9 Most Popular Hypoallergenic Metals for Rings

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If you are looking for everyday-wear jewelry, like rings and bracelets, it is crucial to find one made of metal that is comfortable for your skin. As such, you have to know which metals are safe for sensitive skin and which are not. Here is a list of 9 hypoallergenic metals for rings.

Not all people have skin types that can handle all kinds of metals in their jewelry. One in five people is allergic to certain metals used in the making of jewelry.

If you have skin redness, itchiness, irritation, inflammation, or rashes on your finger from wearing your favorite ring, you likely have metal allergies. Luckily, there are several hypoallergenic metals to choose from if you have sensitive skin. Therefore, what are 9 hypoallergenic metals for rings? Here I also write for a post on Top 10 Hypoallergenic Metals for Engagement Rings

If you guys want to know more about the wedding or engagement ring metals, you guys can check the link to read.

 

9 hypoallergenic metals for rings

Many people believe that ‘hypoallergenic’ metals are those that are entirely free of allergens – unfortunately, this is false. Similarly, many people consider true is that nickel-free jewelry is synonymous with hypoallergenic metals.

The term ‘hypoallergenic’ refers to materials that are less likely to cause allergic reactions. In turn, hypoallergenic metals are those metals that contain ‘slight’ or ‘below normal’ allergens. However, they can still cause allergic reactions, although rarely. People with sensitive skin still have a wide array of hypoallergenic metals to choose from when it comes to everyday wear rings. Let us discuss some popular hypoallergenic metals for rings.

 

1.Platinum

Platinum metal is a soft and white precious metal, meaning it is quite expensive in the jewelry market. Platinum is more dense and rare than gold; thus, its high price tag. Usually, jewelry manufacturers use it as an alloy with 90%-95% pure platinum and perhaps 5% iridium, palladium, or ruthenium since they are also hypoallergenic metals.

However, consult your jeweler to make sure the other metal combined with platinum is hypoallergenic. It could have some amounts of cobalt metal, which causes several allergic reactions for most people with sensitive skin.

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Platinum is highly durable as it can last for many generations without tarnishing or plating, making it perfect for heirloom pieces. It is also scratch-resistant, unlike gold, which is a soft metal. This metal is a noble metal as it is corrosion-resistant and develops a lustrous patina finish (a matte-like finish that develops when the scratch on the metal moves to a different part) over time.

For those with active lifestyles, platinum is an excellent choice due to its super durability and timeless hue. More so, jewelry makers do not have to alloy it with other metals since it is very malleable with a rating of 3.5 on the Mohs scale.

Pros

  • It is highly hypoallergenic
  • Very durable as it lasts forever, if not for a long time
  • Resistant to scratches and corrosion
  • It does not tarnish or oxidize

Cons

  • It is an expensive and rare precious metal
  • Platinum rings are available in fewer designs as compared to other hypoallergenic metals

 

2.Palladium

From the platinum group of metals, palladium is best for those with gold allergies. Palladium is a naturally white metal that is quite rare and super durable. It is harder than platinum, with a rating of 4.8 on the Mohs scale. As such, it is harder to scratch than platinum.

This hypoallergenic metal is light in weight and is well-known for its catalytic properties as it absorbs gas in high volumes. Jewelry makers expose this luxurious metal to high temperatures and cool it down, making it extremely hard and strong with the ability to accommodate various designs. Palladium is also resistant to corrosion, oxidation, and tarnishing.

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 As a noble metal, Palladium does not require alloying as its color lasts forever. Often, jewelry makers use it in 95% purity, making the jewelry piece durable and pure. Any design that is achievable with platinum can also be made in palladium. Since its discovery in 1802, Palladium has grown immensely in popularity in the jewelry industry.

Pros

  • It is a hypoallergenic metal with 95% purity in jewelry
  • It is more affordable than platinum metal
  • Resistant to oxidation, tarnishing, and corrosion
  • It consists of a luxurious white hue and is exceptionally durable
  • Lightweight metal and highly malleable

Cons

  • It is not as popular as platinum
  • Some jewelry makers shy away from maintaining, creating, or resizing palladium jewelry as they are unaware of its workability.

 

3.18kt yellow gold

The most hypoallergenic metal in the gold family is the 18kt yellow gold. Being more hypoallergenic than white gold, it consists of 18 parts gold (75%) and six parts alloy, which is often silver and copper. Pure gold contains 24kt, meaning it has 24 out of 24 parts gold.

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It is quite difficult to use pure gold in making jewelry since it is incredibly soft. 18kt gold means it is 18 out of 24 parts gold, making it more workable than pure gold. It is also more hypoallergenic than white gold, as the latter combines with nickel for a more silver-like appearance.

18kt gold is yellow gold that retains its color as it ages. This variation of gold consists of an impressive combination of strength and gold purity, making it a preferable choice for ring makers. It is denser and harder than 14kt gold, ascertaining its durability when it comes to everyday wear jewelry.

This hypoallergenic metal has an effortless gleaming silver shine, which makes it eye-catching from a mile away. It complements other gemstones, like sparkling diamonds, in your jewelry, and ultimately blends with a variety of colors like red, blue, and green.

