Red Gold vs Rose Gold vs Pink Gold – Differences Explained
Rose gold, red gold, and pink gold are made from a gold and copper alloy.
Since copper has a bold pinkish-orange color, adding this alloy to gold gives the gold a beautiful pinkish gold color.
18K rose gold, 18K red gold, and 18K pink gold contain 75% gold. 14K rose gold, 14K red gold, and 14K pink gold contain 58% gold. The remaining percentage is made up of copper or copper and silver. The varying percentage of copper used determines the color of the gold. The more copper that is used, the stronger the rose color. Pink gold uses the least amount of copper, followed by rose gold, and red gold has the highest copper content.
There is no such thing as pure rose gold, since rose gold is an alloy of gold and copper.
18K Red Gold | 75% gold | 25% copper | 0% silver
18K Rose Gold | 75% gold | 22.5% copper | 2.75% silver
18K Pink Gold | 75% gold | 20% copper | 5% silver
How is Rose Gold, Red Gold and Pink Gold Made?
Gold itself is a yellow metallic element but, in its pure form, it is too soft to be used for general jewellery purposes, although there are some cultures which do wear pure gold jewellery, it would need to be heavily made and carefully used. The yellow colour of gold is caused by gold absorbing violet and blue light, but reflecting yellow and red light.
It is very simple to produce a gold alloy with a reddish colouration. All that is needed is to increase the proportion of copper in the mixture. To maintain the correct proportion of gold in the alloy, this usually means decreasing the silver content. In the past, many goldsmiths have reduced the silver content and increased the copper content to save cost, as copper is less expensive than silver.
Red Gold vs Rose Gold vs Pink Gold
So what is the difference between red gold, rose gold, and pink gold?
Only the name.
All three are basically the same, although "rose" gold has a certain romantic marketing ring to it! Many goldsmiths use all three expressions interchangeably. As you can see in the composition table above, it is simply the percentage of copper and silver, added to gold that makes the difference between these three types of warm gold’s.
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