Men often find the process of choosing a wedding band a little daunting. The jewelry terminology can be foreign and the seemingly endless range of bands can make it hard to know where to start and what to choose.
It is important though that you know what to look for when choosing your wedding band. After all, it's a band that you will be wearing for a very long time, so it's important that you choose a band that is not only appropriate for your lifestyle and your personality but one that is comfortable to wear and fits within your budget.
We'd love to be able to give you a magical mathmatical formula to determine your ideal wedding band, though, after 30 years of providing wedding band advice, we've found that everyone is unique and has their own tastes and preferences.
However, we can give you the 7 top tips to consider when choosing a men's wedding band. From these top 7 tips you'll more easily be able to choose the right wedding band for you.
We've noticed that men will often jump straight to finding the right the band design, though considering other important factors first will make your choice a lot simpler by narrowing down the selection of bands to those that will be best for you and your lifestyle.
These 7 considerations for choosing your men's wedding band will help you:
Every one is different. A band design that appeals to one person, may not appeal to another, just as a band design that works well with one person's lifestyle may not be appropriate for another person's lifestyle.
You need to consider what effect your lifestyle will have on your wedding band. Consider the following questions together with any other facets of your lifestyle that will play a part in your choosing your men's wedding band.
Can you wear your wedding band whilst you work?Are there special requirements for the type of band that you can wear at work? Are you a mechanic, tradesman or working with machinery and equipment that could get caught on a band? Do you need a band that can be cut-off from your finger in the case of an emergency?
Do you work with your hands - will manual labour be tuff on your band?
Are you a gardener or tradesman or does your work or hobby involve being tough on your hands, and thereby tough on your band? If you answered yes, you may be best not to wear your band whilst performing those activities. Though if you are planning to wear your band at those times, you need to consider whether your band can stand up to that harsher treatment.
Will you wear your wedding band everyday?
When possible, most men choose to wear their wedding band every day. Though there are some jobs where it's not possible to wear your band to work, or some men prefer not to wear their wedding band every day.
Some men are not able to wear a band to work due to the harsh treatment that they expect their work may give to their band or because they are prohibited from wearing a band at work due to safety standards.
The men who wear their wedding band only the weekends and special occasions often choose a band that's a little more unusual because they like to enjoy the band whilst they do wear it and they are not limited just to band designs suited to their lifestyle.
Some men also choose to wear their wedding band on a neck chain when they cannot wear it on their finger. If you plan to wear your wedding band on a chain, you will need to make sure that the type of band is suitable to be worn on a chain (for example woven or more intricate bands are not as suitable to be worn on a chain).
Will you play sport whilst wearing your wedding band?
Do you rock climb, play football, basketball or surf? For sports that could be rough on your band we recommend that you not wear your wedding band whilst playing that sport.
If you do plan to wear your band during sport, you will need to make sure that the band is suitable.
If your work or hobbies will be rough on your band and you plan to wear your band when carrying out those activities you should look to have a band that will better be able to handle that treatment. See the information below in the 'band design section' to help you further with your band design options.
A wedding band is not only a symbol of your love, it is also a fashion accessory that will be with you for a long time. So you need to choose a band that reflects your personality, rather than a band style that may be a passing fashion or is picked up at a discount sale.
You will appreciate your wedding band more if you put a little thought into it.
Are you a simple no-frills type of guy?
Then the classic gold wedding band may appeal. Though there are many types of simple bands. The width and shape of the band can make bands look quite different. There are also many options available to make your simple wedding band more comfortable for you. See the comfort tip below.
Do you like the idea of having something a little different - but not too different?
There are many options available for the man who does not want a simple gold wedding band, but who doesn't want an overly flashy band either.
Perhaps a twist on the simple wedding band is for you. What about a band with ribbed edges, a white gold inlay stripe, a satin finish textured band rather than a polished texture, a two-tone band with yellow and white gold or a woven pattern. There are many subtle yet stylish options available.
Is your fiance encouraging you to choose something a little different but you're not yet convinced?
You may be surprised to learn that many men are choosing to move beyond the traditional gold wedding band in search of something just a touch different. Why not consider a wedding band that is still simple, but a little more than the traditional gold band. What about a band with ribbed edges, a white gold inlay stripe, a satin finish textured band, a two-tone band or a woven pattern? There are many subtle yet stylish options available.
Are you an engineer or technically minded person who is looking for the latest technology?
Titanium, a high technology metal used in the latest scientific breakthroughs is the top choice for this group. Or, what about a tungsten band? Tungsten carbide is a highly scratch resistant metal which is also favoured by this group of men. Or what about a band that uses the latest laser technology in the band's construction, such as a wave style or fusion band that combines different gold types in unique patterns.
Are you bold and daring?
Then something different to what you normally see may appeal. Perhaps a custom designed titanium band, a band incorporating unusual metals such as tungsten or platinum or a two-tone band with a combination of two metals such as white and yellow gold, or rose and white gold. What about an unusual shape such as a puzzle band or jigsaw puzzle band?
Does your cultural or ethnic background make a particular type of band style appealing to you?
If you have Italian heritage a diamond wedding band may appeal.
