In its purest form, gold is soft and malleable and cannot be used to make jewelry. Gold is alloyed with several types of metals and compounds to make jewelry such as necklaces, earrings, bracelets and rings, and the type of compounds it is mixed with dictates what type of color and texture the gold piece has. When shopping for gold jewelry, you can choose from several different types of gold based on your personal tastes.
When pure gold is mixed with copper and silver, the result is yellow gold, one of the most common types of gold used in jewelry. Yellow gold has a vibrant yellow hue and often serves as the base color for two-tone, three-tone and multi-colored jewelry pieces such as gold rings, bracelets, necklaces and earrings.
White gold contains a high levels of zinc, silver and nickel to create a very faint, yellowish color. This type of gold is available in 14K and 18K and is often plated with rhodium to create a stronger "white" color. Some jewelers make white gold with palladium to achieve a true white color.
Black gold is also known as grey gold and is produced when yellow gold is mixed with sulfur and oxygen. Black gold undergoes a special chemical and laser process and can be used to create intricate patterns and details on certain types of metal jewelry. You can also purchase all-black gold jewelry.
Also known as pink gold or "Russian gold," this type of gold has a reddish or pinkish hue and is often used to create fine details on yellow gold jewelry. Different shades of rose gold contain various amounts of copper. You can find rose gold in rings, bracelets, custom necklaces and chokers designed with small flowers and other intricate details.
When yellow gold is mixed with alloys such as silver, zinc and copper, the result is green gold. Green gold has a very subtle green tinge to it. The green hue is most noticeable when the jewelry piece is designed with a combination of pink gold or yellow gold.