Gold

24K (100% pure gold)
Being the highest karat of gold, it’s easy to assume that 24K is the “best” gold to buy, but that isn’t necessarily the case. Pure gold can be easily scratched and bent, so it’s impractical for daily wear (yet the most expensive). You wouldn’t want to do housework while wearing a set of 24K bracelets, but if you’re planning on attending a red-carpet event and want to make a statement, it might be another story.

22K (92% gold and 8% alloyed metals)
Even a modest mixture of only 8% alloyed metal makes 22 karat gold a touch stronger and more durable than pure gold. Nevertheless, care will need to be taken with this blend as it’s still the softest form of mixed metal jewelry.

18K (75% gold and 25% alloyed metals)
This is the most traditional mix of gold and other metals. 18K pieces tend to have a deeper yellow tone than 14K. Because of the higher gold content in 18K pieces, it will also yield a higher price than 14K, and is usually a sign of a higher quality piece of jewelry.

14K (58% gold and 42% alloyed metals)
This alloy offers more resistance to wear and tear than either 18K or 22K. It’s ideal for everyday use and is the most popular choice for engagement rings and wedding bands. If you have an active lifestyle (sports, regular exercise, manual labor, etc.), 14K jewelry would be the best option for you.

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OTHER GEMS

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