A number of precious metals are used to create beautiful rings. Platinum and gold are two of the most well-known, but this does not mean they are the only options available. One popular alternative is tungsten, which is a rare metal that is found naturally on Earth. Although this metal is becoming increasingly popular, there’s still a lot that people don’t know about tungsten. Here’s everything you need to know before purchasing tungsten rings:
How Tungsten Rings Are Made
Similar to gold, it’s not possible to make a ring out of pure tungsten. Instead, jewelers typically combine tungsten with carbon to create a more malleable substance that can be molded into the shape of a ring. Therefore, a tungsten ring is never solely made out of tungsten. Most rings are about 85% tungsten and 15% carbon.
The Different Colors of Tungsten
Tungsten rings are available in several sleek and sophisticated colors. Most tungsten rings are gunmetal gray, however silver-white tungsten rings are readily available as well. The former has an edgy and unique appearance, whereas the latter looks similar to high-end metals such as platinum and white gold.
Some jewelers sell tungsten rings in black as well. There’s no doubt that black tungsten is a modern and eye-catching metal, but it may not be the best choice. The tungsten-carbon alloy that is used to create jewelry is not naturally black, so jewelers must plate the metal with a black substance to give it this color. Over time, this plating may start to wear off, which means these rings are not as durable as silver-white or gunmetal gray tungsten rings. If you want your ring to hold up over time, it’s best to stick with gunmetal gray or silver-white tungsten.
The Durability of Tungsten
Tungsten is one of the hardest precious metals in the world, which is one of the reasons why it is so appealing to men. Because of its hardness, tungsten has a high resistance to scratches, making it perfect for men who work with their hands on a regular basis.
Even though tungsten is durable, it is not completely indestructible. Softer metals such as gold are malleable, so they bend under pressure rather than breaking into a million pieces. Tungsten’s hardness makes it brittle, so it could break or shatter if it is dropped on the floor or hit against a hard surface. If tungsten does break or shatter, there is nothing that can be done to repair it, so it will need to be replaced. It’s important to keep this in mind when deciding if a tungsten ring is right for your lifestyle.
Resizing Tungsten Rings
Since tungsten rings are so durable, people often wear them for decades. But, this can be difficult if your ring size changes over the years. Why? Tungsten rings are not malleable and they are incredibly brittle. For these reasons, it is impossible to resize a tungsten ring. If a jeweler attempted to resize a tungsten ring, the metal would shatter beyond repair. This means your only option is buying a new ring if your old one no longer fits comfortably on your finger.
It is possible to insert a small ring size adjuster inside the band to create a tighter fit. But of course, this option is only available to people who want to go down a size or two, not for those who want to make the band bigger.
Personalizing A Tungsten Ring
Tungsten rings are too brittle to be resized, but fortunately, engraving will not damage or break this metal. Most jewelers will engrave tungsten rings on-site or send them to a third party vendor instead. Either way, it isn’t hard to personalize your tungsten ring with a meaningful message, date, or pair of initials.
The Comfort of Wearing Tungsten
Tungsten is dense, so it is heavier than other metals. Some men prefer heavier metals because it means the ring is solid and sturdy, whereas others may find that the weight of tungsten makes wearing the ring uncomfortable. This is a personal preference, so it’s best to try wearing a tungsten ring for a few minutes to see how you feel about the weight once it’s on your finger.
The Hypoallergenic Properties of Tungsten
Some metals, including gold, are alloys that contain significant amounts of nickel, which is a common allergen. If you are allergic to nickel, wearing a ring that contains this metal can lead to skin irritation and blotchy, unsightly rashes. No one should have to deal with an allergic reaction every time they want to wear their favorite piece of jewelry—and they don’t have to thanks to metals like tungsten. Since tungsten does not contain nickel, it is considered a hypoallergenic metal. People with sensitive skin or metal allergies will not experience any symptoms of an allergic reaction from wearing this beautiful and unique metal.
How to Clean and Care For Tungsten Rings
Tungsten is a fairly low-maintenance precious metal, so you won’t need to spend a lot of time caring for it in order to keep it in good condition. Tungsten can react poorly to certain chemicals, so it’s best to avoid using harsh chemicals when cleaning your ring. All you will need to keep your tungsten ring clean is warm water and a mild soap. Dip a soft cloth into the soapy water and scrub the ring to remove dirt, oils, and other debris. If the ring has an intricate design, use a cotton swab or Q-tip to clean all of the nooks and crannies. Then, rinse the ring under warm water and dry it with a soft, non-abrasive cloth.
Clean your tungsten ring whenever the surface becomes visibly dirty. Since tungsten can react poorly to certain chemicals, it’s also wise to clean your ring if it is ever exposed to harsh chemicals. For example, if you wear your ring while cleaning your kitchen countertops, immediately follow the steps above to clean it and prevent damage.
You may need to polish other pieces of jewelry in your jewelry box to keep them looking as good as new, but that’s not the case with tungsten. This metal will hold onto its shine without being polished on a regular basis.
Purchasing A Tungsten Ring
Many people choose tungsten over other precious metals simply because it is so affordable. Tungsten looks very similar to platinum and white gold, but it comes without the hefty price tag. The price of a tungsten ring will depend on a number of factors, including the retailer and design elements. But in general, tungsten rings are sold for a few hundred dollars, whereas platinum and white gold rings can cost thousands. This is a significant difference in price that is enough to convince many shoppers to give tungsten a try and get the look of platinum or white gold for less!
The Resale Value of Tungsten Rings
Tungsten is not as rare and therefore not as valuable as other precious metals, including platinum and gold. It is not as well known as these metals either. As a result, tungsten does not have the same resale value as platinum or white gold. If you want to purchase jewelry that can be resold in the future at a high price, tungsten is probably not the best choice. So, although the ring may cost less upfront, it will be hard to resell it in the future. However, tungsten’s popularity is fairly new, so it’s possible that the resale value of this metal will rise as its popularity continues to grow.
Popular Tungsten Ring Settings
Tungsten rings come in a wide variety of styles that appeal to a diverse audience. People who are shopping for a classic and traditional ring will love a simple tungsten band with a polished finish. Some of these simple bands feature unexpected details such as beveled edges or milgrain borders.
Traditional bands are timeless choices that will never go out of style. But, if you want something a bit more unique, there are plenty of tungsten rings to choose from. Many tungsten rings are designed with inlays, which are different materials that are embedded into the band. Tungsten rings with wood inlays are elegant and stylish choices for the modern man, whereas rings with opal inlays are perfect for men who love to turn heads and set trends. There are also rings designed with camouflage inlays to honor the wearer’s love for hunting or military service.
If you want a more refined look, choose a ring that is designed with both tungsten and gold. The soft and delicate look of rose gold contrasts beautifully with the sleek masculinity of tungsten. Adding a single sparkling black diamond is another way to create a polished and unforgettable look. Tungsten is a versatile metal, so the design options are endless. This makes it easier for men to find a tungsten ring that complements their personal style.
At this point, you should have the information you need to determine if a tungsten ring is right for you. Now, it’s time to start the search for the perfect tungsten ring. Happy hunting!