Gold, platinum, and titanium often take the front seat for men’s rings, but not anymore. Instead, the dark and daring black ring has become mainstream popularity for men’s rings. Cool, mysterious, classic yet modern, the black ring complements casual and upscale attire. However, not all black rings are created equal, with several different metals, alloys, and other materials for their construction. Most of the materials used in black rings are similar in appearance but will differ in quality and cost. Let’s look at what you should know before purchasing a black ring.
How to Determine the Best Black Ring Option
Not every black ring has the same materials making their value and quality vastly different. While each material will have its share of pros and cons, everyone’s top option will vary greatly depending on the factors they determine are necessary. However, there are a few characteristics to consider before purchasing, including:
Durability: Every ring has a standard measurement of resistance to scratching or abrasions known as the Mohs hardness scale. This scale is ranked from 1 to 10, with 10 having the highest resistance.
Hypoallergenic Properties: While metal allergies only affect nearly 10% and 15% of people, this is an essential characteristic to consider. Metal allergies commonly appear out of the blue, and the body will perceive a specific type of metal as a toxin causing the skin to react with pain where the jewelry sits. While some black metal rings are hypoallergenic, not all metals, alloys, or materials are.
Availability: Some black rings are relatively common, while others are not, making purchasing a specific type of black ring easier than others.
Cost: The cost of black rings will vary from store to store. While cost is often subjective, we have labeled each option to provide a general idea and price comparison.
Tarnish: Will the ring lose its black luster over time?
Popular Black Ring Options
We have constructed the ultimate list of black ring options offered on the market today with each of their pros, cons, Mohs hardness, hypoallergenic property, availability, and cost.
Of course, black titanium jewelry is stunning with the same unparalleled features as titanium. In addition, many jewelers often commend black titanium for being lightweight, durable, and affordable. However, if you have purchased a black titanium ring, you may already know their most significant issue. They do not remain black forever.
Black titanium is created by applying extreme heat to specific grade titanium to produce a black coating. Similar to other metal ring coatings, the plating is less durable than the solid titanium and has the likelihood of chipping. In addition, the technique used to color the titanium will, over time, scratch, scuff, and scrape off, revealing the natural gray surface of the metal.
Suppose you are interested in titanium’s strength, affordability, and hypoallergenic qualities. In that case, we suggest purchasing a titanium ring with a black rubber inlay. The unique twist of the black rubber inlay gives a ring an unconventional rougher, edgier feel without the worry of fading or chipping.
In most cases, stainless steel is anodized to change the surface color of the metal to appear black. Anodizing alters the surface of the metal through an electrochemical process without changing the composition of the ring. In some cases, black stainless steel rings remain extremely affordable and hypoallergenic.
However, the good old saying, “you get what you pay for,” rings true. Black stainless steel rings will lose their black shine and polish faster than most. In addition, stainless steel rings themselves have a lot of downsides you need to consider. The metal does not react well with chlorine. Therefore you will need to remove your ring before entering a chlorine pool. Lastly, due to the durability of stainless steel, they are impossible to resize.
Tungsten is known for its incredible strength, durability, and affordability. However, black tungsten only possesses a fraction of its original counterpart. Tiny particles of titanium zirconium alloy are embedded into the surface of the tungsten ring using an extremely high velocity. The titanium zirconium alloy gives the black appearance to the once regular tungsten ring.
While regular tungsten rings are highly durable, the black tungsten ring is slightly more prone to scratches or fading due to the titanium surface. Additionally, the cost is substantially higher due to black tungsten being very limited for both purchase and design.
If you are interested in tungsten’s toughness and affordability, we suggest purchasing a tungsten ring with a black ceramic inlay. The ceramic inlay provides a more contemporary look while allowing the ring to remain highly durable, ranked a nine on the Mohs scale, and remove the risk of scratching or chips.
Black gold rings are made in several different ways. However, the most common is by electroplating a white gold ring with black rhodium for a black color. Unlike other black metal rings, black gold is precious since its foundation is pure gold. In addition, gold is a softer metal that can easily be scratched or bent if struck with force. Similarly, as with most black coatings or surface treatments, the black will wear off and chip with time. However, unlike the other black rings, black gold rings do not need to be replaced but will be required to be re-plated often to maintain their luster. Lastly, it’s essential to remember that these rings are more limited in design and expensive both in the initial price and for upkeep.
Black diamond rings are more enduring than titanium, stronger than tungsten, and maintain the timeless luster of diamonds. The signature black color is created by fuzing diamond crystals under extreme heat and pressure, allowing no light to pass through. Additionally, these rings are highly durable, with a hardness of 10 on the Mohs hardness scale, only being able to be cut using a laser, electricity, or another diamond. However, the black diamond ring’s price tag reflects the luxurious solid diamond material. These rings average between $1,500-$8,000, depending on the other materials and the level of detail.
Black zirconium ceramic rings have become a popular alternative for black metal rings. Their tough, lightweight material is highly durable and resistant to abrasion —perfect for rings that are meant to last a lifetime. In addition, they have a metallic appearance and a solid black color closely resembling a black diamond ring. However, black zirconium ceramic rings have a few special physical features those other black rings lack.
Black zirconium ceramic rings are manufactured by mixing especially formulated high-tech ceramic powder with a color agent. This mixture is then baked in extreme heat and pressure to create a solid black ring through and through. A zirconia-based ceramic ring is the highest strength among ceramics available today, ranking a nine on the Mohs scale of hardness. Only diamond and corundum abrasives can scratch.
All of the black rings you will find in the Avant-Garde Jewelry Collection are handcrafted with black zirconium ceramic and have a lifetime warranty and sizing guarantee. You don’t have to spend a fortune on a black ring for it to last a lasting lifetime luster.
Are Black Rings a Good Choice?
Still interested in one of the dark and daring allure of the famous black ring? You don’t have to settle or pay an arm or a leg for a unique, one-of-a-kind black ring. At Avant-Garde, we specialize in titanium and tungsten jewelry. However, we do not work with any black titanium or tungsten. This is because we want to ensure your ring will last you or your loved one for a lifetime. For various reasons, black titanium and black tungsten require a coating to be applied, causing the risk of fading and chipping. However, we offer beautiful black zirconium rings, titanium ring with a black rubber inlay, and tungsten ring with a black ceramic inlay. Please browse our vast ring collection to find the perfect ring, or contact us directly for assistance.