The Ultimate Wedding Ring Buying Guide

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Feeling like getting hitched? Here’s how to choose a wedding ring!

Choosing a wedding ring is one of the most significant purchases you'll make in your life. 

It's a symbol of your love and commitment to your partner, and it's something that you'll wear every day for the rest of your life. 

As a luxury jeweler, we’ve helped many couples find the perfect wedding ring, and we understand that the process can be overwhelming. 

To give you a helping hand, we’ll answer some common questions before buying a wedding ring and provide tips on choosing the perfect ring.

Enjoy the process because the big day will be here before you know it!

Who Buys the Rings?

Traditionally, the groom is responsible for buying the bride's wedding ring, and the bride is responsible for buying the groom's wedding ring.

The same goes for same-sex couples or non-binary couples. Basically, buy for each other!

However, nowadays, many couples choose to buy the wedding rings together, especially if they want to ensure that their rings complement each other. 

It can be a fun day out together or an evening browsing the web with a glass of red in hand!

How Much Should You Spend on a Ring?

The amount you should spend on a wedding ring is entirely up to you. The general rule of thumb is to spend about two to three months' salary on a ring, but this is just a guideline, not a hard and fast rule.

And this tip usually refers to the engagement ring rather than the wedding ring, but some folks like to use this thinking as a guide.

But don’t feel pressured to spend more than you can afford!

You should choose a ring that fits your budget and your style. Remember, the ring symbolizes your love and commitment to each other, so it's not about how much you spend on it.

If you want a more expensive ring, but your budget doesn’t currently accommodate it, you can always upgrade your wedding ring later!

Should You Shop as a Couple for Wedding Rings?

Shopping for wedding rings as a couple can be a great way to ensure you both get rings that complement each other.

You can discuss the styles, colors, and designs you like, and find a ring that represents your love for each other. 

It can also be a fun experience and a way to bond with your partner during the wedding planning process.

Tips for Choosing the Perfect Ring

  1. Start Early: It's never too early to start looking for a wedding ring. You want to give yourself plenty of time to find the perfect ring, so don't wait until the last minute.
  2. Set a Budget: Before you start shopping, set a budget for your wedding rings. This will help you narrow your options and ensure you don't overspend.
  3. Consider Your Lifestyle: When choosing a wedding ring, consider your lifestyle. If you have an active lifestyle, choose a durable ring that can withstand wear and tear.
  4. Choose a Style: Choose a style that you love and that represents your personality. Whether you prefer a classic, timeless style or something more modern and unique, find a wedding ring style that will be perfect for you.
  5. Think About the Metal: Wedding rings come in various metals, including gold, platinum, and white gold. Each metal has its own unique properties, so choose the one that works best for you.
  6. Get the Right Fit: It's important to ensure your wedding ring fits comfortably on your finger. Ensure your finger is measured by a professional jeweler to ensure your ring fits perfectly. 

Choosing a wedding ring is an exciting and memorable experience. 

As a jeweler, we believe that the perfect ring is the one that represents everything you mean to one another.

By following these simple tips and considering your style and lifestyle, you'll find sensational wedding rings you'll cherish forever.

If you’re still feeling the wedding jitters about choosing a wedding ring, let’s break it down into a little more detail for you…

What metal do you both prefer? 

When it comes to choosing a wedding ring, the metal you choose is an important consideration. Potentially the most crucial consideration!

The metal not only affects the overall look of the wedding ring but also determines the durability, maintenance, and cost.

Some of the most popular metals for wedding rings are yellow gold, platinum, titanium, tantalum, tungsten, rose gold, and white gold. 

Let’s assess the benefits of choosing each metal, so you can make an informed decision.

Yellow Gold

Yellow gold is a classic and timeless metal that has been a popular choice for wedding rings for centuries.

It's a soft and malleable metal, making it easy to work with and perfect for intricate designs. Yellow gold is available in 10K, 14K, 18K, and 22K, but what’s the difference?

14K is the most durable and affordable option. Some designers do offer a less expensive 10K option, but it’s the least pure gold available so it’s always best going for 14K which is the most popular.

It's a warm and flattering metal that complements all skin tones, and it's relatively easy to maintain with regular cleaning and polishing.

We recommend avoiding 18k and above if you or your partner use your hands a lot for work or typing all day.

This is because they’re purer gold, making them softer and more likely to scratch, tarnish or warp. Though, it’s hard to find many wedding rings made of 22k gold and above because of this factor. 

Platinum

This is a wedding favorite!

Platinum is a rare and luxurious metal known for its durability and hypoallergenic properties.

