The wedding will last a day, but you’ll be wearing your wedding ring forever. That’s a lot of pressure! Make sure you pick a ring that both looks good and works with your lifestyle. There’s plenty to consider:
What kind of metal?
Options range from yellow, white and rose gold to platinum, titanium, palladium, tungsten…Usually the bride will choose her wedding ring to be in the same metal as her engagement ring. If the wearer has allergies, platinum, palladium or titanium are all hypoallergenic. Platinum, though one of the most expensive, is also one of the most durable. Gold wears out faster – take this into consideration if you’re in the medical field or work somewhere where you wash your hands a lot. The Knot’s guide to ring metals explains the different metal options. Also check out this guide on eBay, which explains which metals are best by weight and strength to help you pick a metal that’s right for your lifestyle.
What style and size do you prefer?
Simple wedding rings can be distinguished by a few basic characteristics. They can be square-edged (sometimes called “flat”) or rounded (sometimes called “comfort fit” if the inside is rounded, too). They can be polished, hammered or brushed, which refers to the texture of the metal. Also consider size – the width of the metal itself – which is measured in millimeters. Women’s rings are usually two to four millimeters; men’s are typically six to eight millimeters.
Will you wear it with your engagement ring all the time?
If not, skip to the next question. If so, make sure you remember that you’ll want your wedding ring to fit snugly against the engagement ring. If the engagement ring has a big stone or isn’t perfectly round, you may need to get something custom made, which can take from a few weeks to a month or more. This is important to consider early on, since many couples wait until three months or less before the wedding to order rings. You’ll also want styles that work well together. Check out Brides.com’s guide for picking a band that works with your engagement ring. For example, it you have a pavé engagement ring, it will work well with a simple, gem-free band. Or if you have a solitaire engagement ring, you may want a pavé band for added sparkle.
Ethical and environmental concerns?
At this point, many people have heard of conflict diamonds, but did you know that mining precious metals can also be environmentally and socially damaging? Whether your wedding ring will have gems or is only metal, you may be interested in buying ethically-sourced jewelry. This usually means fair labor practices, socially responsible harvesting techniques and/or environmental offsets. Other options include lab-grown gems and recycled metal. Brilliant Earth is one of the best known ethical jewelers in the market, but there are actually quite a few. For more information about ethically sourced gems and metals, check out this article from EthicalBride.com.