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Buying Your Wedding Bands: Everything You Need to Know

By Mike Fried,

Bottom Line Recommendation: 

Design a wedding band that you’ll be excited to wear for a lifetime.

For her, choose a band that compliments her engagement ring. a halo engagement ring pairs well with a pavé wedding band (learn more about what wedding bands go well with halo engagement rings in our guide). For him, opt for a durable band with personal style, like this white gold wedding band from James Allen or this platinum ring with a rose gold inlay

No matter which styles you choose, we highly recommend purchasing your wedding band from a reputable vendor like James Allen or Blue Nile—to ensure the diamonds and jewelry are of high quality.

Review the guide below for more buying tips and wedding band ideas

Diamond Wedding band

    Wedding Bands: The Fundamentals

    Dating back at least 3,000 years to Ancient Egypt, wedding bands signify love and commitment between a married couple. With no defined beginning or end, the wedding band represents eternity. The first rings were crafted out of iron. And by medieval times, rings were made of gold settings decorated with gemstones.

    To help you with the diamond buying process we lean on our expertise and experience. The author of this article, our CEO, Mike Fried has over 20 years of experience in the diamond industry. Mike started from the bottom, sorting and evaluating hundreds of thousands of diamonds to learn every facet (pun intended) of diamond quality and value. Mike followed that up by spending years buying and selling diamonds on the wholesale market as well as selling tens of millions of dollars worth of diamonds to diamond retailers.

    Mike Fried has written hundreds of articles and helped answer more than 30,000 emails from our readers. This has given him a unique perspective on what information truly helps our readers in their quest for finding the perfect diamond engagement ring or piece of jewelry.

    Mike is recognized as an industry expert and has been quoted in publications such as Us, People, Page Six, The Next Web and more.

    To read more about our process for secret shopping and reviewing companies and additional details about how we operate, check out this article.

    Types of Wedding Band Materials

    Today, most wedding bands are made of precious metal: yellow gold, rose gold, white gold or platinum. There are pros and cons to each of the wedding band materials.

    Yellow gold: Yellow gold is the purest color and easiest to maintain of all the gold types. It’s also the most hypoallergenic. Yellow gold needs to be polished and cleaned regularly.

    White gold: White gold is durable and scratch-resistant. It’s more affordable than platinum but needs to be dipped every few years to keep its luster.

    Rose gold: Rose gold is very durable and more affordable than the other wedding band materials. It’s not a hypoallergenic metal.

    Platinum: Platinum is hypoallergenic and more durable than white gold. It’s much more expensive than the other types of wedding bands and gets scratched and dull over time.

    Blue Nile is now running a 50% off Mother’s Day sale on jewelry.

    Styles of wedding bands – male and female

    Classic curved Wedding Ring with Diamonds
    Classic Curved Wedding Ring 

    If you’re wondering, “What kind of wedding band should I get?” There are plenty of options for both men and women.

    Female wedding bands often compliment the engagement ring. They can even be purchased together as a set called a bridal or wedding set. A wedding band can be as intricate and full of diamonds as a pavé eternity band, or as simple as a white gold band.

    Male wedding bands tend to be more simple in style. Men’s wedding band materials are commonly white gold, tungsten, titanium and yellow gold. Wedding bands are traditionally worn on the ring finger, either the left or right hand, depending on the culture. If an engagement ring is also worn, the wedding band is put closest to the heart.

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    Wedding Band Costs

    How much are wedding bands? Wedding bands range from $150 to $25,000 and more depending on the style and type of precious metal. 

    Yellow gold: Female yellow gold wedding bands with pavé diamonds cost approximately $1,000. Male wedding bands made of yellow gold cost anywhere from $225 to several thousands of dollars.

    White gold: White gold wedding bands for women can range from $150 all the way up to $16,500. Men’s rings are usually simple and under $500.

    Rose gold: The cost of rose gold wedding bands spans a range from $250 to $,000. For men’s bands, the costs start around $225 for a classic style and go up to $2,000 or more. 

    Platinum: Wedding bands made of platinum start around $225 and go up to $5,000.

    Who buys the wedding bands?

    Traditionally, the groom buys the wedding band for the bride, and the bride buys the wedding band for the groom. This can be seen as a romantic gesture—a gift of love and commitment exchanged on the wedding day.

    But you can decide however you want to buy your wedding bands. If you share a bank account or have a combined pool of money for the wedding, you might buy the wedding rings together. Ultimately, it’s up to you and your partner how you want to buy them.

    Best Places To Buy Wedding Bands

    Similar to when you buy an engagement ring, you want to purchase your wedding band from a reputable jewelry vendor. From our extensive experience in the industry, the best places to buy wedding bands are from these recommended online vendors.

    James Allen: James Allen offers superior customer service and stunning jewelry craftsmanship. Their website provides high-resolution photography of every ring, so you can confidently buy online. Their beautiful collection of well-crafted settings like this White Gold Prong Eternity Ring make them an excellent choice for fine jewelry.

    Blue Nile: Blue Nile has developed strong relationships with diamond and jewelry vendors—giving them the largest online selection of diamonds and settings. Their prices are competitive and their jewelry craftsmanship is exceptional—making it one of the best places to buy wedding bands online. See this beautiful Cathedral Pavé Diamond Ring as an example.

    Brian Gavin Diamonds: Known for selling some of the best cut diamonds in the world, Brian Gavin diamonds offer unparalleled brilliance. Their collection is full of exceptional jewelry at competitive prices. For example their gorgeous Fishtail Pave Band would be a fantastic choice.