It's a heavy and dense metal, making it perfect for men's wedding rings, and it has a bright, white sheen that doesn't tarnish or fade. 

Platinum is a popular choice for engagement rings and wedding bands because of its strength and resistance to wear and tear.

It's also a great option for sensitive skin, as it contains no nickel.

Sensitive skin and nickel do not get along!

Titanium

Titanium is a lightweight and durable metal that has become increasingly popular for wedding rings in recent years.

It's a hypoallergenic metal and most resistant to corrosion, scratches, and dents, making it perfect for those with active lifestyles.

Titanium is available in a range of colors, including black, blue, and gray, and it's affordable and easy to maintain. 

It's a great option for those looking for a modern and masculine wedding ring or something gender-neutral!

Tantalum

Tantalum is a rare and unique metal that’s becoming more popular for wedding rings!

It's a hypoallergenic metal that is durable, difficult to scratch, and lightweight.

Tantalum has a beautiful, dark, and lustrous sheen that resembles platinum, and it's a great option for those looking for something different from traditional metals like gold and white gold.

Tungsten

Tungsten is a strong and durable metal that is scratch-resistant and virtually indestructible - hopefully, like your marriage!

It's a popular choice for men's wedding rings because of its masculine look and the fact that it's almost impossible to scratch or dent.

Tungsten is also available in various colors, including black and gray, and it's relatively affordable.

However, it's important to note that tungsten rings cannot be resized, so getting the right size is important when purchasing.

Rose Gold

Rose gold is a beautiful and romantic metal that has become increasingly popular for wedding rings in recent years. Thanks, Instagram!

It's a soft, malleable metal with a warm, flattering pinkish hue. Rose gold is available in 10K, 14K and 18K, with 14K being the most durable and affordable option.

10K is available from some designers, but if you want a ring designed to last a lifetime and have a bit of extra money to spare, we’d recommend 14K rose gold.

It's a great option for those looking for a vintage or feminine wedding ring. 

White Gold

Last but certainly not least, it’s undoubtedly one of the most popular choices for wedding rings!

White gold is a popular alternative to platinum, offering a similar look at a lower cost.

It's a durable, hypoallergenic metal with a bright, reflective white sheen. White gold is available in 10K, 14K and 18K, with 14K being the most durable and affordable option. 

However, it's important to note that white gold is often coated with rhodium to give it a brighter white finish, which may wear off over time and require maintenance and repair from a jeweler.

But don’t worry; this is easily done and affordable, and it usually takes many years before it’s necessary. 

We advise no matter what metal you choose; it’s always good to get your wedding rings cleaned by your jeweler every few years to keep them looking as beautiful as the day you put them on!

What setting to choose? 

Now you’ve finally landed on the metal and color; it’s time to choose a setting.

So many choices - we promise you’re almost done!

Choosing the right setting for your wedding ring is just as important as choosing the right metal.

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The setting affects the overall look of the ring and determines how secure the stone is and how comfortable the ring is to wear. 

Some super-loved settings for wedding rings are prong, bezel, stackable, channel, and split shank. 

Of course, we’ll discuss the benefits of each one - we wouldn’t leave you in the dark like that!

Prong

The Prong setting is the most popular setting for engagement rings and wedding bands. It involves small metal prongs that hold the diamond or gemstones in place.

This setting is popular because it allows the maximum amount of light to pass through the diamond, making it appear brighter and more brilliant.

The prong setting is also versatile and can be used with different-shaped diamonds or gemstones. 

However, the prong setting requires more maintenance than other settings, as the prongs can loosen over time and must be tightened.

Bezel

The Bezel setting involves a metal rim surrounding the diamond or gemstone, holding it securely.

This setting is popular for those who lead an active lifestyle or work with their hands, as it protects the diamond or gemstone from scratches and damage. 

The Bezel setting is also very stylish, giving the wedding ring a modern and sleek look. However, the bezel setting can be more expensive than other settings, as it requires more metal to create the rim.

Stackable

A stackable setting involves two or more rings that can be worn together to create a unique and personalized look.

This setting is popular for those who want to create a customized wedding ring that reflects their personality and style.

 A versatile stackable setting can be mixed and matched with different metals and gemstones to create a unique look.

However, the stackable setting requires more maintenance than other settings, as the rings can rub against each other and cause wear and tear.

Channel

The channel setting involves diamonds or gemstones that are set between two metal channels that run parallel to each other.

This setting is popular for those who want a sleek and modern look to their wedding ring without the prongs or bezels. 

The channel setting is also very secure and provides a smooth surface, making it comfortable to wear.

