Getting engaged is the first exciting step to a lifelong journey. Most women are thrilled by a marriage proposal and can't wait to show friends and families their dazzling engagement ring. However, this is only the beginning. The wedding band is the treasure which joins two hearts together.
The origin of the wedding band goes back to ancient Egypt. It is believed that Egyptians used the ring to represent eternity and honor marriage. Early rings were made of iron, but gold became the fashion trend during the medieval period. Gemstones were seen as symbols of strength or love, and the Greeks believed diamonds fell from stars.
The act of exchanging wedding bands was introduced in the 1300s with the Greek Orthodox Church but didn't become part of American tradition until World War II. During the war, soldiers and their wives exchanged rings to remind them of their everlasting love, despite uncertainty and the physical distance between them.
Wedding rings are still important parts of tradition today, and there are dozens of styles to choose from. If you are ready to choose your wedding ring, you probably have a few questions. For example, how do you know what style to pick without overpowering your engagement ring?
Typically, wedding bands are similar for the bride and groom, and brides traditionally wear the wedding band on the ring finger of the left hand under the engagement ring. However, some brides desire a wedding ring that has a large stone and can't fit it beneath their engagement ring. There are no set rules on what's right, and it's most important you feel comfortable and happy with your style.
In this post, we'll help you choose the best wedding ring for your personality and relationship because the prettiest wedding band is the one that reflects who you are. Whether you're looking for a wedding band for a halo ring or a unique wedding band that defies convention, we have tips to make ring-shopping smooth and enjoyable. We'll also help you select an anniversary band for celebrating lasting love.
Tips for Choosing a Wedding Band
Shopping for a wedding band is a thrilling experience for you and your partner, but with so much to consider, it can also feel a bit overwhelming. Let the following tips guide you and your other half to the wedding rings of your dreams.
1. Consider Your Style
Both you and your soon-to-be will want to have an idea of what style you're both looking for before you hit the shops. Prepare for your shopping journey by asking yourself the following questions:
- Metal: What type of metal do you want for your wedding ring? Do you want yellow, white or rose gold? Or is a platinum ring something you've always dreamed of?
- Gemstone: Do you want a wedding band embedded with diamonds like a channel setting, or do you want a plain band to complement your engagement ring? If you want a large gemstone, consider the type of gem you wish to have, whether it be a diamond, ruby, sapphire or another gemstone to represent your marriage and love.
- Style: Consider the style of your engagement ring to help you choose your wedding band. Is your engagement ring a traditional solitaire style? You might want to stick with a traditional wedding ring for a unified look. Do you want something more over-the-top? You might consider a larger gemstone to wear on your other hand.
- Size: Traditionally, the wedding band is worn beneath the engagement ring. Keep size and shape in mind if you want both rings to fit neatly together. However, try not to stress size too much. Unlike the engagement ring, you get to choose your wedding band and find your perfect size. You can also always resize your wedding ring later if needed.
2. Consider Your Engagement Ring
Even if you know what type of style you prefer, whether that be a romantic vintage look or bold and modern, it can still feel tricky to choose a wedding band that complements your engagement ring. For the most stunning results, aim to create a complementary style between both rings rather than match them exactly. Here are a few style combination ideas:
- Popular solitaire with pave diamond band: If your engagement ring involves a classic solitaire setting with a plain band, you might consider pairing it with a diamond-studded pave band. A diamond wedding band with a pave setting complements a solitaire engagement ring by adding a thin layer of sparkle beneath a large center stone.
- Eternity engagement ring with a plain wedding band: If your engagement ring offers a lot of shine, such as an eternity ring with diamonds all around the band or a halo setting with a dazzling center stone, you might opt for a simple, diamond-free wedding band. This way the rings do not compete for attention, and your engagement ring can remain the shining star.
- Three-stone engagement ring with a similar band: If you have a three-stone engagement ring, you can complement the overall look by choosing a wedding band that features stones in similar cuts. For example, if your engagement ring features three emerald-cut diamonds, a wedding band embedded with emerald-cut diamonds would add to the overall brilliance and beauty.
- Colored gemstone engagement ring with a colored band: If your engagement ring has a colored center gemstone, choose a wedding band that features the same colored gems alternating with white gemstones. This way the wedding band works with the engagement ring rather than competes with it.
Here are a few extra tips to keep in mind when considering how your rings will look together:
- Match the metals: Because different metals wear differently over the years, it's recommended to choose a wedding band in the same metal as the engagement ring.
- Let the engagement ring be the focal point: Avoid choosing a wedding band that will overwhelm or compete with your engagement ring if you plan to wear both rings on the same finger.
- Make sure they have something in common: Make sure both the engagement ring and the wedding ring share a common element, whether it be the same diamond cut or gemstone color.
When it comes to style, there are no rules. It's most important you and your partner both choose rings you love and which feel great on your fingers.
3. Start Early
If you have an idea of the style you want, start shopping at least two months ahead of time. This will give you time to research, browse and compare prices. If you plan to have a custom design or engraving, consider the time that could add to your plans. With more time to shop, you'll feel less pressured to make a decision.
