Ring Metals of Choice
We have all heard of silver, gold, and platinum, and you’ve probably heard of palladium, titanium and tungsten, too. But what exactly is each type of these metals, and — more importantly — how do you determine which is the right metal for you when choosing your wedding rings.
Most popular metal in wedding rings is probably gold. Gold is very durable and the variety of gold colors – yellow, white and pink (or rose) allows us to express individuality and tastes differently.
In the U.S. gold is most commonly sold in 10K, 14K and 18K. Other countries in the world offer 8K, 9K, 15K, 22K and even 24K gold. When polished, gold gives a very desirable luster that compliments gem stones beautifully, especially diamonds.
A very sought after metal for wedding and engagement jewelry. It is from a family of metals that naturally have a pure white color. This white sheen is its attraction. Platinum is about 65% heavier in density than gold, so a ring weighing 5 grams in gold would weigh 8.25 grams in platinum. Platinum is also more expensive per gram than gold due to its rarity, therefore platinum rings are considerably higher in cost than their counterparts in white gold.
Polished platinum sparkles and shines and is just as durable as gold. However, platinum does have a slightly higher tendency to scratch than gold and needs to be cared for more frequently.
This metal hails from the platinum family, but has become popular in jewelry only in recent years. Its desirable white sheen makes it an attractive alternative to platinum since it is about a quarter the price.
Just as lustrous as platinum, palladium is mostly made into basic bands and more contemporary jewelry.
In comparison to gold and platinum, silver is much more widely found therefore, more affordable. Though white when polished, silver has a tendency to tarnish over time and eventually settles on a more antique look. Many find the blackening of silver desirable, and prefer it. Due to its lower pricing, silver is most popular in the form of plain bands rather than set with diamonds. Silver is not as durable as other metals, and, over time, will dent and bend out of its original shape, giving it a more worn old look.
Another silver colored metal, titanium is a durable material. It has a low density and is very lightweight. One of titanium’s most appealing characteristics is that it is corrosion resistant, so it won’t tarnish or change color over time. Titanium is not considered a fine metal and is more affordable than gold, silver and platinum. It is mostly used in fashion jewelry.
A steel grey metal, tungsten is a harder alloy than gold and can be used in jewelry as an affordable alternative to gold and platinum. It is hypoallergenic, making it useful for rings that will resist scratching. It is commonly found and therefore fairly an affordable metal. Mostly used in trendy sleek ring designs, tungsten is not considered a fine metal as gold, platinum and silver.
To recap, gold and platinum are probably the most commonly used metals in wedding and engagement jewelry. Their cost based on their rarity places these styles at the higher end of cost, but they are durable and beautiful in their luster. Though silver is also a fine metal, it is less desirable to be set with diamonds, due to its tendency to collect dents and bend more easily.
Though great alternatives for making rings, titanium and tungsten are not commonly found in wedding jewelry, but simple basic designs can be found and implemented as wonderful affordable bands.
Whether you seek elegant and flashy, or modern and sleek, there is a metal out there to fit every taste, every budget and most of all every finger!
In his 25 years experience in designing and creating engagement rings and wedding bands, Rony has dedicated more than a decade of service toward helping same-sex couples translate their sentiments of commitment into meaninful custom rings, symbolizing their unique love.