is 14k gold jewelry worth it here is the answer

Is 14k gold jewelry worth it?

I have been building my jewelry collection over some time now. It started off with a few pieces that belonged to my mother, I then added some more 10k pieces to my collection and I’ve started to add more 14k pieces. I can safely say that from now on I will be sticking to 14k pieces as I think they are worth the extra investment and here is why.

14k gold jewelry is worth it because it offers some of the best balance between durability, beauty and value for money. The alloy content will ensure that your pieces can withstand daily wear and tear white the gold content will help to maintain its beauty and lustre for years to come with little maintenance. 

When you consider how long 14k gold jewelry can last and how well it can retain its value, 14k pieces offer all the benefits of 18k gold pieces at a lower price point. It also offers a comparable level of durability to 10k pieces but the high gold content means there is less maintenance required. This is why I will be sticking to 14k pieces as a minimum from now on for my collection. 

Is 14k gold a good metal for jewelry

14k gold jewelry consists of 14 parts gold and 10 parts other metals, usually silver or copper, or zinc. 14k gold contains the most equally balanced gold to alloy content which means it offers the best of both worlds for anyone who is looking to add some beautiful and long-lasting pieces to their collection.

I wore my 14k gold ring every day for two months as an experiment for this post, and I can say from experience that it’s a very good material for everyday wear. This is especially true if your pieces contain gemstones because the sufficient level of alloy metals makes the material super strong and secure meaning they are less likely to become loose over time and fall out. 

14k gold is easy for jewelers to repair which is so important for women who like dainty, classic pieces because the links, hinges or even adjustments can be made easily when needed. In contrast, vermeil, gold-filled and gold-plated jewelry can never be repaired to the same extent which means when they break, you may just have to throw them out.

As one of the most common jewelry metals, 14k gold is a very reliable and high-quality metal for jewelry. It is highly durable, affordable and contains enough gold to give a beautiful rich color without being too yellow. It can also be easily adjusted and is strong enough to hold gemstones and diamonds securely making it one of the most popular metals for engagement rings.  

Just like other types of gold, 14K gold comes in three color options: white gold, yellow gold, and rose gold. Each color is made using a different metal that, when blended with gold, can change its appearance. A common composition for 14 karat white gold is 58.3% gold, 32.2% silver and 9.5% palladium. A common composition for 14 karat yellow gold is 58.3% gold, 30% silver and 11.7% copper. A common composition for 14 karat rose gold is 58.3% gold, 9.2% silver and 32.5% copper.

How long does 14k gold jewelry last?

14k gold jewelry is very long-lasting and high quality, but like any jewelry the longevity of your pieces depends on wear and tear and how well you maintain them. My 14k gold rings are relatively new but I already feel confident in wearing them everyday and I don’t have to worry too much if they get a bit wet. I do my best to dry them off when it happens and store them correctly.

As long as you don’t put too much strain or stress on your pieces from exposing them to too much air, moisture or chemicals, you should be able to keep your 14k gold pieces for many years and pass them down to the next generation if you wish. 

This is one of the best parts of starting a fine jewelry collection, in my opinion, because you gather beautiful pieces over your lifetime that will be enjoyed for many years to come. 14k gold pieces are tough enough that they don’t require a whole lot of maintenance to keep them in good shape.

Is 14k gold jewelry hypoallergenic?

Hypoallergenic is unfortunately used as a marketing term – hypoallergenic, really means “below the normal level” which is anything that less than 50% of the population is allergic to. So even though I’ve never had an allergic reaction to my 14k gold jewelry, which could contain small amounts of nickel, it does not mean that someone else will have the same tolerance.

This is why it’s important to know the composition of the 14k gold jewelry you are buying so that you can be sure that you can wear it without any issue. Nickel is the metal that causes an allergic skin reaction in some people which is usually minor but still irritating. Nickel is used in small amounts as an alloy metal and especially in white gold since it’s also used to change the color of the gold from yellow to white.

14k gold jewelry generally does not contain nickel but remember to be diligent and ask if your jewelry is nickel-free, not just hypoallergenic. The bottomline is if your 14k gold jewelry contains nickel even in small amounts, it’s not truly hypoallergenic.

Can you shower with 14k gold jewelry?

It’s not recommended to wear 14k gold jewelry in the shower because it has a relatively high alloy content and can accelerate tarnishing. In general, 14k gold is a high grade and durable metal and submerging your 14k jewelry in water temporarily shouldn’t do any irreversible damage. However, it’s better to avoid showering with it too often to maintain the quality, value and luster of your 14k pieces.

