Are all Tungsten Rings the same quality?
You may have been shopping online recently for a new ring and have seen some amazing Tungsten Rings available. But why are some so cheap? Tungsten is tungsten…. right?
The name tungsten derives from the Swedish words ‘tung sten‘ meaning ‘heavy stone’. Pure tungsten has the highest melting point of all metals (3422 °C), as well as the highest tensile strength of pure metals. In its pure form, it is vulnerable to scratching just like other metals, but when combined with carbon as the chemical compound to form its proper name, tungsten carbide, it gains extraordinary hardness. It is this hardness that makes tungsten carbide ideal for use as a jewellery material. Tungsten carbide can be finished to a high mirror-like polish, stone texture, or a subtle satin finish.
Tungsten is actually one of the hardest materials used in jewellery manufacturing. Chosen for its robust, anti-scratch and everlasting shine qualities. So you may be thinking, why have you seen some tungsten rings for sale for under $50? But some that look very similar sell for over $300? In almost all cases, the cheaper rings are cheap for a reason and the more expensive rings are usually better quality. It’s important you choose carefully to avoid being “ripped off”.
Cheaper tungsten rings (<$100) will usually have a higher quantity of nickel or cobalt (the binding element required for tungsten to hold its shape). This results in a poorer quality ring that may show signs of wear after a short amount of time, lose its shine and may even be unusually brittle. For only a modest amount of increased investment, you would be better off choosing higher quality, ‘jewellery grade’ Tungsten Carbide Ring. These tungsten rings have a lower nickel/cobalt element and are created using a more advanced sintering process and will last for 30 years+ without losing their shine, dulling or breaking.
You may even see some rings advertised as ‘Tungsten’ for sale in some marketplaces for under $10… Be VERY wary of these rings as they often have low-grade stainless steel, high nickel, contain copper and have low tungsten elements. These rings are also usually cheaply plated and will lose their colour quickly. They may even react to skin that is sensitive turning it green or causing irritations. The age-old saying stands, that you get what you pay for!
Not all Tungsten Rings are the same quality.
If you are after an affordable, long-lasting Tungsten Ring that’s going to hold its shine, won’t fade or dull – then be prepared to pay around $150-$300 for a quality Tungsten Ring. Any more and you are probably paying too much, any less and you might find yourself being disappointed in 6 months time.
Choose a reputable ring retailer that offers a warranty, fair exchange policy and has plenty of genuine reviews from happy customers.