Playful and flirty or elegant and genteel, gold drop earrings have a place in every woman’s jewelry wardrobe. With gold’s versatility — ubiquitous yellow gold to glowing white gold to warm rose gold — it is a perennial favorite. And the myriad of designs in white gold drop earrings, including balls, hoops and pendants, means there is a wide selection to suit anyone’s personal taste.

Moreover, pearls and colored gemstones can transform ordinary daytime earrings into extraordinary eveningwear, adding to the adaptability of these earrings. The added beauty is that, despite gold’s reputation as a precious metal, pretty styles of 14k gold drop earrings are available at every price point.

Yet, with so many choices, making a selection is a matter of not only determining which styles are personally appealing, but also what a good value is. Obtaining a bit of background information, therefore, is beneficial when shopping for 14k white gold drop earrings. Herewith, are a few tips.

A clear understanding of what constitutes a drop earring is a good place to begin. Often spoken of interchangeably with chandelier earrings, drop earrings are actually somewhat different. Suspended in a straight line from top to bottom, drop earrings, unlike chandelier earrings, don’t have appendages with additional stones or beads dangling from them. Instead, stones or beads may connect in a linear fashion, one above the other or one stone may be at the end of (or within) a chain, hoop or wire.

An additional consideration is the amount of pure gold contained in the gold tear drop earrings. This is always indicated in karats, ranging from 10 to 24. Since the higher the gold content, the greater the number of karats, 24-karat jewelry is pure gold. However, the problem is that pure gold is also quite malleable, making it easily distorted and damaged. Therefore, for added durability, jewelry designers often add other metals to gold in order to create long-lasting jewelry. So, inquiring about the gold content of a particular pair of gold circle drop earrings before making a purchase is a good idea.

Customers seeking to purchase these earrings often find that 14-karat gold, being 14 parts gold and 10 parts other metal, is the most common composition. Rapidly increasing in popularity due to its comparatively lower price is 10-karat, which is less than 50 percent gold, but forms equally beautiful jewelry.

Another consideration is the back of the earring, called a hanger, referring to the portion that is visible behind
the ear. Most common are the fish hook, which often has a slight upturn at the bottom and the French hoop, with a rounder bottom. Both remain open once inserted in the ear and the ease of use make these popular styles.

Rounding out the hanger styles of gold drop hoop earrings are the lever back and the butterfly back. Containing a clasp that snaps in place after the wire is inserted through the ear, the lever back has a secure closure, making it the least likely to be lost. The butterfly back, on the other hand, is familiar to wearers of post earrings as it has a straight bar that is inserted in the ear, then a small “butterfly” is slid along the bar to rest against the back of the ear lobe. Easily dislodged, this type of closure often results in lost earrings.

To put all this information in perspective and provide a visual representation of what is available in gold plated drop earrings (without having to trek from store to store), the Internet is a great resource. For example, Ross-Simons (www.ross-simons.com) offers excellent quality in a wonderful array of styles and price points. From delicate pearls suspended on white gold chains to black onyx drops on yellow gold wire to bold two-toned triangular drops (and everything in between) these beautifully crafted gold drop earrings range in price from below $100 to more than $500.

Another great Internet source is Overstock. Offering fine quality merchandise from manufacturers who overstocked these items, Overstock’s gold drop earrings are high in design and low in cost. From delightfully feminine gold filigree drops to tri-color gold discs to Art Deco-styled white gold teardrops, the assortment is wide.

Equipped with the right information, shopping for gold drop earrings can be a pleasurable experience.

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