Choosing the perfect men's wedding band is a decision that deserves careful consideration, as it's a piece of jewelry that will be worn every day, and often the only piece of jewelry that most men wear. Selecting the perfect wedding band requires careful consideration of material preferences, your partner’s style, and budget.
When it comes to men’s wedding bands, there are almost endless options in terms of both style and materials. First, let’s talk about materials:
Gold: Gold is a classic material used in the majority of jewelry, and for good reason. It is incredibly versatile and comes in many different variations–both karat and color. Some of the most popular are 10kt, 14kt, and 18kt. The karat (kt, for short) refers to the amount of pure (24kt) gold in the jewelry. When each type is made, the 24kt gold is combined with different alloys, which also contributes to the metal color. The higher the amount of 24kt in the jewelry the softer it is, so for everyday wear we would recommend 14kt (as opposed to 18kt) as it tends to hold up better. In regards to color options, there is yellow, white, rose, and even green gold!
- Yellow gold has a rich history. It was the only metal worn dating back to ancient Egypt, where it was softened and hammered into different types of jewelry worn only by the elite–since it was seen as a luxury item. White gold wasn’t invented until much later when it was found that by combining gold with other metals, it becomes stronger and also happens to change the color.
- White gold doesn’t have as lengthy of a history as yellow gold, since it didn’t become popular until the 19th century. Even so, it is now seen more often as the trendy choice for engagement rings and wedding bands, especially among celebrities. It is for this reason that a lot of people tend to choose white gold over yellow gold.
- Over the past several years, the popularity of rose gold has risen. Rose gold gets its pink hue from gold being alloyed with copper.
Platinum: Platinum is a strong metal choice for wedding bands, as it doesn’t dent easily and it is a great option for stone security if you choose to set any stones in your band. It is naturally white and hypoallergenic, so if you are allergic to gold or any alloys, it’s a safe option. It does tend to feel heavy on the hand, so for men looking for a hefty band, they should definitely consider platinum.
Alternative Metals: Lightweight and durable metals like titanium, tungsten, and zirconium have become popular for men with active lifestyles, as they feel very light on the hand and have a contemporary look. Many companies are now combining alternative metals with other materials, such as meteorite and wood, to create completely custom bands.
Keep in mind that mixing different metal types is a great way to customize any men’s band. An outgoing groom might consider a wedding band with different metals, something unique for the artistic groom-to-be. The mix of colored metals brings a creative and artsy quality to the piece of jewelry.
Now that we’ve covered the vast array of materials available when shopping for a men’s wedding band, let’s talk about personal style, which may be one of the most important aspects. You want to make sure that you choose a band that your partner will want to wear daily, so it must reflect his personality.
Classic Band: If you’re thinking that a plain metal band is just a plain metal band, you’re wrong. They can be tapered or not tapered, flat, round, half round, comfort fit (has a rounded inside so the ring is more comfortable to wear), beveled, etc.
You can also choose a band with multiple metals such as different gold colors, or mixing alternative metals. Adding engraving is another great way to customize a band without adding stones. Classic bands come in a wide number of variations–not limited to metal finishes (high polish, satin, sandblast, hammer, florentine, etc.) and width–with the most common men’s bands being approximately 5 - 7mm wide.
For example, the domed style of many men’s wedding bands is sleek, unobtrusive, and classically masculine. This style is best for men who are reserved, in other words it's ideal for the introspective and introverted type. The domed style is also perfect for a man who is not used to wearing jewelry.
Gemstone Band: If you’re shopping for a man who appreciates a little glitz, you might want to opt for a men’s wedding band that incorporates a colored gemstone. For the less adventurous, there's always the traditional diamond.
You can choose to have one central stone–similar to an engagement ring–or multiple smaller stones set in any pattern of your choosing. Some stones that are most popular for men’s bands are colored diamonds and sapphires, but you may want to consider a birthstone that is significant to your relationship.
Custom Bands: Designing a custom band is a great choice if you don’t see anything that speaks to you, or if you just want to create something completely unique that represents your relationship. It may sound daunting, but with the right jeweler, it can be a fun process, and Mark Schneider Fine Jewelry can guide you through it.
If you’re considering designing a custom men’s band for your fiancé, you may also want to consider matching it to your engagement ring. Of course, we don’t mean a perfect match, but there are subtle ways to match rings. You can choose to use the same metal type and color, have the same metal finish, or engrave a special message on the inside of the ring. You can also choose to set similar stones in the same setting style.
Knowing what you want in a band is only part of the battle when it comes to purchasing a men’s wedding band. One of the most important aspects is budget. The price for a wedding band can range greatly, meaning you can spend anywhere from $100 to $10,000 (and beyond) depending upon what you’re looking for. When determining your budget, you should consider your income, as well as other expenses you’ll incur in the near future, including your wedding expenses.
In general, designing a custom ring with multiple metal and stone types would likely be priced on the higher end. If you’re looking to spend on the lower end, alternative metals tend to be less expensive than gold and platinum. Being realistic about your budget, while also getting the men’s band of your dreams, can be tricky, but it’s important to consider all factors when planning for this important purchase.
Selecting the perfect men's wedding band is a significant decision that involves a thoughtful blend of personal style, practical considerations, and budget. It is important to pick something that is exciting but remains within the groom’s comfort zone. It’s good to push the limits of style, but with a big purchase like this, it is important to invest in a unique ring that resembles both the individual and the couple.
Male wedding bands are a way for men to show their style each day and it shouldn’t be taken for granted. Please keep in mind that your wedding band is not just a piece of jewelry, but also a representation of your relationship. This makes it well worth the time and effort required to choose it wisely.