— by Cullen Jewellery

Precious Metals Guide

When it comes to selecting the precious metal for your jewellery, everybody has a unique preference. We offer a range of precious metals for you to decide between, including platinum, rose gold, white gold and yellow gold.

Jeweller working on a Cullen Jewellery Engagement Ring

Recycled Gold

Gold mining has a terrible history of human rights abuses, unethical labour practices and destructive environmental impacts. To produce enough gold for a single ring, over 20 tons of ore must be moved - resulting in extreme environmental devastation. Mining destroys the natural environment, creates water pollution and often intrudes upon indigenous people’s rights.

At Cullen Jewellery, we are committed to providing ethical, environmentally-conscious fine jewellery to our clients. For this reason, we exclusively use recycled gold for all of our ring settings.

What is Recycled Gold?

Put simply, recycled gold is gold that has been melted down from already existing gold products such as old jewellery, unused metals and waste. Since gold is naturally renewable, it can be melted and recycled over and over without ever losing its purity or value over time. To mine for new gold, natural forests and habitats must be cut down - recycled gold breaks this destructive cycle by re-using existing gold!

Platinum Engagement Ring


An increasingly popular choice, platinum is a sleek silvery-white coloured metal with a beautiful shine. This metal type is naturally hypoallergenic and is a great choice for those with metal allergies. Less malleable than gold, platinum is extremely durable and will not tarnish or corrode. For its superior quality and lustrous appearance, this precious metal is the mostexpensive option.

18k Yellow Gold Engagement Ring

18K Yellow Gold

A classic and supremely popular choice, 18k yellow gold features the traditional, famous gold hue with a beautifully lustrous shine. 18k yellow gold is a mixture of 75% fine gold and 25% alloys which are added to strengthen the metal. With this added strength, 18k yellow gold is very durable and perfectly suitable for everyday wear.

18k Rose Gold Engagement Ring

18K Rose Gold

18k rose gold is an alloy of gold and copper, creating a beautiful blush-pink colour. As the name suggests, this pink-hued, rosy option is a feminine and romantic choice of metal. Rose gold is more affordable than platinum and is approximately the same cost as white and yellow gold. With added strength provided by the copper in the alloy, 18k rose gold is a durable metal type that will not require extra maintenance.

18k White Gold Engagement Ring

18K White Gold

With a similar silvery white appearance as platinum, 18k white gold is a stunning and more affordable option for those who love silver-coloured jewellery. Since white gold features a rhodium plating to give it a silvery-white finish, it will need to be replated regularly to maintain its colour.

What’s the Difference Between 9K, 14K and 18K Gold?

You may have heard of the term “24 carat gold”. This is the name given to 100% pure gold. Beautiful, yet very soft and malleable, it is impractical for everyday wear. To make it stronger and more suitable for jewellery, gold must be mixed with other metals, called “alloys”. This can be metals such as silver, tin, nickel, zinc and palladium. When referring to carats (or karats), the number of carats in gold is a measurement of how much of the alloy (out of 24 parts) is made of pure gold. For example, in 9k gold, 9 parts out of 24 are made of pure gold and in 18k gold, 18 out of 24 parts are made of pure gold. The other parts are a blend of different metals used to reinforce the strength of the jewellery.

As you can guess, the less pure gold in the mix, the less expensive it is. Selecting a lower carat gold can be helpful for those working within a tight budget but it is important to note that 9k and 14k gold may have a paler colour due to the lower gold percentage.

Did you know?

Your gold ring will usually have a three digit number stamped on the inside of the band. This signifies the purity of the gold. Since 9k gold is 9/24 pure gold, and this fraction in percentage form is 37.5%, the number “375” will be stamped to the ring. Similarly, 18k gold will have a 750 stamp to represent the 75% (or 18/24) pure gold.

Cullen Jewellery Engagement Ring