black gold alloy or Black Rhodium to change the appearance of its surface. As with all plated jewelry, the coating will need to be reapplied as it wears through.

What is White Gold Filled Jewelry

Like Black Gold, White Gold rings are dependant on plating to give them their expected appearance. It’s Rhodium plating that makes White Gold jewelry look the way it does. The gold underneath the plating looks yellowish. If you have a White Gold Filled piece of jewelry, you’ll need to have it re-plated with additional Rhodium occasionally.

Is Gold Filled Jewelry Hypoallergenic?

The answer is ‘yes’ AND ‘no.’ High purity gold (18k and above) is typically considered hypoallergenic—so the surface of the jewelry would qualify as long as the gold purity is high enough. Brass is at the core of most gold filled jewelry It isn’t a hypoallergenic metal.

Based on all that, most probably could wear this jewelry without any issues, as long as the gold layer continues to encapsulate the brass well. If the gold layer ever wears too thin, over time, people with sensitive skin could start to experience reactions from contact with the base metal.

How is Gold Filled Jewelry Marked?

Gold filled jewelry hallmarks are like industry shorthand that tells you about the composition of your jewelry. These markings are also referred to as Quality Stamps. They’re required by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) for jewelry sold as Gold Filled, Rolled Gold, or Gold Overlay in the United States. Manufacturers are required to include some very specific information in these stamps. We’ll talk more about those elements in a moment.

The FTC protects consumers by ensuring that manufacturers and retailers are representing their products accurately.

Certain information is required to be disclosed, including:

  • Gold quality (in karats)
  • The ratio of gold used in the piece
  • The term that best describes the jewelry item

All of this information needs to be communicated ‘clearly and conspicuously,’ meaning that there can’t be any fine print or misleading presentation of information. The information should all be printed in the same font, and in the same area.

For example, manufacturers couldn’t legally shorten the stamp on gold filled jewelry to just read ‘Gold’ … or even something like 12k or 14k. All of those examples could mislead buyers into thinking that the jewelry being offered is made of solid gold.

Stamps are often arranged so the purity of the gold (the karatage) is printed first. Immediately following that number is a forward slash (the “/” symbol), and a number to reflect the ratio of the item’s weight that’s made up of gold. For example, let’s say we have a gold filled bracelet that’s made of 14 karat gold. The gold comprises 1/20th (5%) of the piece. Based on all that, the stamp could be laid out like any of the following examples.

  • 1/20th 14K GOLD FILLED
  • 1/20 14KT GOLD-FILLED
  • 1/10 22K GF
  • 14/20 GF

Various combinations of those examples could also work.

When less than 1/20th of the item’s weight is made up of gold (but NOT less than 1/40th of the total weight), it may be referred to as Rolled Gold Plated (or Rolled Gold). In that case, the term can be used for the stamp, along with disclosure regarding how much of the total weight is made up of gold. Any of the following stamps could be used, for example.

  • 1/30th 14K RGP
  • 1/40 14K Gold Overlay
  • 1/40 14 Kt Rolled Gold Plate

For example, you can put a “th” after the weight ratio, or not. Similarly, you can abbreviate karat with a ‘K’ or a ‘Kt’. Here again, I tried to show several variations that you could mix and match with as needed to align with your personal preferences.

How to Test Gold Filled Jewelry

When you test gold filled jewelry, you’re looking for a couple of primary checking to see if the gold purity is what it’s supposed to be. Unfortunately, it’s difficult to differentiate gold filled jewelry from solid gold jewelry without damaging the item. I’ll explain more about why that is in a moment.

Will gold filled jewelry pass an acid test? Yes, gold filled jewelry will often pass a simple surface-level acid test. To acid test gold, you apply an acid that matches the gold purity that you expect from a particular piece of jewelry. The color and activity in the acid will tell you things about the material you’re testing. If the acid drop turns colors or starts bubbling, you’re dealing with something other than the kind of gold you were looking for.

The 14k gold acid is the only that’s most often needed with gold filled jewelry. The acid test can help you confirm the purity of the gold in your jewelry. What it CAN’T always do, is tell you that the piece isn’t solid gold. The gold layer on GF jewelry is very thick, so there’s often no visible reaction that would alert you to the presence of a non-gold metal beneath it. You would need to get near the base metal somehow and apply the acid in that area to have the potential for a better outcome.

