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Jewellery Insurance

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How to Choose the Right Ring Metal

Q Report Team
Updated on October 06, 2022
3 min read

Setting style, stone shape, diamond size and more - there are so many decisions involved in finding that perfect engagement ring. One of the most important is choosing the ring metal.

Today, shoppers have a whole range of options at their fingertips. In this post, we look into the pros and cons of common ring metal types and outline how you can go about choosing the right option for you.



Why is Ring Metal Important?

The ring metal is a defining characteristic of your piece. A great ring band complements the diamond, enhances its brilliance and ensures your jewellery looks and feels great on the hand. 

Your choice of ring metal will largely depend on the style of ring you’re aiming to create. Metals like yellow gold can be a fantastic match for more traditional pieces, and metals like platinum can suit more contemporary designs. 

Not all ring metals are created equal in terms of durability, price and style. Let’s look at how some of the most common metal types compare.



Common Ring Metal Types


Yellow Gold

Yellow gold is one of the most common and recognisable metals on the market. Its versatility and timeless appearance have made it a favourite in jewellery for civilisations, and gold remains one of the most popular engagement ring metal choices today. The preferred caratage for diamond rings is 18ct. In Asia and the Middle East, 22-24ct is popular and is only suitable for chains, bangles or rings without stones as it is too soft.



  • Versatile
  • Easy to work with and easy to resize
  • Doesn’t tarnish and is immune to oxidation and rust


A good choice for: Traditional and timeless designs.



White Gold

White gold’s silver-esque appearance is a result of combining copper, nickel or zinc with yellow gold. White gold rings are often plated in a durable material called rhodium, which enhances the scratch-resistance of the ring and contributes to a dazzling shine.



  • A versatile appearance that works well with most designs
  • More affordable than platinum but achieves a similar appearance



  • May need to be re-plated with rhodium every year or two to retain durability
  • Can become yellowed without rhodium plating


A good choice for: A sleek and versatile alternative to platinum.



Rose Gold

Rose gold achieves its distinctive warm colouration through a blend of copper. Sometimes referred to as ‘pink’ or ‘red’ gold, rose gold ring metals have increased in popularity in recent years for its modern yet elegant appearance.



  • Distinctive appearance
  • Maintains shine without rhodium plating


A good choice for: A contemporary yet stylish appearance.




Alongside gold blends, platinum is one of the most popular ring metals for engagement rings today. It’s renowned for its hardness, durability and rarity - making it prized and often expensive.



  • Most durable of all ring metal types
  • Natural white colour and will not fade
  • Hypoallergenic



  • Its density makes it heavier than other ring metals, weighing approximately 30% more than gold
  • Can be prone to scratching
  • Considerably more expensive than other metals


A good choice for: A highly durable, elegant and versatile option.




Finally, silver is another long-time favourite in the jewellery world for its versatility and classic appearance.



  • Readily available
  • More affordable than other metal types
  • Versatile and classic appearance



  • Prone to tarnishing over time
  • Relative softness makes it prone to scratching


A good choice for: A timeless style that won’t break the bank.


Other less-common ring metals include titanium, palladium and tungsten.



How to Make the Right Choice

As you can see, there’s a lot to consider when selecting the right ring metal for your ring. To help your decision, ask yourself these questions: 

  • Will a more expensive ring metal like platinum fit into my overall budget?
  • How will the ring metal complement the style of my diamond?
  • What is the personal style of my partner?

Your answers should give you a good starting point, but we always recommend consulting with a trusted jeweller. They’ll be able to guide you towards a ring metal that is the perfect balance of style, durability and affordability that works within your unique wishes and budget. 

To see how little it can cost to protect your engagement ring with 12 months worldwide cover for theft, damage and loss, get an instant jewellery insurance quote today.

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