There are many factors that go into choosing a wedding band and the type of material it’s made from is just as an important element as the ring’s design. In recent years, tungsten has become a popular choice amongst wedding couples because of its durability. Here’s what you need to know about tungsten wedding bands and a few tips for buying a ring you’ll love wearing.
What is Tungsten?
Tungsten is a rare metal that exists naturally on the Earth as a chemical compound. It is a heavy metal that has the highest melting point of all the metals, as well as a very high density. By itself, the metal is brittle. However, when it is combined with carbide or other materials it becomes incredibly hard and difficult to break.
Benefits and Disadvantages of Tungsten
One of the things people find most appealing about tungsten is its durability. It is the only metal that can be permanently polished to a glossy shine. It goes through a special process, including being placed in an oven set at an extreme temperature, that helps make it scratch proof. The only thing that can damage a ring made with tungsten is a diamond.
Rings made from tungsten are 10 times harder than rings made from 18K gold and 4 times harder than rings crafted from titanium. These rings will not bend or warp and can even withstand direct impact.
Another selling point for many newlyweds is the fact that tungsten is cheaper than gold. A comparison at one jewelry retailer found that a men’s white or gold wedding band sold for about $700, while a tungsten band cost around $200. For cash-strapped couples, tungsten provides an affordable way to get a durable ring that will hold onto its beauty for a long time.
Like any other product, tungsten wedding bands do have some drawbacks. Because the ring requires a special molding process, very few jewelers know how to work with the material and/or have the equipment to do so. This is can make it difficult to locate someone who can increase or decrease the size of the ring.
However, even if you do find someone who can make adjustments to your wedding band, the person won’t be able to do much to the ring because tungsten is not as pliable as other metals. This means you may need to purchase a brand new ring if you gain or lose a lot of weight.
Since the ring is scratch-proof, you may also have some difficulty with getting the ring engraved. If you’re set on placing a loving message on the ring to commemorate your wedding day, then you may want to use a more agreeable metal such as silver or gold.
Tips for Buying a Tungsten Ring
If you’ve decided that a tungsten wedding band is the right option for you, here are a few tips for purchasing one:
- Get the right size. As noted before, resizing a tungsten wedding band will be extremely difficult. You’ll want to take every precaution–such as getting your finger sized at different times of the day–to ensure you get a ring that fits comfortably.
- Look for cobalt-free rings. While cobalt is generally a safe substance, people have experienced allergic reactions to the element. Cobalt is sometimes added to tungsten to increase the ring’s durability. If you really want this type of ring, it’s best to purchase an inexpensive tungsten/cobalt bracelet and wear it for awhile to see if you’re allergic to the substance.
- Make sure you shop at a retailer that offers a warranty of some sort. This can help ensure you’re able to get the ring repaired or replaced at little to no cost if it does break.
The wedding band is a symbol of your enduring love, so take time choosing one that will last as long as your marriage. For more information about tungsten wedding bands, contact a local jeweler. Some retailers are even a one-stop shop for wedding and honeymoon essentials like designer lingerie.