On a used piece of jewelry, you can sometimes look for worn points that might be more effective points to test. Otherwise, you would have to use a file or pocket knife to open, or wear down, the surface so you can apply acid on, or close to, a potential base metal.

Without scratching or filing the gold surface, it’s also difficult to gauge the thickness of the gold layer. Your only information on thickness is the hallmark imprint on the piece of jewelry.

Can gold filled jewelry be magnetic? No, again Brass is almost always the base metal for gold filled jewelry. It’s not a magnetic metal.

Can the Hallmark Stamp on Jewelry be Trusted?

Stamps are typically accurate. Manufacturers face prosecution for falsifying hallmarks. In spite of this, criminals will continue to counterfeit and mislead consumers.

Because it’s difficult to verify EVERY detail of the Hallmark on your own, I’d recommend ONLY buying from sources and retailers that you trust. I would never buy gold filled jewelry from one of the importing sites that allows you to buy jewelry directly from China. There are quality manufacturers there and there are manufacturers that may cut corners or mislabel. It’s not worth rolling the dice.

I also wouldn’t purchase off an auction site. These sellers are so small, that they can fly under the radar of the FTC. They also use terms like Gold Filled, Gold Overlay, and Rolled Gold when they don’t apply to attract buyers looking for that keyword. You might get what you expected, but the chances of getting ripped off are high.

I’ve purchased misrepresented jewelry directly from manufacturers in China. I’ve unknowingly purchased fraudulent items through auctions sites in the past as well. You may not find out that you’ve been lied to for several months, making it even harder to seek any kind of recourse. By that point, you may have already left positive feedback for the seller, or the window for leaving feedback has completely closed.

Can Gold Filled Rings be Resized?

It’s possible to resize a gold filled Ring, but it isn’t always easy to find someone willing to take that on—and the cost might make it impractical. You would be better off buying a similar gold filled ring in a larger or smaller size.

The other issue is how you give the ring a uniform gold appearance after the adjustment. I’ll address how that’s done in the next section.

Can Gold Filled Jewelry be Repaired?

Gold filled jewelry can be repaired, but not with the exact same gold filled finish. The piece will likely need to be plated afterward to give it a uniform appearance. If the item is electroplated following a repair, it may be worth paying extra to have an especially thick coating applied to create a more durable finish.

If you have any trouble finding a Jeweler in your area that’s able to repair your jewelry, you may want to ship your GF item to a jeweler in another area that is accustomed to the work and capable of doing what you need. A few search engine queries should help you to find some good prospects.

How Durable is Gold Filled Jewelry?

Durability is an important consideration for any jewelry. So, how does gold filled jewelry wear? Because the gold layer is so thick, it’s jewelry that should last for years. It can sometimes last decades. A critical factor in how long any jewelry lasts, is how it’s used. Jewelry that’s worn all day, every day, won’t last as long as jewelry that’s worn for a day or two every few weeks.

Jewelry that’s removed before showering and washing hands will likely last longer than jewelry that isn’t. Pieces with harder gold will, obviously, outlast pieces that are coated with softer gold. The lower the karat grade of the gold, the harder it is. This means that 10k gold is harder than 18k for example. It’s important to understand this when shopping for jewelry. If you want to maximize durability, minimize the purity of the gold (10k).

To recap, Is gold filled jewelry durable? Yes, it has the potential to be. How long does gold filled jewelry last? That depends on the purity of the gold layer and how the piece is worn and cared for.

Can You Shower with Gold Filled Jewelry?

Gold filled jewelry generally isn’t affected by water any differently than solid gold jewelry is. Having said that, you really should remove gold jewelry before showering. Again, that’s even true of solid gold.

Tap water contains Chlorine. Chlorine can damage gold over time. It’s not something that’s immediately visible to the naked eye—it’s microscopic and gradual. That deterioration can lead to weakened gold that’s more prone to breaking. Rings that have stones mounted are especially vulnerable because gold prongs can get weak and break as damage progresses. Once prongs start bending and breaking, you’re in danger of losing your center stone.

Most water also contains dissolved minerals, often referred to as ‘hard water’. These minerals that can dull the appearance of your jewelry, and in some cases harm the surface in various ways.

