Some interesting things about rhodium.
Bright white and protective!
Rhodium plated jewellery adds an extra layer of protection to jewellery and produces a brighter white than sterling silver, white gold, or platinum. Realistically, jewellery cannot be crafted from solid rhodium because, despite its strength, rhodium is brittle. A layer of rhodium plating must be just the right thickness to keep it from cracking–.75-1.0 microns is perfect. Any thinner and the metal underneath would show; any thicker and the coating would crack. That perfect layer of rhodium can enhance the appearance, quality, and longevity of your jewellery.
All white gold, is essentially an alloy of pure (24ct) yellow gold, so it is natural to assume that it has a yellow tinge. The rhodium plating is a process which gives the white gold its ultra white colour by placing a coating over the existing metal.
Most white gold jewellery in the commercial market is actually rhodium plated. If your “white gold” jewellery is lustrous silver, then it probably has a layer of rhodium. If it has a light yellow tinge then it’s likely true white gold. But owning rhodium plated white gold is not bad–the rhodium coating increases the value and durability. You will just have to prepare for some maintenance to retain that reflective shine.
Solid white gold isn’t white but slightly yellow. Rhodium plating white gold gets rid of the yellow tinge. Different shades of gold come from alloying or combining metals.