For people who are considering an alternative to traditional gold or silver rings, tungsten has become a popular choice for several reasons.
Tungsten carbide is tough, durable, and quite attractive while being most affordable. As with any metal for jewelry, there are both pros and cons to selecting tungsten carbide as a ring.
1. The first positive attribute is the affordable price when compared to white gold and other precious metals for rings. It is the affordability that has helped make it an attractive alternative, but that is not the only reason for its success.
2. Scratch Resistance: Tungsten carbide is arguably the most scratch-resistant metal on earth. This is because of the overall hardness of the metal which means that most other materials will not cause it to scratch. In fact, the only way to engrave the ring is with a laser or diamond-tipped drill.
3. Does Not Bend: This may be considered both a positive and negative aspect of the ring material. Because it cannot bend, it cannot be fitted like gold or silver rings, but instead must be exchanged for one that is the right size. However, it also means that it cannot be accidentally bended by other forces. Most accidents will not bend the ring which means that you can slip it on and off with ease.
4. Hypo-Allergenic: Unlike gold and certain other metals, tungsten carbide and the small amount of nickel that is usually mixed in with the metal is not prone to causing an allergic reaction. Those who have allergies to gold can wear tungsten with no difficulty and there have been very few cases where the material has caused a skin reaction.
5. Variety: While most tungsten carbide rings come in gun-metal grey, they can be plated for other colors such as white, black, and even gold. This means that you can you choose the color that is best suited for your needs. However, keep in mind that those with gold allergies will be exposed because of the gold-plating.
1. There are a few cons to owning a tungsten carbide ring, but not many. The material itself is quite strong, durable, and under most conditions will last for a very long time. However, this means that the ring itself cannot be resized. You will have to get a new ring instead which can be a drawback if you need resizing.
2. May Shatter: An impact of extreme force may shatter the ring instead of bending it which means that it will have to be replaced if that occurs. This is why most jewelers provide a lifetime warranty for the rings because they will be replaced if something does shatter them.
3. Price: Compared to cheaper metals like Alloy Zinc, Stainless Steel, and Titanium, Tungsten Carbide is more expensive.
4. Resale Value: Because tungsten carbide cannot be reshaped like gold, its resale value is quite small by comparison. Unless it fits the finger of someone else, the metal itself is not very useful since it is easier to creating jewelry and other items from new tungsten carbide rather than recycling older rings.
5. Overall, the positive attributes of tungsten rings outweigh the negative ones to a significant degree. If you are looking for a solid, beautiful material with real weight for your next ring, tungsten carbide is a great choice.
Related: How Long do Tungsten Rings Last?