Can You Turn White Gold Into Yellow Gold?

Have you ever wondered if it's possible to transform the sleek sheen of white gold into the classic luster of yellow gold? At Kirk & Company Jewelers, we often encounter clients curious about this very question. As a family-run business since 1986, we're here to share our expertise and guide you through the fascinating world of gold.

Understanding Gold and Its Alloys

The Nature of Gold

Gold, in its purest form, is known for its distinct yellow color and remarkable malleability. However, pure gold is often too soft for everyday wear.

Alloys and Their Purpose

To enhance its strength and alter its color, gold is commonly mixed with other metals, creating what we call an alloy. This process not only improves durability but also offers a variety of color options.

White Gold Composition

White gold, a popular choice for many, is created by alloying gold with metals like palladium and silver. This combination gives it a sleek, silver-like appearance.

Yellow Gold Composition

Traditional yellow gold, on the other hand, is alloyed with metals like copper and zinc, which maintain and enhance its warm, golden hue.

The Process of Converting White Gold to Yellow Gold

Is It Possible?

The question at hand is intriguing. Technically, altering the color of white gold to yellow is a complex process, which involves manipulating the alloy composition.

Methods Used

This transformation would require careful removal of the outer layers and the addition of the appropriate alloy mix to achieve the desired yellow color.


  • Changing Alloy Composition: Gold is mixed with different metals to create various colors. For instance, mixing gold with copper creates rose gold, while gold and palladium or nickel can create white gold. By altering these mixtures, jewelers can change the color of gold.
  • Surface Depletion Gilding: This process involves removing some of the non-gold alloy elements from the surface, enriching the gold content at the surface, and changing its color.


  • Rhodium Plating: Commonly used to give white gold its bright, silvery finish. It can also be used to change the color of gold to a more white or silver shade.
  • Gold Plating: Applying a layer of gold of a different color (like rose gold or yellow gold) over another metal or gold alloy. This is a common method to change the appearance of jewelry temporarily.


  • This process is used primarily for metals like titanium and not for gold. However, it's a method for changing metal color through electrochemical means and can be mentioned for comparative purposes.


  • Chemical Treatment: Chemicals can be applied to the surface of gold alloys to induce color changes. This method is more commonly used with other metals like bronze or silver.
  • Laser Treatment: Using lasers to create color changes on the metal's surface. This is a less common method and is used more for artistic purposes than practical jewelry alteration.
  • Heat Treatment: Applying heat can change the color of some gold alloys. This method requires precision, as excessive heat can damage the gold.

Challenges and Considerations

It's important to note that not all these methods are suitable for every piece of gold jewelry. Factors like the existing alloy composition, the design of the piece, and the desired final color play significant roles in determining the appropriate method. 

Additionally, some of these processes can affect the durability and wearability of the jewelry, so they should be performed by skilled professionals.

Pros and Cons of Conversion


Converting white gold to yellow could offer a new look without the need to purchase new jewelry.


However, the process can be costly, and the results might not meet the expectations in terms of color and durability.

Alternative Solutions


A more feasible option is re-plating your white gold jewelry with a layer of yellow gold. This method is less invasive and more cost-effective.

Purchasing New Jewelry

Alternatively, considering a new piece of yellow gold jewelry might be a more straightforward and satisfying solution.

Professional Advice and Services

We at Kirk & Company Jewelers, with our commitment to Custom and Repair services, advise consulting with our experienced jewelers. We can help assess the best route for your jewelry needs.


Turning white gold into yellow gold is a complex and intriguing subject. At Kirk & Company Jewelers, we're committed to guiding you through these decisions with our expertise. We invite you to contact us for a Free Custom Jewelry Consultation or Book an appointment today to explore your options.

Contact Information

Kirk & Company Jewelers

117 Main Street

Milford, OH 45150

Phone: Text or Call: (513) 575-5475

Business Hours: Tues & Sat: 10 am - 4 pm

Wed - Fri: 10 am - 6 pm

Sun & Mon: Closed

Financing is available from Wells Fargo.

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