After all of the excitement and concentration, the moment has arrived. Your partner has decided to pop the big question. For some people, all of that surprise and happiness might make them forget to glance down at their hand right away! Yet, even weeks or months after the big question, staring down at your ring makes your heart race.
With all of the attention catered to engagements, wedding band shopping can seem more subdued. However, we believe that this piece of jewelry is just as important a statement.
In fact, it may even be more special. It is a symbol of commitment that you are surrounded by the people you love most. Walking down the altar and completing your vows is an extra accomplishment that should be celebrated in the most special of ways: a stunning ring.
There may be a lot of questions floating around in your head. What is the difference between these two rings, other than the occasions they correspond with? How much should a future wife be involved in the decision? What are the best materials and ring styles to look for?
Here at Mark Henry Jewelry, we are ready to help. These are some of our answers to your most pressing and common queries about ring sets, carats, and more.
Women’s Wedding Rings: Defined
It is not uncommon to have some questions about what makes an engagement ring and a wedding band so different. They are actually pretty similar. Both are often made from fine metals, and they feature precious gemstones like diamonds. Sometimes wedding bands are slightly less flashy and a bit more subtle, but it is totally up to the wearer to determine this.
Also, wedding bands are for both partners to wear. Engagement rings are typically given from one person to another during that famous proposal. However, it has become a modern tradition for an engaged couple to both sport these signs of love.
There is one more category for women’s best-seller rings: The anniversary ring. An anniversary band or ring is usually given on key anniversaries. For example, the 66th anniversary is often associated with diamonds, making the diamond anniversary band a trending gift.
Engagement rings used to be a bit of a mystery to their future owner. Traditionally, the one doing the proposing would ask their partner what they might want in a ring. Then, they would then take that information to a jeweler to be pointed in the right direction.
Nowadays, 62% of partners shop for their engagement rings with each other in tow. This can be helpful if you have very specific tastes and want to make sure that you give the most accurate instructions.
This may diminish a little bit of the mystery surrounding a proposal, so it isn’t the route for everyone. In the same breath, we advise you not to leave your partner hanging. Send them, or a trusted friend or relative, some things that you love. Pinterest boards and saved Instagram posts are always a great way to go, too.
Common engagement ring shapes include marquise, solitaire, pear, and oval.
If your proposal is a complete surprise, you may not have time to prepare your partner for the decision. If your relationship is headed towards marriage, and you’re both enthusiastic about the level of commitment, go out on a limb and drop some hints. It can never hurt.
Most brides are a bit more involved in picking their wedding bands. Whether your engagement ring was a total surprise or not, you may want your wedding band to properly reflect the bling you’re already sporting. We do love a good surprise, but we advise the person shopping for a wedding ring (even if it isn’t you) to consider the following criteria.
What To Know About Rings Sizes
While you may already have a ring size on file from your engagement, check again. You can ask a professional to complete this process, or you can refer to your jewelry cabinet for the perfect comfort fit.
Such expensive pieces should never be too large because they can easily slip off of your finger and fall. Losing a wedding band can be a sad experience for a number of reasons, both financial and sentimental. This is often why bridal sets should be insured. Additionally, shadow bands help to physically connect both rings together for less worrying about loss.
Jewelry That Sends a Message
This can be left as an awe-worthy moment at the altar, or you can discuss it before. Either way, wedding bands can be personalized with quotes or secret messages on the inside of the band.
This can be a beautiful way to have a special moment between the two of you on your wedding day that only you are privy to. Perhaps words of love you always exchange, or a funny catchphrase you use?
To Match or Not to Match?
That is the question. It can be endearing when both partners have the same style of wedding band, and it is fairly easy to do. Simply ask your jeweler if they have complementary or identical sets of rings. You can also choose metals, designs, and embellishments that go well together but are not exactly the same; the two-tone combination is more popular than ever.
Commonly matched metals include:
- Rose gold
- White gold
- Stainless steel
- Sterling Silver
Keep in mind that these have different properties. For example, 14k white gold will be stronger than 14k yellow gold, which is stronger than 14k rose gold.
Another question is whether or not your engagement ring should match your wedding band. It often makes for a more cohesive look when this is possible. Since these are the two statement pieces you will be wearing every day, keeping a wedding band simple and elegant can balance a more showy engagement ring.
How Much Is Too Much?
While the price of your ring doesn’t matter for sentimental value, this is a piece of jewelry that will ideally be passed down in your family for generations. Consider this before you go for the most accessible band on the market.
Begin to save for a wedding band as soon as you propose. Make it a part of your wedding checklist and set aside a budget for it. Discuss this together, as you will be purchasing two bands in the same time period. While it can be fun to experiment with trendy designs, sticking to classic taste is also smart; it never goes out of style and might be more worth the money.
Finding the perfect wedding band can be time-consuming. Planning ahead keeps the process fun.
Types of Wedding Bands
You have plenty of options, and design factors, when it comes to wedding bands. Consider first whether or not you want a stone in your ring.
Some people opt for wedding bands made of a material more resistant to wear and tear, like solid gold or silver. The more embellishments you add, the higher risk of ruin you have.
If you’re not going to remember to take your ring off when doing the dishes, swimming, or doing construction work with your hands, take a look at silicon bands, flexible options for people on the go.
The Eternity Band
Our Thread Diamond Eternity Ring is amazing when paired with your engagement ring, and it represents the everlasting devotion of your lover. This 18k yellow gold piece is well-suited to adding to another slim band. Plus, this is a great stackable option and is wonderful at complimenting a large engagement stone.
The Tread Diamond Eternity Ring can also be used as an engagement ring for those who appreciate minimalist style.
Stand Out with Your Band Ring
Who says wedding bands have to be boring? To complement a clear diamond engagement ring, look into colorful wedding band gemstone options. Exotic gemstones are incredible for this purpose, as they are always a conversation starter and a showstopper.
Our Paraíba tourmalines are a brilliant blue and can only be found in three mines worldwide. Our Alexandrite selections are also just as rare, offering a gemstone that changes from a stunning green to a marvelous red depending on the light it is under.
We source this gem from a family-run mine in Brazil and oversee an ethical process every step of the way. This is the birthstone for June, lending extra meaning to those born in that summer month.
Women’s Wedding Bands: Unique Gemstones
Diamonds aren’t your thing? No worries. Check out diamond wedding band alternatives, like white sapphire, white topaz, or white zircon. Diamonds are actually not as rare as they are said to be, and some diamond production is cause for ethical concerns.
Incorporating numerous diamond lookalikes in your ring with dazzling alternatives can offer a fresh perspective on a timeless jewelry piece.
The Wedding Wish List
When in doubt, seek the consultation of a jeweler. The jewelry community at Mark Henry Jewelry is always available to help with choosing the perfect piece to work with your lifestyle and design preferences.
Tell us what colors you prefer, your favorite gem type, and what kind of metal you usually wear — we’ll do the rest.
Engagement Ring Etiquette You Need to Know | Brides
8 Questions to Ask Before Buying Your Wedding Rings | The Knot
What's the Best Diamond Alternative? | International Gem Society
Platinum vs. White Gold vs. Yellow Gold vs. Rose Gold | The Diamond Pro