Many men are concerned that a wedding band will not be comfortable to wear. This concern normally stems from the fact that many men have not worn a band before.
Men's wedding bands can be comfortable to wear if you know what to look for. Consider these two factors, the shape of the band and the band width.
First, look for a band design that has softly rounded edges, rather than sharp angular edges. This does not mean that a flat band style cannot be comfortable. A flat band can still have a good construction where the edge of the band is made with a very gentle rounded inside edge.
Next, consider the inside curve the of band. The inside of a band should have a gentle curve on the inside edges of the band. This soft internal curve will make the band feel more comfortable on your finger.
Another option is a soft fit band, which has softly curved edges on the band, though not a completely curved inside surface in the band.
Something that is also a popular choice for men's bands is a band made with a comfort curve. A comfort curve refers to the inside of a band, not the outside. So it is possible to have a comfort curve with a band that is flat on the outside surface.
A comfort curve is a band that is curved on the inside of the band, rather than having a more flat surface on the inside of the band.
When considering band width, factors to consider include the size and length of your fingers and your personal preference. Often men with larger hands or longer fingers choose an average width band or a slightly wider band. Men with smaller hands or more slender fingers often choose a 5mm band or a slightly narrower band.
Men's wedding bands are usually wider than a ladies wedding band and most men choose a band width of between 5mm and 7mm with 6mm and 7mm being the more popular widths.
If you are interested in a band wider than 7mm you will need to note that very wide bands can be a little more uncomfortable to wear than a narrower band.
If you choose a wider band style you will also need to consider the finger size that you will need. Wider bands can be tighter on the finger than a narrower band would be.
For a band width of 8mm or wider you may need to choose a slightly larger finger size (perhaps a 1/4 US size or a 1/2 a British or Australian size larger). Most finger size measurements are made on quite narrow sizing bands, so when you have your finger size measured by a jeweler you should let them know the width of the band that you are interested in, so that they can factor in the width of your band when determining the best finger size for you.
The metals that can be used to make men's wedding bands include gold, titanium, platinum and silver. The information below will help you choose the metal to use for your wedding band.
Gold is the most popular choice for men's wedding bands.
There are two things to consider when choosing a gold men's wedding band. Which gold carat to choose and gold color or what combination of gold colors you would like.
The gold carats normally used in men's wedding bands are 9ct, 14ct and 18ct. The higher the proportion of gold used in the final metal, the more valuable and expensive the metal will be. So all other things being the same, an 18ct band will be more expensive than a 14ct band and a 14ct band will be more expensive than a 9ct band.
Many people consider the hardness and durability of gold when choosing a men's wedding band.
Metal hardness is measured by what is called the Vickers scale where harder metals receive a higher Vickers score than less hard metals.
9ct has a Vickers hardness of 120 and 18ct has a Vickers hardness of 125. This shows 18ct as harder, though the difference is so slight that in practical terms 9ct and 18ct are much the same in terms of hardness.
9ct is more difficult to bend and is a little more springy than 18ct and therefore a fine 9ct band may be less likely to bend out of shape than a fine 18ct band. However, if the band is of a good sturdy construction neither metal will be likely to bend out of shape.
9ct, 14ct and 18ct gold are each relatively hard and durable metals and are suitable for every day wear and use in men's wedding bands.
Next you need to consider the color of the gold.
Gold is available in several different colors. The most popular is yellow gold, followed by white gold and rose gold, though other gold colors are sometimes also available such as bronze, peach, red and lime gold.
As each gold color contains the same proportion of pure gold, all gold colors that have the same carat will have the same Vickers score.
When comparing the price of the gold colors in the same carat, white gold is normally a little more expensive than yellow gold and rose gold. Yellow gold and rose gold normally have approximately the same price.
When trying to decide between the gold carat types there are three things to consider.
In practical terms, 18ct generally holds up to everyday wear better than 9ct and 14ct and 18ct tends to look better than 9ct and 14ct as it ages over the years. This is one of the reasons why 18ct is normally preferred for ladies engagement bands rather than 9ct.
14ct is halfway between 9ct and 18ct in these respects.
There is a difference in the color of different gold carats. To see more information about the difference in color click here.
18ct is the superior metal for men's wedding bands provided that the band is not a lightweight construction (Gillett's Jewellers bands are a good construction).
However, 18ct is more expensive than 14ct and 9ct, which in a large men's band can be a noticeable difference.
For a wedding band that you wear every day of your life it is worth the difference in price and we accordingly recommend that 18ct be selected whenever it fits within your budget.
Also regarding the need to resize your gold wedding band, a simple gold wedding band can normally be resized in the future by a local jeweler. A gold band with ribbed edges, a wave or woven pattern or engraving may be more difficult to resize without affecting the band pattern.
If you find a 9ct men's wedding band that you would like made in 18ct, please send us an e-mail to email@example.com and we can provide a price for you.
Titanium is a natural element which has a silver-greyish-white color. Titanium is the hardest natural metal in the world.
It is very strong, three times the strength of steel and much stronger than gold, silver and platinum and yet is very light weight. Pure titanium is also 100% hypoallergenic which means that it if safe for anyone to wear as it will not react to your skin.
