Are you allergic to your wedding ring? We don't mean allergic to marriage—that's a separate issue. Allergies affect a lot more ring wearers than you might think. Hypoallergenic wedding rings are one possible solution to this irritating issue.
Why am I Suddenly Allergic to my Wedding Ring?
You’re finally married to your favorite person in the world, but you have one small problem: your wedding ring doesn’t seem to be a fan of your union.
This might be the first time you’ve worn a piece of jewelry and made the unfortunate acquaintance of ring rash.
Ring rash usually appears as red, itchy, scaly, or otherwise irritated skin on your ring finger, right where the wedding band sits. For some people, it can happen shortly after putting on a ring for the first time. But, it can also develop, seemingly out of nowhere, after wearing a ring for years. It's not what people mean when they refer to the "seven-year itch," but it can still be troubling. There are two common causes of ring rash. Soap or some other material can get trapped under the ring and starts causing irritation. You can check if that's the case by washing your wedding band and seeing if the irritation clears up. However, in other cases, wedding ring dermatitis is caused by an allergy to the metal in the ring itself. It's estimated that 10% to 15% of the population have some form of metal hypersensitivity. The most common metal allergy is to nickel. Other less common metal allergies include sensitivities to copper, cobalt, and chromium.
What Are Some Solutions to Wedding Ring Allergies?
While you can treat the rash with over-the-counter and prescription creams, the best solution to ring rash caused by metal hypersensitivity is to choose hypoallergenic wedding rings. If you already own a wedding ring you have developed an allergy to, you can have its inner surface sealed with a clear protective coating to keep the metal from touching your skin. In a pitch, some folks coat the inside of their ring with clear nail polish, but a professional coating will last longer.
What Is Hypoallergenic Jewelry?
Hypoallergenic jewelry uses high-quality metals and materials that are less likely to trigger allergic reactions in people with metal allergies. Hypoallergenic wedding bands are important for grooms with metal allergies because it allows them to participate in this time-honored tradition without causing themselves harm or discomfort. Since metal allergies vary in type and level of sensitivity, hypoallergenic wedding rings can be on a spectrum. Precious metals are often mixed with other metals like nickel and copper, to make them easier to craft into jewelry pieces. Trace amounts of these metals might not trigger a reaction in someone with a slight allergy. Grooms with a stronger sensitivity to these metals will need to shop for wedding rings crafted with higher amounts of precious metals or wedding bands that don’t contain any metals they are allergic to.
Is Titanium Hypoallergenic?
Good news, it is! Titanium is a favorite hypoallergenic metal because it is durable and affordable. Titanium wedding bands are also lightweight and very comfortable, especially for grooms new to wearing jewelry.
Is Platinum Hypoallergenic?
Platinum is also a popular hypoallergenic option. It’s a highly prized precious metal and is renowned for its durability. But, with value comes a high price tag. Platinum is even more expensive than gold wedding rings, and when it comes to being hypoallergenic, you should make sure a platinum ring is not made with cobalt if you have sensitive to that metal.
Is Sterling Silver Hypoallergenic?
Generally, sterling silver is hypoallergenic, but it can still cause allergic reactions in some cases. Since sterling silver is 92 percent pure silver and 7.5% percent of another metal like copper or zinc, it might not be a good wedding band if those metals trigger your allergies. It also is a very soft metal that easily tarnishes, so a groom will have to give his silver ring a lot of care if it’s going to stand the test of time.
Other Hypoallergenic Wedding Ring Options
Several other hypoallergenic materials might be perfect for your wedding ring! Tungsten is very sturdy and durable but can be a bit heavy on the hand. Wood makes for a distinctive, lightweight wedding ring that is comfortable to wear, but wood wedding bands will need a stunt double made of silicone or leather when you are doing strenuous activities. Ceramic wedding rings are a great hypoallergenic option for the active guy, as they are lightweight, durable, and scratch resistant. Do keep in mind that ceramic rings cannot be resized, so you will have to switch out rings if your ring size changes.
Hopefully, you know a little more about your options for hypoallergenic wedding bands now. Your wedding band should remind you of what you cherish most, not a bothersome allergy. Whether you choose titanium, platinum, silver, or tungsten, remember your ring should not only be comfortable but should also tell your story. At Rustic & Main, we handcraft wedding bands and rings that tell stories. We handcraft wedding bands from gold and silver to hypoallergenic titanium and wood. We specialize in custom-made-to-order rings, made from our selection of unique materials or even customer-provided ones. To find your perfect hypoallergenic wedding band, take our quick ring-style quiz!