Choosing among men’s wedding bands is an important task. The band is indicative of a forever bond and should compliment both lifestyle and personality. Whether you’re looking for classic or unique wedding rings, choosing the right metal is an integral part of the experience.
Why? Well, this is one accessory you’ll wear forever. With that in mind, it’s important to find the perfect match. There are a plethora of wedding ring styles to choose from, each offering their own unique selling points.
Men’s wedding bands are made from gold, sterling silver, platinum, titanium and tungsten, among other materials. However, another variety of wedding rings is rising in the retail sphere: tantalum rings.
If you’re searching for a male engagement ring that’s popular for its luster, durability, and uniqueness, you may want to consider buying a wedding ring in tantalum.
Despite its recent emergence in the wedding ring industry, tantalum is a hard, lustrous metal that’s been used industriously since the 19th century. So, what is tantalum? Is it a reliable metal? Is it expensive? Is it better than titanium?
We’re going to address all of your questions in this complete guide to tantalum rings and bands.
Tantalum in its natural form is a dense mineral highly moldable by heat or electricity, making it an optimal choice for industrial usage. Tantalum has a deep, livid color that’s darker than platinum. Due to its strength and utilitarian appeal, tantalum is a popular metal used in jewelry pieces including tantalum rings and bands, and watches.
Tantalum has been around for centuries, however it has a retro vibe that makes it a unique presence in the jewelry market. For instance, the name tantalum comes from greek mythological figure Tantalus, father of Niobe and ruler of Manisa, also known as “the city of Tantalus.” Pretty cool, right?
Don’t let its ancient origins fool you, though. Tantalum is presently used in energy fields including capacitors and resistors. Ok, enough history, let’s talk about tantalum rings and bands!
The appeal of tantalum wedding bands is that they combine classic elegance with modern, futuristic appeal. Tantalum rings are lightweight, masculine, sturdy and unique. Because they’re made from a durable industrial material, they’re especially resistant to corrosion.
Tantalum wedding rings are a unique variation combining fluidity, aesthetic and industrial hardiness. As with most jewelry metals, there are pros and cons to Tantalum rings and bands.
Tantalum durability: As we’ve hammered out repeatedly, tantalum rings are durable. Unlike tungsten, another popular mens wedding ring, tantalum is shatterproof. Tantalum is a trusted, rugged option tough enough for those that work with their hands.
Appearance: Tantalum has a beautiful luster thanks to the metal’s natural sheen. Depending on your style, tantalum rings are available in either a matte or polished finish.
Tantalum is a hypoallergenic metal, which is especially important for people with sensitive skin or who are prone to allergic reactions.
Resizing: Can tantalum rings be resized? Yep. In the event that your ring size changes, tantalum gives you the option to easily resize the ring rather than replace it. Conversely, both titanium and tungsten are difficult to resize.
Tantalum is easy to clean: Caring for tantalum is simple and does not require special cleaning by a professional jeweler. Simply clean it with detergent-free soapy water to add a sparkling clean shine to tantalum rings and bands.
Despite tantalum wedding rings being a popular choice, there are cons to consider.
For example, tantalum itself is a conflict metal. What does that mean? Well, about ten percent of tantalum is sourced from a conflict mining zone in the Congo, where smuggling and exportation have resulted in massive crisis, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.
There are also environmental concerns surrounding tantalum contamination from dissolved particles into the earth’s freshwater and soil. However, like other metals including titanium and tungsten, the data is blurry and contradictory.
Another con of tantalum rings are the lack of design variety. Unlike the big three metals: gold, silver and platinum, tantalum wedding rings are a relatively new presence among male rings. This means that there are limited designs of tantalum wedding rings and bands for men, and virtually non-existent options for women.
Are these cons enough to dissuade potential buyers from purchasing tantalum wedding rings? It depends on the buyer’s priorities, however there are undeniable pros to tantalum rings that may outweigh the cons.
Tantalum is highly malleable meaning it can take a beating from wear and tear and not break or crack. In fact, tantalum is virtually shatterproof. When tantalum transforms from a natural earth mineral into a jewelry metal, a ceramic glaze gets applied that provides the ring with either a matte or polished metal finish.
This finish creates a scratch-resistant surface to an already durable material. Ultimately, tantalum ring hardness is strong, inert and resistant to scratches and cracks.
Tantalum rings are slightly more expensive than titanium or tungsten rings, and for good reason. Tantalum is a much more rare metal consisting of only 1-2 PPM (parts-per million) of the Earth’s crust.
Bottom line: tantalum is a scarce material and is valued accordingly. Additionally, tantalum rings are created with high-quality craftsmanship, adding to the price tag and novelty of tantalum wedding rings.
There you have it, that’s the full breakdown of tantalum rings, we hope we answered all your questions in this guide. Yet, one question remains: “Should I buy a tantalum ring?”
Ultimately, choosing mens wedding bands is a highly personal and subjective process. Only you can decide which ring is right for you. With this information, we hope we made the task a little easier.
To recap: Because tantalum is a rare metal, a tantalum wedding ring stands out among others. Tantalum rings are built to last, meaning you’ll never have to worry about the delicacy or fragility of your wedding ring. A wedding ring in tantalum is timeless, durable and unique.
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