What is 24 carat gold?

The term 24 carat gold is thrown around a lot, but what exactly is it and what role does it play in the jewellery industry? We’ll be exploring these questions and more in this guide.

What is 24 carat gold?

What makes 24 carat gold so alluring and talked about is the fact that it is made of 100% pure gold. In other words, it’s not an alloy and doesn’t contain any other metal. If gold is alloyed it is mixed with different ratios of other metals like nickel, silver, zinc, or copper.

What are the characteristics of 24c gold?

As you would expect, given its complete purity, 24c gold comes in a rich, bright shade of orange yellow. It conveys this air of class and elegance unlike anything else, except maybe diamonds. However, whilst it is beautiful to look at, the durability of pure gold isn’t very good. 

It has a tendency to bend and is vulnerable to scratches because of its fairly soft composition. This is why gold is often alloyed with other metals, to give it more strength and longevity for everyday wear.

Is 24c too soft for jewellery?

Contrary to popular belief, it is typically advised that you don’t buy jewellery that is made of 24 carat gold, especially rings. This is because, due to the purity of it, 24c gold is a malleable material that is prone to losing its structural integrity as time passes.

While its shine, high status, and brilliance can be tempting, wear soft jewellery like pure gold is almost sure to compromise its quality, and it will lose its initial beauty. You can get a gorgeous pendant necklace that is made of 18 carat or 15 carat gold and will last you significantly longer than any piece of jewellery made of 24 carat gold.

How much does 24 carat gold cost?

Unsurprisingly, 24 carat gold is the priciest type of gold on the market today. In 2021, the standard price for just one ounce of pure gold was around £1,300. It’s important to note that the price of 24c gold constantly fluctuates. However, it never drops but a large amount, and it depends on several other marketing factors, such as its rarity. 

24c gold is incredibly rare as sourcing it takes a lot of effort and there isn’t an abundance of it in the world. It’s this scarcity that makes it so expensive, precious, and desirable. In addition, given that this type of gold is rarely used for jewellery, it is difficult to make a direct comparison with the prices of 14 or 18 carat gold.

Is 24 carat gold a good investment?

Buying gold is always a good investment. This is because there are limited quantities of it, so demand is always higher the supply. Therefore, the value of your gold will only increase as years go by. However, in terms of jewellery, going for 24c gold is probably not the best option. 

It would take a great deal of maintenance for it to keep its value and that’s if you hardly ever want to wear it. If you want to wear it as daily jewellery it will definitely lose its structure and decline in both value and quality.

How does 24c gold compare to other carats?

Now that we have seen the properties and uses of 24c gold, we can compare it to the features of other carats. Naturally, the lower the carat the lower the price, but opting for jewellery that’s around 14 to 18c will give you a nice balance between cost and quality. Alloyed gold at this level will be more durable to be worn as daily jewellery whilst still including a fairly high amount of pure gold.


There’s no denying that 24 carat gold is certainly something special and should be appreciated for what it is. However, it isn’t the best option when it comes to jewellery as it doesn’t have the structural composition to cope with the wear and tear of daily use. You will benefit more from purchasing jewellery that is 18 or 14 carat gold.

If you’re looking for a stunning bespoke necklace or any other piece of gold jewellery contact Barbara Tipple and her team today. As experienced independent jewellers in Southampton, they know jewellery better than anyone and can create unique, handcrafted pieces that will last a lifetime.