While gold, platinum, silver and palladium remain popular choices in men's wedding bands, a trend in alternative metals has emerged, along with new and different styles. These new metals like titanium, cobalt, and tungsten, are crafted to satisfy both conservative tastes defined by elegant simplicity as well as the more eclectic penchants characterized by inlays of camo, polished wood or even real meteorite.
These new metals and styles are not to be written off as fads, as they have proven to have a level appeal with consumers as their traditional counterparts for over a decade. And if price is a consideration (as it always is), in almost all cases, they are less costly than gold, platinum and palladium. Lets explore the most popular of these hot trending metals.
Tungsten is a free element whose name is derived from tung sten in Swedish which means "heavy stone." This metal is not only heavy but highly durable, with a hardness of around 10 times that of gold. Because of it's hardness, it is more scratch resistant than gold or platinum, enabling it forever to retain its finish. It comes in multiple color options - white, black and gray, and it is hypoallergenic. And for all of these fine qualities, tungsten sells at a lower price than gold and platinum.
Tungsten wedding bands are crafted in multiple designs ranging from a plain high-gloss silver, a two-tone silver and black, a satin finished design to a myriad of intricate inlays of camo, precious metals, polished wood and fine gems plus much more.
Below is a tungsten ridged band with a bark finish - an elegantly masculine design.
The image below shows how the two colors of the same metal can coalesce in a design with a white tungsten band inlay with a textured black tungsten center.
And for real value seekers, here is an example of an elegant black tungsten band with a bright polished comfort fit for under $150.
Titanium is an element discovered in the late 1700's and was named after the Titans of Greek mythology. Similar to tungsten, titanium is a strong, silvery metal that is abundant in the earth. However, it is not as hard as tungsten - titanium registers 6 on the Mohs scale of 1 - 10, while tungsten is a 9. And it is much lighter in weight than tungsten. So if you prefer a weightlessness feel in the band, this may be the more preferable metal of the two. Like tungsten, titanium comes in gray/silver and black colors, and it too is hypoallergenic. Also like tungsten, prices for titanium are generally well below precious metals and vary, depending upon the usual price determinants like craftsmanship, brand, etc.
Below is an example of an elegant titanium band with satin finish and beveled edge with diamonds embedded in it.
And for your outdoors man, here's a well crafted titanium band with a camo inlay. This piece and others like it can be had for under $300.
Cobalt, like tungsten and titanium, is a natural element found in the earth. It is slightly harder than titanium but not as hard as tungsten. Cobalt is less scratch resistant than tungsten but more scratch resistant than gold or silver. It is also much more malleable than, lets say, tungsten, and therefore much easier for a jeweler to work with. One unique characteristic of cobalt over both tungsten and titanium is its color; in jewelry it renders a "whiteness" comparable to white gold or platinum, which is aesthetically appealing to many. And it's price tag is in the same ball park as tungsten and titanium.
Below is an elegant cobalt step-edge comfort fit band with a contrasting finish that is priced under $175.
Marrying a baseball enthusiast? Below we have a creative contemporary cobalt band design with an center inlay in the pattern of baseball threads.
And if you want something unworldly, below is a handsome cobalt ring with a center band of real meteorite - substance of an actual meteor fallen to the earth.
As you can see, these trendy men's wedding bands lend themselves to lots of creativity. They are far from what Dad and Grandpa have worn over the years. And these increasingly popular rings, crafted in these highly durable metals in a multitude of designs, offer both aesthetic appeal and value over the traditional precious metal classics. If you have any inclination towards seeing more of these specimens, we have a huge collection for you to browse through here.