Photo: Her World Brides March 2016. Trinity de Cartier 18K white, yellow and pink gold rings from Cartier.
One of the most traditional wedding ring metals, yellow gold is used for its value and versatility. Pure gold is too soft to be used for jewellery, so it’s usually mixed in with other alloys. The most common forms include 18K and 24K, but you’ll also find 14K, 22K, and 10K.
The more modern version of gold jewellery, white gold comes plated with rhodium, a shiny, white, heavy metal, which gives it a reflected appearance. But it may wear away over time, and you may have to send it to the jewellers for constant maintenance.
The rosy, pink hue, a mix of yellow gold and a copper alloy, is a softer, less harsh alternative as compared to yellow and white golds when put on your ring finger. Depending on its mix, the romantic metal can be worn on either warmer or cooler skin tones.
Considered the most precious of all jewellery metals, platinum is a highly hardy material (this means you won’t have to bring your band to the jewellers to maintain as often) with a sleek white lustre that complements your diamond well. It is also durable, and hypoallergenic – great for those who’ve got active lifestyles or have sensitive skin. The only drawback: it’ll cost extra to purchase (and to resize). But it’s worth it on the whole, considering you won’t have to worry about maintaining it much.
This is a soft metal that’s also prone to scratches and dents. So if you’ve got a job that requires rigorous daily activity, I suggest you opt for something hardier instead. Although, as silver is a more affordable option, you can afford to experiement with several designs if you’re not keen on the regular plain band. Do note though, that silver will tend to burnish or rust easily if not well taken care of.
Titanium & tungsten
Couples are now seeking these alternatives nowadays as they are both friendlier on the pocket, and fairly durable. But you’ll really have to think it through, as you won’t be able to resize your titanium and/or tungsten ring (because your fingers won’t remain the same size forever), cool as they may seem.
One of the rarest metals in the world, palladium makes a quality piece of jewellery that won’t cost as much as gold and platinum (due to their increasing prices). Its properties are similar to platinum as well: It is a lightweight material that won’t corrode or rust easily, is hypoallergenic, and doesn’t require additional plating or protection.