Water itself is also effective at dissolving things. It’s so effective that it’s referred to as ‘The Universal Solvent’. Water carved out the Grand Canyon! Having shower water hit and washing over your Gold jewelry isn’t a great idea. It won’t dissolve before your eyes, but could wear down over time. The shower also tends to put your jewelry in contact with soap, shampoo, & conditioner. These products may cause buildup on the surface of your jewelry and could contain agents that are too harsh.

What about washing hands, swimming, or rain? Can gold filled jewelry get wet? GF isn’t overly sensitive to water in general, but both swimming and handwashing carry many of the same dangers as showering with gold jewelry on. If you forget to take your jewelry off once or twice, it isn’t a huge deal—just try not to make a habit of it. Dry the piece off completely as soon as possible.

Here’s an example fo a really cool looking gold filled ring that would be difficult to fully dry after washing your hands without the use of a hand dryer or hairdryer.

Will Gold Filled Jewelry Tarnish

Tarnish is a form of corrosion that causes portions of jewelry to turn green or black. Fortunately, gold filled jewelry is extremely unlikely to tarnish—it would take a very unusual set of circumstances. Direct exposure to harsh chemicals or heavy Sulfide fumes, for example, might cause some surface blackening. That’s not something that very many people will experience.

How to Keep Gold Filled Jewelry From Tarnishing

Remove your jewelry before using chemical agents. You might also want to leave your gold filled jewelry behind the next time you head to a Nail Salon. They’re known to have some pretty serious fumes. The sulfides that can lead to surface blackening have encountered at salons as well.

Be sure to follow the jewelry cleaning instructions that I’ll outline below. You’ll want to avoid harsher chemical-based products that could damage your gold.

Will Gold Filled Jewelry Fade?

The beautiful gold coloring of gold filled jewelry will not fade as time passes. In this regard, it looks and acts exactly like solid gold.

How to Clean Gold Filled Jewelry

Cleaning will help to protect and prolong the life of your jewelry—as long as it’s done properly. Improper cleaning can have the opposite kind of impact. This jewelry isn’t as delicate as pieces with standard gold plating, but it’s still important to clean very carefully. Scratches detract from the look and life of the item, so we want to avoid creating scratches as we clean our GF Jewelry.

It’s best to use a clean soft cloth, a microfiber cloth, or a simple cotton ball to gently wipe the gold as needed. In many cases, no liquid is even needed for a quick cleaning. If you want to use liquid, warm water and a few drops of mild dish soap, like Dawn, is all you need. No need to scrub or apply much pressure. To start, dip your cloth or cotton ball into the soapy water and then carefully wipe the jewelry down. Use lone up and down motions rather than a circular or oval pattern with your wiping.

When you’re done with washing, dip your cloth in clean water and again wipe the surface of the jewelry to rinse. Finish by dabbing with a soft towel until dry, you can also use a hairdryer on a ‘cool’ setting to dry hard-to-reach areas of your jewelry.

Can Gold Filled Jewelry be Replated?

It can be plated with gold—but the gold that was mechanically applied (bonded) previously can’t be removed and replaced. If a significant jewelry repair is made that requires some cutting or scarring of the ring’s surface, gold plating can restore the uniform appearance of the surface. Remember, that with electroplating, more time in the tank leads to a thicker coating. You can let your jeweler know how thick you want the coating to be, and they’ll let you know what your desired thickness will cost.

How Should Gold-Filled Jewelry be Stored?

When you’re not wearing your jewelry, there are some important precautions that you can take to help protect it. First off, keeping it in a jewelry box is a good idea. Jewelry boxes help you not to misplace the item—forgetting where you left it. They also have a soft lining that helps prevent scratching.

You need to be careful with storing multiple pieces of jewelry in the same space. You should ensure they’re separated from each other so they don’t touch. A diamond or sapphire, for example, from a neighboring ring could easily scratch gold if it came in direct contact with it.

For added protection, you can wrap jewelry items in layers of toilet paper, or place them in their own Ziploc bag. This can create an extra buffer between various pieces of jewelry before you store them.

In Summary

Gold filled jewelry offers a wonderful opportunity for people to get gold on a tight budget. It offers most of the benefits of solid gold for a small fraction of the cost. Some people would never dream of buying anything but solid gold—and that’s alright! But I’ve heard from people that have owned gold filled jewelry for 15+ years that tell me it STILL looks like new and has the appearance of solid gold. They love their gold filled jewelry, and continue to buy more! It’s an avenue worth exploring for your next piece of gold jewelry!

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