They don’t get as much attention as they should--from plain to exotic, men’s wedding bands deserve a second look.
If you know anyone getting married, you’ve no doubt seen pictures of sparkly engagement rings on social media. But you don’t see much attention paid to men’s wedding bands, and they’re often an afterthought even to the couple.
You put a lot of effort into finding the right engagement ring. Now put some time into shopping for and choosing your wedding band. There are more options than ever for men. You’ll likely be wearing your ring a lot, so don’t make it an afterthought.
Start with the basics
You can go plain or fancy, subdued or add a little flash. To start, get acquainted with the traditional metals for wedding bands. Yellow gold in 18K, 14K or 10K is a classic choice, and never looks dated. If you prefer white, look at white gold, platinum or palladium. Also consider rose gold, which is always unique and romantic. You may choose to match your band to your partner’s, but there’s no rule that says you must.
There are also different shapes in bands — some are wide and flat, while others are more round. The rounder shape is a little more traditional, while the flatter rings look modern.
Out of the ordinary
Men’s bands are also available in your choice of alternative metals. These non-traditional materials are strong, lightweight and durable. Metals to look for are stainless steel, titanium, tungsten carbide and cobalt alloys.
- Stainless steel is strong and durable.
- Titanium is hypoallergenic, light and incredibly strong. You’ll find it in gray and black and in finishes from matte to high-gloss. Its high strength, though, means a titanium ring can’t be resized.
- Tungsten carbide is also remarkably strong, retains its finish and, like titanium, can’t be resized. It can also be found in black, white and gray.
- Cobalt alloys are durable and naturally white. Highly scratch resistant, it also doesn't chip or shatter and is hypo-allergenic. Cobalt looks and feels similar to white gold but usually costs less.
You can opt for high-gloss on your metal or choose from a range of finishes, including matte, satin or frost (a lot like interior paint!). Each finish makes its own statement. Ask your jeweler to show you examples to get an idea of how it looks.
You can also add subtle or more noticeable touches to a plain band. Milgrain is a band with tiny rows of beads added to the edges of the ring. Engraving on the outer band of names, initials or a design will also get more notice.
Also consider mixing metals or colors, like a yellow gold accent on a cobalt alloy ring or two colors of gold.
The bling ring
Diamonds are not just a girl’s best friend. Diamonds in men’s wedding bands are increasingly popular. Some men’s bands have one as a centerpiece, a row on top or around the entire band. Neil Lane has designs that place the diamonds on the profile of the ring.
Your wedding band is a symbol that links you to your partner — but it’s also jewelry that you’ll wear for a long time. Take your time and visit your jeweler to get a better idea of all your options. You’ll find the right one — just like you found the right partner!