Titanium provides several unique factors that make it a good metal for bands. It is very strong, more dent, bend and scratch resistant than gold, silver and platinum, is lightweight and importantly offers an exotic array of colors which other metals do not.
One factor to consider with titanium is that titanium cannot be soldered, which means that titanium bands cannot normally be resized.
Titanium bands made using pure titanium can normally be cutoff the finger in the event of an emergency, though they are more difficult to cut-off than gold, silver or platinum bands. Aircraft grade titanium bands normally cannot be cut-off in the event of an emergency.
Platinum is a white metal, but unlike gold it is used in jewelry in almost its pure form (approximately 95% pure). Platinum is extremely long wearing and is very white, so it does not need to be rhodium plated like white gold.
Platinum is a very dense, heavy metal, so a platinum band will feel heavier than an 18ct gold band.
Platinum is however significantly more expensive than gold. All other things being the same, a platinum band will be approximately twice the price of an 18ct white gold band (not including gemstones).
The selection of men's wedding bands made in platinum is generally smaller than the ranges available for gold and titanium bands.
Platinum bands can be cut-off the finger in the event of an emergency.
Tungsten carbire, commonly referred to as tungsten, is a new technology metal that is becoming increasingly popular in men's wedding bands.
Tungsten is a very hard, strong and durable metal which is highly scratch resistant.
Tungsten is less expensive than gold and platinum and is comparable in price to titanium.
Tungsten has a grey-white color, similar to that of white gold or titanium.
Tungsten bands are highly scratch resistant which is their primary benefit when compared to other metals such as gold, platinum and even titanium which can scratch. So having a tungsten wedding band that's scratch resistant offers a lot of advantages.
Tungsten bands also have what's called a permanent polish, which means that they always look new and bright and shiny. They don't need to be repolished, which is another benefit over other metals.
Tungsten also has a heavy weight, which makes the band feel more solid and many men prefer the heavier weight of tungsten bands.
One important point with tungsten bands is that they cannot be resized, because they cannot be cut and resoldered. This means that you need to have your finger size accurately measured before ordering a tungsten wedding band.View tungsten wedding bands
Sterling silver is a white-grey colored metal which is less expensive than gold, platinum and titanium.
Silver is a softer metal than gold, titanium, tungsten and platinum and does not have hardness that the other metals do. Silver is also more prone to oxidisation, sometimes causing the silver to turn black. For these reasons silver jewelry is best worn as dress jewelry, worn occasionally and is not generally recommended for everyday wear over an extended period of time. It is therefore not recommended to be used for a wedding band.
You should note that all metals (except tungsten) will scratch. That includes gold, platinum, silver and titanium. Titanium and platinum are more scratch resistant that gold and silver, though they will still scratch.
So scratches on your wedding band is something that is part of wearing a band. If the band you choose has a polished finish, you can have your band re-polished by a local jeweler. We suggest that bands be polished about each 12 months or so, or sooner if you prefer.
A textured band finish such as a satin finish texture or a band with detailed engraving can help to lessen the appearance of scratching from wear.
Are you hoping to wear a matching wedding band?
Couples sometimes choose to wear matching wedding bands. This can be a romantic touch, though it will limit the options that you can choose from. You would then need to take into account all of the above factors for you and your fianc? and importantly you will need to consider the types of bands that your fianc? can wear with her engagement band. Some ladies engagement bands need to have curved fitted bands specially made to match their wedding band, so if that is the case for your fianc?'s band, it would generally be best to not have matching bands.
For these reasons couples sometimes prefer to choose a band with some similar features, such as the same metal type, a similar pattern or another feature in common.
It is acceptable for a men's wedding band to include diamonds and gemstones.
The decision to include diamonds or gemstones in your band will depend on your personal preference.
You should consider the type of work that you do and the sports you play when considering gemstones. Gemstone settings can be affected and the risk of a gemstone being lost will be increased if the band is knocked around through manual labour and some sporting activities.
You should also consider the type of gemstones that are suitable to be worn in wedding bands. Some gemstones are more fragile than others and are not suited to be worn everyday. The gemstones that are suitable to be worn in wedding bands are diamonds, sapphires (all colors of sapphires including blue, black, pink, orange, green and yellow) and rubies.
We do not suggest that opal bands be worn as wedding bands, as opals are a more fragile gemstone.
Traditionally men preferred simple gold wedding bands to symbolise their love. Though over the last 15 years men have increasingly been moving away from the traditional gold wedding band towards something a little different.
Types of band styles include simple bands made in all yellow gold, all white gold, platinum, or titanium or tungsten; bands with inlay stripes or ribbed edges; bands with diamonds or gemstones; bands with unique patterns; two-tone bands with a combination of metal types, and woven or wave band styles.
When considering lifestyle factors and band designs you should note that a woven, puzzle or heavily patterned band could be damaged whilst playing sport or working with your hands. A band with diamonds or gemstones may be at greater risk of having the gem settings damaged and potentially loosing a gemstone.
Hopefully this information will help you to choose the right wedding band for you.
Choose from the wide range of men's wedding bands available at Gillett's Jewellers.