Difference Between 22k Gold and 24k Gold

Gold is a precious metal that has been used for various purposes, including jewelry, coins, and investment for centuries. It is a soft, malleable, and ductile metal that is easily shaped into different forms. Gold is graded by its purity, which is measured in karats (K), with 24 karat gold being the purest form. In this essay, we will discuss the difference between 22K gold and 24K gold.

What is 24K Gold?

The 24K refers to the purest gold in natural form characterized by a bright yellow color. What this means is that there are 24 parts in the gold without any impurities of other metals. The 24K has about 99.9 percent of gold. That said, there is no any gold that can be rated over 24K, i.e. 26k. 24K cold is more expensive than 22K. It is, however, not as durable as the 22K. Instead, it is pliable and less dense than the 22K, and as thus it is seldom used in jewelry and ornament manufacturing. But there are several coins made of the pure gold 24K.

Medical devices and electronic devices are some of the applications of the pure gold 24K. For children suffering from ear infections, a gold-manufactured medical device called the gold tympanostomy tube is put in their ears to enhance middle ear aeration.

A pure gold is a lucrative investment due to its enormous value that has a potential of appreciating. It never loses value or tarnishes. Gold invested for generation will remain in good value the generation finds it, and can be easily converted into cash anytime for lucrative earnings. There is an investment-grade gold investment which serves as a source of future wealth. This is a bullion jewelry investment comprised of gold without any impurities. When the value of gold appreciates, the jewelry also increases in value. But much jewelry today is seldom made of pure gold, but a combination of gold and other metals hence such jewelries are not re- sold at their original costs.

What is 22K Gold?

The 22K gold follows 24K with purity. Its purity is identified by 22/24*100 which gives 91.67% of gold content. The remaining percentage, 8.33%, goes to other metals such as copper, zinc, nickel and silver. Because gold in natural form, 24K, is soft and pliable, any impurities added make it more strong and durable. Jewelries are predominantly made with 22K which is more durable and harder. But 22K is not often used for heavily studded jewelry or diamonds.

22K gold is subject to changes in color based on the abundance of secondary impurities included in it. There could be a pink gold, rose gold, white gold, green gold, etc. A white gold signifies the abundance of alloys such as palladium and nickel, while a green cold signifies the abundance of zinc or silver. If more copper is added, the gold could turn rose or pink or reddish. 24K remains bright yellow in color because there are not alloys in it.

Other countries impose legal requirements on the sale of gold to be described as such. If, for example, a jewelry is printed 0.9166, it is a 22K gold expressed in fineness by dividing 22 by 24 and then multiplying with 1000. Others avoid this confusion by simply printing 22K, 18K or 14K to indicate the purity of the gold.

Differences: 22K and 24K Gold

In terms of appearance, 22K and 24K gold have slightly different colors. 22K gold has a slightly darker yellow color than 24K gold due to the presence of other metals. This color difference is often subtle and may not be noticeable to the naked eye. The color of 24K gold is bright and vivid, giving it a distinctive appearance.

Another difference between 22K and 24K gold is their weight. 22K gold is denser than 24K gold since it contains a higher percentage of other metals. This means that a piece of 22K gold jewelry will weigh more than the same size piece of 24K gold jewelry. This weight difference is often negligible, but it can be a factor to consider when buying gold items.

In terms of care and maintenance, 22K and 24K gold require similar levels of care. Both types of gold can be cleaned using a mild soap and water solution, or with a commercial jewelry cleaner. However, since 24K gold is more prone to scratching and damage, it requires extra care to prevent damage to the surface.

The following table highlights the major differences between 22K and 24K Gold −


22K Gold

24K Gold

Gold content

22K is the second most pure with 91.67% of gold and other alloys contributing the remaining percentage. These alloys could be nickel, zinc, silver or copper depending on desirable results.

24K is the most pure gold in natural form containing about 99% of gold. Such gold is soft and pliable and can be molded into desirable shapes.


The 22K gold is, however, not easy to discern as the color depends on the alloys included. It could be pink, reddish, rose, green or white gold. It could, therefore, be difficult to spot the 22K gold if it has not been printed.

24K is easy to discern with its bright yellow color.


22K gold is cheaper than 24K gold.

24K gold is more expensive than 22K gold simply because of its purity of 99% gold.


Gold in its purest form is soft and pliable. The addition of alloys in 22K gold makes it more durable and harder. Therefore, 22K has more strength than the 24K hence it is used predominantly in ornaments and jewelries.

24K gold has less strength as compared to 22K gold.


In conclusion, the main difference between 22K and 24K gold is their purity level. 22K gold is 91.67% pure and is more durable and less expensive than 24K gold. 24K gold, on the other hand, is 99.9% pure and is the most valuable and expensive form of gold.

While 22K gold is commonly used in jewelry, 24K gold is often used for investment purposes. The color and weight of 22K and 24K gold are slightly different, and both types of gold require similar levels of care and maintenance. Ultimately, the choice between 22K and 24K gold will depend on the individual.

Updated on: 25-Apr-2023


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