When it comes to purchasing a ring, everyone has an idea for what they want it to look like. But I know it is harder for folks to pick the type of metal their ring should be made of. It really depends on your budget as well as lifestyle – how much wear and tear will your ring get? So let’s spend a moment and have a frank discussion on how to choose the right metal for you.
- Platinum versus Palladium. Platinum is a timeless option for today’s groom, and at Perry’s Emporium we are happy to make rings from this metal. But please don’t forget about palladium, platinum’s more cost-efficient cousin. Both metals are between 90 percent and 95 percent pure in jewelry form. Both are considered noble metals and are hypoallergenic. Platinum is a natural gray metal that is polished white, and will form a patina as it ages. Palladium is a “forever white” metal.
- Yellow Gold versus White Gold. This is the most traditional of all wedding band choices, and whether you select white or yellow gold there is a width, size and fit for everyone. Gold rings are offered in different millimeter sizes; the average men’s width is 6mm and the average women’s width is 3mm. Depending on changes in the gold market, wedding bands will average $450 for a woman’s 3mm 14k gold ring to $900 for a men’s 6mm comfort-fit 14k yellow gold ring. Gold is a malleable metal and can be reshaped, polished, stretched and sized throughout its life.
- Tungsten Carbide. Tungsten carbide is an extremely hard, scratch-resistant material that is an excellent option for the handyman in your life. The material is not hypoallergenic due to the fact that most tungsten-carbide blends have trace elements of nickel. But for a groom who wants that dark gray, heavy look (at an average retail price of $275 and up), this is an exceptional choice.
- Tantalum. Introducing … tantalum! Not familiar? It is the newest member of the Perry’s Emporium wedding band family. It is a rare, dense, blue-gray colored hypoallergenic metal. As an alternative to gold or platinum, this metal can also be stretched or condensed up to a half-size. Unlike other alternative metals, tantalum is shatterproof, biocompatible and economical for grooms of all ages.
- Titanium. Titanium is a lustrous transition metal with a low density. It is of high strength and is extremely economical. Titanium is typically alloyed with other elements to produce a strong lightweight product for jet engines, missiles and spacecraft. These rings are NOT malleable, cannot be stretched and will scratch. However, starting at a mere $95 a ring, these are a great option for grooms on a tight budget.
- Cobalt Chrome. Cobalt chrome is an alloy of cobalt and chromium. These rings have a very strong white metal look, the closest match to the white of white gold. It is a very strong metal used in the medical community for joint replacement and dental work, as it is highly resistant and biocompatible. These rings start at $250 and go up in price from there. They cannot be sized, nor stretched, but they can withstand everyday activities.
Still can’t decide? Come visit me and see these metals in person. We’ll help you pick the right one for you!
Alan Perry is the president of Perry’s Emporium and The Wedding Dress Shoppe, offering a range of services for couples, from engagement through their wedding day. Perry’s Emporium is one of the largest retail jewelry stores in Southeastern North Carolina and offers exclusive brands and one-of-a-kind estate jewelry. The Wedding Dress Shoppe is a full-service bridal salon featuring distinctive and stylish bridal gowns, bridesmaid dresses, and mother-of the-bride and flower girl attire. For more information, visit www.perrysemporium.com and www.theweddingdressshoppe.com.