Understanding the options for wedding bands can be mystifying, so it’s important to know what you’re looking and paying for. Platinum remains the most popular choice. It’s hard, white and hypo-allergenic and has historically been the most expensive metal, although the price of platinum has recently dropped, making it more affordable. Palladium is a cousin of platinum and is lighter and less rare so less expensive. It’s also white, durable and hypo-allergenic. Gold can come in many shades, including white, yellow and rose, and is an increasingly popular choice. When opting for gold, choose a wedding band in the same carat as your engagement ring, so they match in color and wear evenly. Titanium is lightweight, extremely strong and is an up-and-comer for men’s rings.
Q. What’s the significance of the wedding ring?
A. The circular shape symbolizes never-ending love; the ring itself is a tangible symbol of commitment.
Q. Does it have to match the engagement ring? A. It’s an option, but not necessary. If your engagement ring is unique (perhaps it’s an heirloom or made of a colored stone in the style of a cocktail ring) and can stand alone, your wedding band can be something entirely different. Once you’re married, the engagement ring can become more of a special occasion ring, worn as often as you like, on your other hand.
Q. How do we choose our wedding bands?
A. Style, comfort and your lifestyle matter most. First, pick a style that looks good on your finger. A band that’s narrower in back than in front tends to be more comfortable than one that’s the same width all around. If you actively use your hands all day at work, make sure your ring won’t get in the way by choosing something simple.
Q. What if we’re on a tight budget but want to make a statement with our rings?
A. Look for bands fashioned from less expensive metals, such as 14k yellow or white gold. You might also consider adding rows of micropaved diamonds to your wedding band. Micropave offers maximum sparkle (it looks like glitter) at very affordable prices.
If you love color, consider a design that includes small semi-precious stones such as aquamarine (blue), citrine (yellow), peridot (green) or amethyst (purple) — stones that are in fashion now.
Q. What if we want something truly unique?
A. Today, anyone can design their own rings with the help of a good jeweler, or by looking online at established, brand-name web sites. The easiest way to personalize? Have your jeweler inscribe both your names or initials and your wedding date into your bands.
Q. What are some popular styles on the market right now?
A. Filigree is increasingly popular because it offers intricate metal-work to add definition and character without necessarily relying on priceless gems. Interesting finishes add similar depth and interest.