Kiss the traditional flat, gold wedding band good-bye, guys. Today, the world of men's wedding rings is all about options. We're talking about more comfortable, hand-friendly bands. And why not? You're going to be wearing it for the rest of your life, so find one you love. Here are today's best trends:
Personal Wedding Rings Are In
The one-size-fits-all wedding band is an antiquated concept. What you do every day -- whether you work in construction, sit at a desk, or go to the gym every morning -- should guide your wedding ring choice. What does this mean for you? If extreme is your middle name, choose platinum over gold (for durability); avoid matte finishes (which show scratches), decorative details (easy to blunt after repeated knocks), and gemstones (which can chip, fall out, or trap dirt); and go ergonomic.
Pinched Skin Is a Thing of the Past
Designers are using ergonomics to make rings more comfortable to wear. Look for interiors that are curved, not flat. Some wedding rings distinguish between the top and bottom of the ring: The bottom is plain and tapered to absorb the brunt of abuse. Its taper also allows a man to always wear that section on the bottom, so that the top part will stay relatively unscathed.
Diamonds Are a Guy's Best Friend?
Diamond wedding rings for men have gone from unusual to totally acceptable. Stylish guys love the subtle sparkle and sophistication they impart. In fact, after watches, diamond wedding bands are one of the leading categories in men's jewelry today (they also coordinate well with diamond-studded timepieces and her diamond-set wedding band).
The best-selling styles are subtle -- involving less than a full carat of diamonds -- and wearable. The stone is usually set to be flush with the surface of the ring to create a totally smooth exterior and to provide good security for the stone. Two popular men's styles incorporate gypsy- and channel-set round or square diamonds (baguettes are not usually used for men's rings). And we're not just talking icy white diamonds, either -- black, champagne, and yellow diamonds are hot gems for men's rings.
Platinum Is White-Hot
Today's couples appreciate the beauty of platinum and want their wedding rings to be of the finest quality. According to wedding ring jewelers, a subdued matte finish is most popular at the moment. This treatment requires maintenance, as scratches can quickly mar a matte finish.
#1: Tapered platinum wedding rings by Scott Kay Platinum
#2: Gypsy-set stones in matte platinum rings by Catherine Iskiw
#3: 18K-gold ring with channel-set diamonds from Service Merchandise, (888) 764-4387
#4: Gypsy-set, champagne-colored diamonds in a matte platinum ring by NOA