    Boutique options: If you’re looking for something unique and willing to pay extra, please contact us. We have connections with boutiques who can provide this extra level of service to you.

    Wedding Bands for Her

    Full Eternity Ring

    Wedding bands range in setting style from prong to pave to bezel. Even eternity bands are commonly purchased as wedding rings.

    If you’re looking to pair your band with your engagement ring, aim to match the style and metal as close as you can.

    The amount of diamonds and specialty details (or lack thereof) is entirely up to you. Some women prefer the extra sparkle on their wedding band, while others want to keep the attention on their engagement ring.

    A wedding band can also have similar or the same features as your partner’s band. Those are called matching wedding bands.

    Review several styles before making your final decision.

    Some of wedding band designs:

    Wedding Bands for Him

    Wedding bands for men tend to be simpler than those for women, but some include beautiful detailing and intricacies. For example, you can have diamonds embedded into your band or your metal can be polished, brushed, hammered or hand-braided.

    Matte Inlay Wedding Ring in Platinum and 18K Yellow Gold
    Matte Inlay Wedding Ring 

    Choose a style that matches your personality, but also fits your lifestyle. If you use your hands frequently for work or recreation, you’ll want to keep any diamonds flush within the band. You may also want to consider a durable metal that can withstand the demands of your lifestyle. For example, titanium has a significantly higher Mohs score than gold (6, compared to 2.75) and a lower density, making it a lighter and stronger choice of metal suitable for a more rugged ring.

    We prepared a Men’s wedding bands guide for you to get all the information you need to make a smart decision.

    Examples of wedding band designs:

    Determining the Quality of a Wedding Band

    You and your spouse-to-be will be wearing your wedding bands forever. Make sure they’re made of high-quality materials so they last for many years to come. Consider these three important aspects when shopping for a wedding band: the type of precious metal used (see our guide here), the diamonds and the setting quality.

    Most wedding bands for both men and women are made with durable materials, like yellow gold, white gold, platinum or tungsten carbide. Just be sure to choose a reputable vendor who provides some type of verification of the precious metal used, so you know exactly what you’re getting.

    As far as the diamonds in a wedding band, they’ll be much smaller than the center stone of an engagement ring. In short, the diamonds are simply too small for the expense and time involved with grading the diamonds. For instance, if you were to certify 14 diamonds in a wedding band, the certifications would cost nearly a thousand dollars alone.

    Without diamond certifications, it’s especially important to buy wedding bands from thoroughly vetted, reputable vendors like Blue Nile and James Allen. In a wedding band, much of what you’re paying for is craftsmanship and style. The way the band is formed and how the stones are set significantly impact the ring’s beauty and quality. For instance, the level of the jeweler’s expertise and amount of time invested will be significantly greater with vendors like Blue Nile and James Allen—versus other companies.

    Overall, when reviewing diamonds in a wedding band, watch for the level of brilliance (how much the diamonds sparkle and reflect white light). Brilliance is the best indicator of beauty and quality in smaller diamonds.

    If you’d like assistance in reviewing diamonds or wedding bands, contact our experts. Also, check out our guide on how much to spend on a wedding ring to get an idea about the cost.

    Half Round Band 18K White Gold
    Half Round Wedding Band

    How to Determine Sizing for Wedding Bands

    The simplest way to determine the size for a wedding band is to match the size of the wearer’s engagement ring or another existing ring in their jewelry collection. Read our full guide here to find your ideal ring size.

    Finding a Wedding Band

    For a beautiful, timeless wedding band, match the style and personality of your someone special. Choose a reputable vendor like Blue Nile or James Allen for your purchase.

    Email our experts for help in finding a stunning engagement ring or wedding band.

    James Allen James Allen is the leader in online diamond sales. Their imaging technology is the same as inspecting a diamond with a jeweler's loupe. They have the largest exclusive loose diamond inventory online and fantastic prices. They also have the nicest collection of lab created diamonds online.
    What we love about them:
    • No questions asked returns within 30 days of shipment. James Allen will send you a paid shipping label to return the ring.
    • Lifetime Warranty
    • Free International Shipping
    • Free prong tightening, repolishing, rhodium plating and cleaning every 6 months
    • Provide insurance appraisals
    • One free resizing within 60 days of purchase
    • Free ring inscriptions
    • Best-in-class high quality imagery of all diamonds in stock
    • 24/7 Customer Service
    • Best-in-class packaging
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    Blue Nile Blue Nile is the largest and most well known internet jewelry seller. They have a very large exclusive online inventory. Their high quality images are catching up to James Allens' and their prices are amazing.
    What we love about them:
    • No questions asked returns within 30 days of shipment. Blue Nile will send you a paid shipping label to return the ring.
    • Lifetime Warranty
    • Free Shipping
    • Free prong tightening, repolishing, rhodium plating and cleaning every 6 months
    • Provide insurance appraisal
    • One free resizing within the first year of purchase
    • High quality images of about half of their diamonds
    • 24/7 Customer Service
    • 100% credit towards future upgrades (must be at least double in value)
    • Best in class fulfillment
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    About the author

    Mike Fried Mike Fried Mike Fried has over 25 years experience in the diamond industry working with Leo Schachter Diamonds, Moshe Namdar Diamonds, and joining The Diamond Pro in 2007. He is recognized as an industry expert and has been quoted in publications such as Us, People, Page Six, The Next Web and more.

    Please enter your email address to receive your personal one-time use unique coupon code for 25% off engagement rings:

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