White gold. Yellow gold. Rose gold. Green gold. Old gold. New gold. 14k gold. 24k gold. There are so many different types of gold chains to choose from that it can feel entirely overwhelming. And what’s even more overwhelming is trying to find a stylish piece that still fits within your budget.
If you’re a rapper like Kodak Black or Snoop Dogg, then you don’t really need to pay much attention to the price tag. But if you’re like most of the population, dollar signs are just as important as the make and quality of your piece.
So how much can you expect to pay for a gold chain? Here is everything you need to know before you buy.
How Much Is Gold Worth? The Cost of Gold Explained
Pure gold is one of the most precious metals on the planet, which is why jewelers price gold jewelry so high. A piece of jewelry made from gold has been used as a symbol of wealth, power, and prosperity since ancient times. The earliest findings of jewelry date back about 25,000 years ago, and it was originally used as a way to protect against bad luck and evil spirits.
Since then, gold has been used by Ancient Egyptians and royal figures as a way to denote their status. This is one of the many reasons why gold continues to be expensive to this day — purely because it is representative of wealth.
Gold is also a fairly rare metal in comparison to many others, making it a bit more expensive because of supply and demand. Additionally, it is difficult to extract, so the cost of labor when it comes to striking gold is also taken into consideration.
But ultimately, the price of gold is a social construction. Simply put, we all agree that gold is expensive, so solid gold and real gold chains can rack up super high price tags. As of writing this article, just one ounce of gold goes for a market priceof $1,750 US dollars.
When you start adding pendants or diamond gems to the mix, you can start seeing stars when you see the price.
What Factors Affect the Price of a Gold Chain?
The harsh answer is that there is not one answer to the question of how much a gold chain costs. This is because there are so many variables that determine the final price of your piece.
Let’s take a look at some of the factors influencing the price of your next gold chain necklace:
1. The Type of Gold
The type of gold that your chain is made with will be the biggest factor in determining how much you’ll end up paying. Pure, solid gold will naturally run the highest price tag, with Cuban link chains varying anywhere from $1,000 to hundreds of thousands of dollars, depending on other factors.
But most people aren’t necessarily in the market for solid gold. Instead, gold vermeil and gold plating are more accessible alternatives that are cheaper in price. Each of these is made with a portion of real gold combined with another metal alloy.
Gold vermeil is a high-quality form of silver called sterling silver. This is a very sturdy and quality metal that is then plated with a thin layer of pure gold. This gives it the appearance and feel of solid gold without the high price since sterling silver is much less expensive.
Gold plating is similar, but the main difference is that the base metal is usually lower quality, probably something like stainless steel or nickel. The gold plating is then a little less thick than vermeil, but it still gives off the same brassy reflection.
Another way to think about this is by looking at your gold in karats. Pure gold, without being combined with another metal, is 24 karats, whereas gold vermeil usually falls somewhere between 20-22 karats. Anything less than that is likely to be gold-plated. The lower the karat gold, the lower the value of the gold.
White gold and rose gold tend to be used for 14k gold chains, but even a 14k gold rope chain can still run a hefty price tag because the alloys here still contain high-quality metals to give them their iconic hues outside of the typical color.
2. The Chain Size
The size of the chain and the weight of the chain also play an important role in determining how much you’ll be paying for your piece. Naturally, the larger the chain, the more you can expect to fork over.
A Diamond Prong Cuban Chain is a classic design that has the potential to be huge and bulky. While there are smaller variations, these are usually meant to make statements and are best worn when you go big. However, a choker, cable chain, or Figaro chain are usually a bit thinner and won’t run as high of a price.
At the end of the day, the chain style you want to wear is completely dependent on your own personal fashion tastes. It can also depend on your other accessories.
For instance, if you go with a blinged-out, white gold watch, you might want to balance it with a more subtle pendant necklace in the same shade to create well-balanced proportions. So, pair a thick watch band with a think box chain necklace for maximum impact — the choice is yours.
However, if you’re someone with a bold personality who likes to wear giant pieces, you might want to set aside a little more in your budget to make room for the extra weight.
3. The Details of Diamonds and Pendants
A gold chain by itself can be expensive, but you really start to see the price skyrocket once you start adding gemstones and pendants. Diamonds are one of the easiest ways to take an affordable piece and make it quite the financial endeavor.
This is one of the reasons why engagement rings are so expensive – it’s not the gold on the band; it’s the diamond rock sitting in the middle. If you get fine jewelry with diamonds, you can expect to pay thousands more than you would have without them.
When buying diamonds, you want to think about the four C’s: diamond cut, carat, color, and clarity. Diamonds that fall short in one or more of these categories will not be as expensive as pure diamonds that are of perfect quality. In most cases, you can’t tell much of a difference, so don’t be afraid to go down in quality to get the pieces you’ve had your eyes on.
Pendants can also run a high price tag because these are often made with a higher concentration of gold compared to your piece. Additionally, many pendants are handcrafted, so you need to take into consideration the cost of labor and the time it takes to craft them.
What Is a Gold Chain Worth? The Bottom Line
It’s no secret that a gold chain can run a pretty high price tag. Because of gold’s relative scarcity as well as its symbol of status, it has cemented itself as one of the most expensive metals in jewelry.
Factors like the type of gold, the size of a chain, and diamonds or pendants can drastically affect the end price. Additionally, you might end up paying more depending on where you get your chain from.
Keep in mind that 24-karat gold doesn’t have the durability that alloys tend to. So, if you want to wear your gold bracelet to the gym or to a concert, 24-karat gold might not hold up as well as you need it to.
You can get high-quality jewelry without needing to worry about breaking the bank. 6 Ice is the finest purveyor of hip-hop jewelry, and our lifetime guarantee means that you can have confidence in your pieces no matter how much or how little you spend.
Don’t let price act as a barrier between you and the best version of yourself. Browse our best sellers collection today and start dressing for success.