With weddings being cancelled or indefinitely put on hold all over the world, we’re seeing couples get more and more creative in how and when they tie the knot. Zoom weddings, local ‘elopements,’ dogs as the only guests-- you name it, it’s probably happened in 2020.
Another traditional element of wedding prep that’s bitten the dust? Trying on dresses, suits, or rings in shops. Luckily you can still get great rings online, and we can answer all your questions on men’s wedding rings here and now.
Do men wear wedding rings?
It wasn’t really common for men to wear wedding bands until the mid-20th century, with many historians saying that WW2 was the turning point. Men wanted comforting reminders of their wives at home, so they started to wear rings when they went overseas.
Slowly it became more and more common, and nowadays around 90% of married Aussie blokes are exchanging wedding rings on the big day to show their commitment and love to their partner.
Of course, some men simply choose not to, often because of their occupation. They worry that a ring will be uncomfortable or in the way at work.
[see our most comfortable rings for guys who work with their hands]
How do men wear their rings?
Traditionally the wedding band goes on the ring finger of the left hand (in Australia, the US, and the UK—in some European traditions, it goes on the right). Some men also choose to wear their ring as an engagement band on the right hand, before switching over to the left hand at the wedding.
But honestly, we are all about functionality over tradition here at ETRNL, and here’s the bottom line: it’s your finger, your ring, and your choice how and where you want to wear it.
If you’re left-handed and work with your hands a lot at work, there’s absolutely no reason why you couldn’t wear your wedding ring on the right hand. If you would rather put the band on your index finger, go for it. It should suit your lifestyle, since you’ll hopefully be wearing it for a long time!
So what kind should you choose?
What are men’s wedding rings made of?
Over the years pretty much every option has been explored: rings made out of bone, jewels, textiles, all kinds of metal, wood, some combinations of the above, and now silicone.
Most guys are looking for the same thing though: a ring with low maintenance and high durability, something that will be comfortable, look great, and last for ages without thinking about it.
So it really comes down to your needs and your lifestyle. Check out the guide below.
Wooden rings for men
If you want something a bit warmer and unique, a wood ring could be a great option. Wood rings are not as durable as a hard metal ring, so we combined the soft, warm element of wood with our hard-wearing tungsten for the best of both worlds.
The more tungsten in the design, the stronger the ring. These bands also make a great fifth anniversary gift, for the other hand, since the traditional fifth anniversary gift is wood.
These bands need occasional polishing and are better kept out of water and away from chemicals. We use hard woods rosewood and koa wood to create a glossy lustre ring that shows off the unique woodgrain.
Silicone rings for men
These are safe, flexible, rubber-like rings that are heat-resistant, non-conductive, and will break if they get pulled. This makes them ideal for tradies, guys who work with their hands a lot, or those who have very active hobbies. Silicon is also hypoallergenic, so if sensitive skin is an issue, this could be a great option.
They need no special care and can be worn 24/7—most guys do.
Silicone rings come in a range of colours and styles too.
We love silicone rings so much we wrote a whole separate blog on it.
Tungsten rings for men
Tungsten rings are beautiful, affordable, more traditional-looking, and seriously strong. It is scratch-resistant and hypo-allergenic metal, so they’re really durable and will last for ages.
Tungsten rings are great for people with hands-on jobs, who still want a more traditional-looking ring. Not the best bet to wear if you’re doing tough physical activity, like rock climbing, but it won’t tarnish and no need to polish these.
For more info on tungsten rings, check out this article.
Titanium rings for men
If you’re worried about the weight of your wedding band, but also want it to look more traditional, ultra-light titanium is a great option.
Titanium’s strength and low-density make it the top choice for aircraft and spacecraft, and it works just as well in a comfortable, lightweight ring.
Titanium rings require slightly more care to prevent scratching (particularly the plated options) but these are great for guys who aren’t used to wearing a heavier band and want their ring to last a lifetime.
Signet rings for men
Signet rings are rings that identifies an individual as part of a family or club and were traditionally worn as a mark of nobility. Nowadays, a modern spin has been put on these rings, with many opting for these as a symbol of love and dedication.