Does 14k gold tarnish easily? 

There is no accurate estimate of the time that it takes 14k gold to tarnish because it depends on the level and length of exposure. However, in comparison to other fine jewelry, 14k gold will tarnish faster than 18k and 24k because it contains higher alloy content but slower than 10k pieces. With care 14k jewelry should retain its rich color and should shine up very well after a quick polish.

How to prevent 14k gold jewelry from tarnishing.

The only gold jewelry that will never tarnish is 100% pure gold because it does not react easily to oxygen or sulfides. Tarnish is a natural reaction that happens to some metals on the outer layer of the jewelry so unlike rust which spreads throughout the metal, tarnishing only occurs on the outside layer that is exposed which means it’s not that big of a deal. Factors that can accelerate tarnishing include exposure to oxidants, moisture, and strong heat.

Here are some tips on how to keep your 14k gold jewelry from tarnishing so they look fantastic for years and years to come:

Keep it dry

Be mindful that tarnishing is accelerated when the metal comes into contact with anything that contains moisture, chemicals or even just the natural oils on your skin. This includes everything from water, body lotions, perfume and sweat so if your jewelry feels wet or slippery, take a dry microfiber cloth and dry it off. My rings are the most difficult to keep dry as they are wrapped tightly around my fingers and come into contact with water and soap when I wash my hands. Usually, I will take them off beforehand but if I can’t, I make sure to take them off and dry the inside of the ring as well.

Clean it regularly

You should always remove traces of discoloration or tarnish as soon as possible. This can be done easily by using some mild water with a few drops of dishwashing liquid and a soft toothbrush to gently scrub the piece around the affected area. Don’t submerge your pieces in the water especially if it contains gemstones, hold it outside and use the toothbrush to get it wet. Don’t forget to dry it with a soft cloth straight after. If it tarnishes regularly, take it to the jewelers to be plated in a protective layer of rhodium.

Store it properly

This is probably one of the best passive ways to ensure that your jewelry stays tarnish-free for longer. Jewelry boxes are not just for show. They serve a very important purpose. They are designed to have small compartments and drawers that are closed off as much as possible from the open air, because alloy metals can react simply to the atmosphere around them.

Store it properly

This is probably one of the best passive ways to ensure that your jewelry stays tarnish-free for longer. Jewelry boxes are not just for show. They serve a very important purpose. They are designed to have small compartments and drawers that are closed off as much as possible from the open air, because alloy metals can react simply to the atmosphere around them.

They’re also usually lined with felt which helps with drawing the moisture out of the air, creating the perfect environment for your jewelry to stay dry and protected while you’re not wearing it. So when you’re looking for a jewelry box, make sure that it’s lined with felt and it has small compartments to house your jewelry.

Separate your metals

Another reason why you should have a jewelry box to protect your 14k gold jewelry from tarnishing is because it allows you different spaces to separate your different types of jewelry. By this I mean, separating your sterling silver pieces from your 14k gold pieces and your 14k gold from other pieces as well. It doesn’t mean you have to have two jewelry boxes for each (unless you have a big collection, in which case it’s not a bad idea) but it’s just to be aware of not storing them so closely together. This is because jewelry that has high alloy content like sterling silver will react much faster and can cause lower alloy pieces like 14k gold to react faster than it normally would as well.

Get your jewelry plated in rhodium

If you have a very special piece of jewelry that you want to protect well then rhodium plating might be a good option for you. Rhodium is applied in a thin layer to help jewelry stay tarnish-free for longer. It’s mostly used for white gold jewelry but may also be used on silver and yellow gold. Rhodium plating is usually replaced every two years but this depends on how much wear and tear it gets over time.

It can also help protect your skin from pieces of jewelry that contain nickel as it’s a hypoallergenic metal. This is not the best solution for everyone however, it’s quite an expensive way to protect your jewelry which has to be redone every few years so it’s best for people who have very sentimental pieces that tarnish easily.

I hope you have learned all you need to know about 14k gold and you feel confident in your decision on whether it’s the right choice for you. I would love to see how you use this article to find some beautiful 14k pieces that you can wear as often as you like so please tag me on Instagram, Tiktok or Pinterest or you can or send me a message because I would love to see!

About the author 

Mish has a Masters in Fine Art and she’s passionate about classical design, style and culture. She loves to analyze fashion and style through this lens to help people develop a personal style that’s authentic and tasteful.