Pros

  • It has a long-lasting shine
  • It is purer than 14kt gold
  • Versatile as it blends well with other gemstones
  • Durable
  • A hypoallergenic metal

Cons

  • It is expensive

 

4.Cobalt chrome

Although not preferred by some, cobalt alloy is a great hypoallergenic metal used in the making of rings. It is also used as an alloy in orthopedic and dental implants. This transition metal is a naturally-occurring metal that is commonly found together with nickel in their mines.

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Jewelry makers combine cobalt and chromium to increase the tensile strength and durability of cobalt. Cobalt chrome is a beautiful hypoallergenic metal alloy with a bright and white-silver appearance and consists of 66-68% cobalt, 26-28% chromium, and approximately 6% molybdenum.

Common for making men’s wedding bands, cobalt chrome is wholly inert and bio-degradable. This metal alloy does not chip, tarnish, or break due to its strength and scratch-resistant nature. It is also an affordable option for rings and is resizable. Similarly, it does not oxidize easily, meaning it does not need plating to restore its appearance.

Pros

  • Attractive white appearance
  • Affordable
  • It is scratch-resistant and does not tarnish, break, or chip
  • It is a hypoallergenic metal
  • Very durable

 Cons

  • Depending on the amount of cobalt used, it may cause an allergic reaction among those with cobalt allergies

 

5.Sterling silver

Pure silver metal is quite soft and malleable for use in the jewelry industry. As a result, most manufacturers prefer using sterling silver, which contains 92.5% of pure silver and 7.5% other metals, like copper.

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This metal is also hypoallergenic, although they are not very durable for everyday wear jewelry, like rings and bracelets. As such, they undergo rhodium plating to prevent tarnishing. Before buying rings made from sterling silver, you must ascertain that the other metal in the alloy is hypoallergenic to prevent allergic reactions on your skin over time.

Pros

  • A hypoallergenic metal
  • It has an appealing bright white and lustrous shine
  • An affordable precious metal

Cons

  • It tarnishes quite quickly, gaining a dark coat
  • It can scratch

 

6.Stainless steel

There are various grades of stainless steel alloys available all over the world. In the jewelry industry, it is often stainless steel made of 0.045% phosphorus, 0.03% sulfur, 0.75% silicon, 0.1% nitrogen, and 2% manganese. This stainless steel alloy is durable, strong, and is hypoallergenic. Similarly, it does not tarnish easily and is versatile, as it can be made into a variety of designs.

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Also known as surgical stainless steel, this metal is a popular option for body and fashion jewelry. Despite its unique and strong nature, some stainless steel alloys used in making jewelry contains non-hypoallergenic metals, like nickel and lead.

Pros

  • It does not tarnish quickly
  • Durable and strong
  • Hypoallergenic metal
  • It makes various unique and versatile designs
  • Affordable

 Cons

  • Some stainless steel alloys may contain nickel, which is a common allergen for many people with sensitive skin

 

7.Tungsten carbide

Tungsten carbide is another modern hypoallergenic metal used in the making of jewelry. It consists of carbon and tungsten, whereby exposure to high temperatures combines them. Jewel makers combine tungsten with carbon to make it scratch resistant. Some tungsten carbide rings may contain nickel due to various production methods implemented to save up on costs.

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Tungsten carbide jewelry is lustrous, long-lasting, and has high tensile strength. Many people believe that tungsten carbide rings cannot be taken off during emergencies due to its strength-however; this is a misconception. Rings made from tungsten carbide are four times stronger than titanium rings, with a rating of 8-9 on the Mohs scale.

Pros

  • Extremely durable
  • Stronger than diamonds
  • Scratch-resistant
  • Lustrous and affordable metal alloy

Cons

  • It may contain traces of lead and nickel

 

8.Titanium

If you are looking for a cheap hypoallergenic metal, titanium is the ideal choice. It is also quite light in weight, making it an excellent choice for those who do not like wearing jewelry but appreciate the comfort of titanium rings.

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Similarly, titanium is resistant to bending, scratch-resistant, and very strong. As such, jewelry manufacturers can make innovative and versatile designs using titanium for a distinct and attractive finish. It is also non-toxic and corrosion-resistant.

Pros

  • Hypoallergenic metal
  • It is long-lasting with high tensile strength
  • It is used to make unique and distinct designs
  • It is resistant to scratches, cracks, and corrosion
  • Inexpensive and lightweight metal

 Cons

  • It is not resizable

 

9.Ceramic (ceramic carbide)

Although it is not a metal, jewelry-grade ceramic rings contain titanium carbide and are 100% hypoallergenic, lightweight, scratch-resistant, and non-conductive.

They are incredibly hard and have a long-lasting shine. Available in black or brittle white hues, ceramic rings are an innovative alternative to standard alloys. Black ceramic rings have a rating of 8 on the Mohs scale.

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Pros

  • A hypoallergenic and inexpensive option for rings
  • Lightweight, durable, and non-metallic option
  • Resistant to scratches
  • Comfortable to wear and comes in a variety of colors and designs

Cons

  • It is not a metal
  • It is hard and can easily crack and break off on hard surfaces

 

Conclusion

It is a worthwhile task to discover which metals make your skin react. Always read the labels and find out the individual metals used in the making of your preferred ring.

Some common allergens used in the making of jewelry include nickel, lead, and copper- the most popular being nickel. With numerous hypoallergenic options for rings, you can easily find one that suits your personality and lifestyle.

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