4. Dare to Be Different
If you and your partner have different tastes, do not worry about matching wedding rings. Men might enjoy more masculine styles like a black and red Qalo ring or a classy titanium Lashbrook band with a wood inlay. A woman might prefer a dazzling gemstone-covered wedding band that complements her engagement ring. It's up to you what you want, but there's no pressure to match. However, you might consider sharing similar details or metals if matching is important to you.
5. Establish a Budget
One of the first steps you'll take in choosing a wedding ring is determining your budget and how much you both feel comfortable spending. Wedding band prices vary greatly depending on many factors, such as metal and diamond quality. For example, a platinum wedding band costs more than a gold band, and a wedding band with diamonds costs more than a plain band. Wedding rings can cost as little as $20, or they can rise into the hundreds or even thousands. When establishing your budget consider:
- Your current income
- Your current monthly expenses
- Projected costs for your wedding
- Your current savings
Figure out what you can afford and let that guide you when it's time to shop.
6. Consider Your Lifestyle
Make sure to consider your lifestyle when choosing your wedding ring. You'll be wearing your wedding band every day, so you want something that feels comfortable and makes sense in your life. If you need to constantly remove or clean your wedding band, you will run the risk of losing it. Choose a wedding band that fits your lifestyle and who you are.
For example, if you have an active lifestyle or frequently work with your hands, you'll want a snag-free wedding band that can stand up to the action. If you're a nurse or a mechanic, you might want to avoid a band with lots of diamonds, and instead, you'll want something durable that can tolerate frequent hand washing. Qalo rings are an example of perfect wedding bands for active couples. They are made of medical-grade silicone, available in different colors from pink to black, and they are highly affordable.
However, if you have a desk job or want a wedding ring for special occasions, it's safe to be as glamorous as you wish.
You'll also want to consider maintenance and what you'll be up for long-term. A wedding ring without gemstones is simple to clean, while a more elaborate ring will require a little more attention. To clean a gemstone-free band, all you'll need to do is wipe it with a soft cloth. To clean a gem-studded wedding ring, you'll need to wash and soak it in warm soapy water and gently brush it with a soft toothbrush. Then you'll rinse the ring and pat it dry with a soft cloth. Some wedding rings are more delicate than others, and you need to consider which type of ring can withstand your lifestyle best.
Anniversary Band Ideas
If you're reading this post, you likely haven't made it to the altar yet. However, considering you're on your way to marital bliss, we figured we'd mention the third type of wedding ring — the anniversary band. Anniversary bands reflect who you are as your style and relationship changes and grows. They are the same as wedding bands but are given on your anniversary to celebrate your enduring love and the milestones you've accomplished with your spouse. There is no right or wrong finger for wearing an anniversary band. However, many women stack their anniversary band with their engagement and wedding ring. If you wish, you could replace the wedding band with the anniversary band for a fresh look and to represent your current style.
When it comes to anniversary band trends, stackable bands take the lead. Stackable bands look gorgeous if you combine bands of different styles and shapes but unite them by using the same metal. Other trends include:
- Mixed golds
- Thick bands
- Rings with multiple bands
Keep these tips in mind when it's time to share your special anniversary jewelry:
- Anniversary rings look elegant when you mix gold colors but make sure rings are styled to comfortably fit together.
- You could choose to wear the ring on a different finger or your other hand, expanding the possibilities.
Traditionally, couples exchange different gifts for each anniversary to symbolize new stages of their relationship. For example, first-year couples might exchange paper gifts, such as stationery or a meaningful book to represent the fragile beginning of their marriage. Anniversary rings can be used to represent traditional anniversary gifts. Choose a metal or gemstone color to represent your anniversary year in the following ways:
- First year: Celebrate a beautiful start to a lifelong journey with an elegant band of gold.
- Fifth year: Choose an anniversary ring that incorporates blue, pink or turquoise. Use sapphire to represent the durability of your marriage.
- 10th year: Silver or blue are traditional colors used to celebrate 10-year anniversaries. Diamonds are the classic gemstone-of-choice for this special milestone.
- 15th year: Choose rubies for your 15th anniversary to symbolize the burning passion you both still feel for each other.
- 25th year: Silver represents a brilliantly shining marriage and the clarity that lies ahead.
The current trend in wedding, anniversary and engagement rings is to support the idea "anything goes." In other words, today's brides want a touch of surprise in their wedding jewelry. So, it's okay to be adventurous and have fun with unusual shapes, settings and colorful gemstones. Brides still love the classics too and are adding new twists to old traditions. If you've always dreamt of toting a unique wedding band, now's your time to shine.
Visit Mountz Jewelers for Assistance
With so many options available, sometimes it's best to ask the experts for guidance. After all, you're getting married, and your wedding ring is something you'll cherish for many years. You want to choose a wedding ring that makes you light up inside, just like the moment you and your other half shared a kiss.
Visit us at Mountz Jewelers today, and we'll be delighted to assist you. We are passionate about jewelry and exceptional customer service. With decades of experience, we can help you select a wedding ring that fits your personality, budget and lifestyle. We'll also help you choose a wedding band which beautifully complements your engagement ring for a look you will enjoy every day. If you don't see your dream ring in our store, we also offer custom design services so you can create a wedding ring to match your fantasies. To shop for a breathtaking wedding ring, stop by one of our locations or make an appointment today!