The metal you choose for your engagement and wedding rings can be picked for aesthetics or based on your lifestyle and desired durability. Some metals are more expensive, but will last longer, but some are so tough, they cannot be resized or easily cut off your finger. These are all important factors to consider when deciding on the type of metal for your rings.
What Wedding Band Metal is the Most Durable?
Whether you work with your hands, love to adventure outside, or are simply looking for a ring design that will rise to the challenge of living an active lifestyle, knowing which metals are the most durable is important. Keep in mind that strong can mean durable (resistant to chipping and breaking) or hard (scratch-resistant), so be sure you understand both the durability and hardness before you choose your metals.
- Platinum is a durable, luxurious, white-colored metal that’s hypoallergenic and won’t ever fade. While it’s the most durable metal available and will last the longest, it’s also the heaviest and most dense metal you can choose and has a relatively high price tag.
- Palladium is a white, silvery-colored precious metal that’s similar to platinum, and just a tad harder. It’s hypoallergenic, won’t tarnish or lose its color and is much lighter and less expensive than platinum.
- Titanium is a silver-gray metal that can be anodized, meaning it can be converted into a variety of colors like pink, red or blue, polished to a shine or brushed for a matte appearance. It’s extremely durable, light weight and scratch-resistant, but cannot be resized or cut off. It’s much harder than platinum, but won’t shatter if dropped.
- Tungsten is four times harder than titanium, but because it’s so hard, it’s also very brittle. It’s the most scratch-resistant metal you’ll find, is affordable, but is heavy and cannot be resized or cut off. It’s also one of the only metals that can conduct heat and electricity.
- Tantalum is naturally bluish-gray in color, is slightly darker than platinum and naturally shiny. It’s extremely durable, highly resistant to scratches and shatterproof. Like many other metals, tantalum is hypoallergenic, and is also quite malleable and can be resized.
- Cobalt is extremely white, polishes well and will not tarnish over time. It has a hardness second only to tungsten but without the brittleness. It’s extremely scratch resistant and very durable, but heavier than other metals.
- Stainless steel is becoming popular because of its strength, durability and affordability. Shiny and strong, stainless steel rings can be polished to take on different looks matte or more reflective. It has the look of sterling silver but is corrosion resistant and won’t tarnish.
As you can see, there are many different types of durable metals which fall outside of traditional gold, and may be more attractive or better suited for your ring. Many of these metals can be polished to a high shine, textured, made matte and even colored. Some of these metals you can also engrave. Just like looking for a gemstone and weighing hardness versus toughness, you’ll want to make sure to carefully choose your metal considering its weight and feel, resistance to scratches and durability.
How to Choose the Metal for Your Ring
From conventional yellow, white and rose gold to tungsten or even wood, there are many options when it comes to ring materials. Since your wedding and proposal rings will be worn together, it’s best to pick the same metal for both. If you’re drawn to cooler hues and silver-toned jewelry, then platinum or white gold is the way to go, while yellow or rose gold are good choices if you gravitate toward warmer tones. You can also mix metals, by choosing a warm metal like gold, then setting the diamond in platinum to enhance and protect the stone for instance.
In addition to your style, think about what you do with your hands everyday, the more intensive your lifestyle is, the harder and more durable your ring needs to be. If you’re set on gold, choose a lower karat as gold hardened with an alloy will have a better of withstanding a lifetime of daily wear. If you need something more durable, there are many choices and even different colors, but remember there are some materials that can’t be resized or cut off.
Also consider the details of your ring- will it have prongs? Do you want an engraving? You’ll also want to choose something that is comfortable, some materials are heavier than others and others you may need to avoid if you have sensitive skin. Ask yourself how much upkeep you’re willing to take on; some metals need to be polished, white gold needs to be redipped in rhodium to maintain its color and shine, while other materials are low maintenance.
To get the best ring for you and your partner, choose a metal with qualities that match your needs and lifestyle, while avoiding bothersome disadvantages. If you would like to create a custom ring or need help, please give us a call at (303) 385-8449 or click here to schedule your appointment. We’re here to help you create beautiful rings that’ll last a lifetime.