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Gold diamond ring upright on white surface
Doug Armand/Digital Vision/Getty Images
Definition: The karat system is used to reveal the amount of pure gold found in an item.

  • 24 karat (24K) gold is pure gold.

  • 18 karat (18K) gold contains 18 parts gold and 6 parts another metal or metals, making it 75% gold.

  • 14 karat (14K) gold contains 14 parts gold and 10 parts another metal or metals, making it 58.3% gold.

  • 10 karat (10K) gold contains 10 parts gold and 14 parts another metal or metals, making it 41.7% gold. 10k gold is the minimum karat designation that can still be called gold in the US.

All About Gold

Gold Facts & Advice
Video: How to Spot Real Gold
Common Misspellings: The term carat, spelled with a "c," refers to the weight of a gemstone.
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  6. Glossary \"K\"
  7. Karat Definition, from the About.com Jewelry Glossary

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