However, channel setting can be more expensive than other settings, as it requires more metal to create the channels.

Split Shank

A split shank setting involves a band that splits into two or more strands as it approaches the diamond or gemstone. This setting is popular for those who want a unique and intricate design for their wedding ring.

A split shank setting also provides extra support to the diamond or gemstone, making it more secure.

However, a split shank setting can be more expensive than other settings, as, like many settings, it requires more metal to create the strands.

More metal = more money!

Choosing the right metal and setting for your wedding ring is a personal decision that depends on your style, lifestyle, and budget.

Take your time to explore your options and consult a professional to ensure you make the right choice. 

Oh, and you don’t have to have a diamond or gemstone in your wedding rings.

Traditionally, wedding rings were simple plain bands, but you know how these modern times are - people like a bit of extra glamor, so it’s worth some thought!

You’re both wearing these rings for a lifetime, so there’s no need for a hasty decision.

Unless you’ve left the shopping until the last minute, then you may want to read on!

Have you considered a matching set and the width?

Okay, we promise there are only a couple more things to consider - you’re almost there!

Width - Sometimes it matters!

The width of the band can greatly affect the overall look and comfort of the ring. The most common widths for wedding rings are 2mm to 8mm.

Narrow bands, such as 2mm to 4mm, are perfect for those who prefer a more delicate and feminine look.

These bands are also great for smaller hands, as they won't overpower the fingers. Narrow bands are often paired with solitaire or smaller diamond settings, as they complement the delicate look of the band.

Wider bands, such as 6mm to 8mm, are perfect for those who prefer a bolder and more masculine look. These bands are also great for larger hands, as they balance the fingers.

Wider bands are often paired with more intricate settings, such as split shank or channel settings, as they can support the weight and complexity of the setting.

When it comes to choosing the width of your wedding ring, it's important to consider your personal style, hand size, and comfort.

A wedding ring is a piece of jewelry you'll wear every day for the rest of your life, so you want to ensure that it fits well and feels comfortable on your finger.

To Match or Not to Match - That is the question!

The last point!

Do you want a matching set with your partner? Do wedding bands have to match?

A matching set is popular for couples who want to symbolize their unity and commitment to each other. Matching sets can be identical, or they can be variations of the same design.

Matching sets are also a great option for those who want their rings to complement each other.

For example, if one partner chooses a yellow gold band with a diamond, the other can choose a yellow gold band with a similar design or diamond size.

This way, the rings will look cohesive when worn together without being exactly the same!

Choosing the right width and matching set for your wedding ring is a personal decision that depends on your style and preference. 

If you’re still feeling stuck and hate making decisions, we have a few recommendations to browse to see what takes your fancy!

Ben G Recommendations

  1. Bleu Royale Black Carbon & Beveled Edge Wedding Band
  2. Bleu Royale Frosted Grey Tantalum Rose Gold Wedding Band
  3. CrownRing Torque Black Cobalt Wedding Band
  4. CrownRing 8MM Black Titanium Grooved Trim Band
  5. CrownRing 8MM Wide Brushed Center Wedding Band
  6. Simon G. Two-Tone Gray Gold Satin Finish Milgrain Wedding Band
  7. Simon G. Round Cut Graduating Diamond Cradle Wedding Band
  8. Noam Carver Round Cut Criss-Cross Diamond Wedding Band
  9. Kirk Kara "Stella" Diamond Wedding Band with Wheat Engravings and Milgrain Edging

Choosing “The One”

Truth is, you’ve already made the hardest decision of your life - choosing the person to spend forever with.

And that seemed easy, right?

Well, choosing flawless wedding rings for you and the love of your life isn’t much different.

Go with your gut, what you’re drawn to and what makes you beam with glee every time you look at it. 

And failing that, come visit us at the Ben Garelick showroom or speak with our wedding experts online - we’re pros at wedding ring matchmaking, so we can take some of the pressure off!

Visit us at our Buffalo, NY store today. Not nearby? Not to worry - chat with our wedding experts online 24/7, call us on (716) 631-1584, or text (716) 574-0966. Here’s to finding the perfect wedding rings for you and your beau! 

Peter Manka Jr

Peter Manka Jr. - Owner at Ben Garelick

Peter Manka Jr. is a passionate member of the family business who joined Ben Garelick in the early 2000s after working in product licensing for Sesame Workshop & The Jim Henson Company for many years. He obtained a degree in diamonds and jewelry from the prestigious Gemological Institute of America (GIA) in order to sharpen his jewelry skills. He takes great pride in providing exceptional customer service and helping clients find the perfect piece of jewelry.

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