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Being in Denver, Colorado, most of the clients that come to us for engagement rings and wedding rings lead really active lifestyles. Whether your an expert ice climbers or a weekend hiker, any level of physical activity can pose major problems to your ring. There’s a misguided but well intentioned belief that you should be wearing your engagement ring or wedding band 24/7 to honor your relationship, but realistically this isn’t practical. No ring is invincible, and unless you don’t mind damaging it there’s a laundry list of occasions where you should take off your ring and special instructions for care. Think about your daily activities, your job, and your hobbies. If you’re rough on your stuff and like to get your hands dirty, you should only consider engagement rings that are best for active lifestyles. This isn’t just for athletes and adrenaline junkies, this is what we advise to anyone who works with their hands or isn’t careful with jewelry.

What are the best engagement rings for active lifestyles?

Simple designs using chunky thick metal with diamond center stones in low profile bezel settings. Avoid dainty thin bands with intricate metal work and gemstones which are softer than diamonds. You also need to steer clear of tiny accent stones and high profile settings.

Rings with Thick Bands

We custom designed The Sam engagement ring for a mother of two who wanted a durable ring for everyday wear.

So you’re having a dinner party and you’ve got a super clumsy accident-prone guest: would you rather serve them a drink in your heftiest beer mug or a super delicate wine glass? The same logic applies here. When you’re looking at rings, move right past the delicate thin designs. They won’t hold up to your active lifestyle…and they actually won’t hold up well for most people over a lifetime of wear. Metal bends, especially if there’s not a lot of it. A ring like The Sam shows a big band that doesn’t sacrifice style for function. We’ve designed many a chunky band for athletes and the all around active.

Bezel Set Center Stones

A bezel setting protects the diamond center stone of The Andrea.

When you’ve got a precious stone, you want to keep it protected–especially if you’re hard on your hands. Instead of leaving your center stone out in the open and vulnerable to damage, keep it secure in a bezel setting. Bezel set stones are completely surrounded by metal, providing a barrier on all outer edges of the stone’s circumference. This type of setting can help prolong the life of your ring by absorbing blows and scratches instead of the center stone.

Diamond Center Stones

Diamonds are a classic for a reason, they’re the toughest stone on the market. The Dawn engagement ring features a diamond centerstone, diamond halo, and diamond band.

For people wanting an active lifestyle ring with a center stone, you should really only consider diamond rings. Diamonds are the hardest stone, and no other stones come even close. How do we know this? Jewelers and geologists alike have been using the Mohs Hardness scale to measure the hardness of gems and minerals for hundreds of years. Diamonds rank a 10 out of 10, meaning that no other known stones are able to scratch them. Moissanite comes in second place, rating a 9.25 and sapphires are a 9, but the Mohs scale isn’t linear. Though their one point apart on the scale, a diamond is much harder…four times as hard as a sapphire.

Large Accent Stones

The Carrie’s oversized halo holds diamonds large enough to be securely held in place.

You know the halo engagement rings and dainty pave bands that are popular right now? They can also be prone to losing those teeny stones because there’s not much metal holding them in place. For the active crowd, go big or go home. Large stones take up more surface area and can be set more securely than their smaller counterparts. We won’t work with accent stones under a certain size because we know they won’t last, especially for self-proclaimed adventure junkies. An engagement ring like The Carrie features center stone framing accent stones, but they aren’t so microscopic that they can’t be securely set.

Skip the Filagree

Intricate metal cut outs like those on The Sherri require lots of special care.

Ornate cut outs are a hallmark of vintage and vintage-inspired ring design like The Sherri, but they’re as high maintenance as they are beautiful. Remember when we talked about thicker being better for active lifestyles? The same goes here, and filigree is basically a web of thin delicate metal. Instead opt for a streamlined design without intricate metal work. A simple band is best.

Low Profile Settings

A low profile like The Kati keeps the ring’s head protected from catching on edges.

Have you ever seen a solitaire engagement ring with a prominent, high profile center stone proudly sprouting off the top? Avoid this style at all costs if you’re not vigilant about caring for your ring. The farther your center stone extends vertically, the bigger the chance that it’s going to hit against something else, be it your car door or pots and pans while cooking. High profile rings are also more likely to snag in sweaters and jacket sleeves, putting pressure on the center stone and setting. Instead, go for a low profile setting that stays closer to your finger and further from risky situations.

Think your engagement ring or wedding ring designs are limited because you need a durable design? Think again. You don’t have to sacrifice style to make a ring that will last a lifetime, and all of the rings we create at our studio are engineered to last. That being said, we do employ special techniques when we know the wearer is super active, works with their hands, or is rough on their jewelry. One extra note for this special type of person: we always recommend taking off your rings when exercising, hiking, camping, swimming, crafting, cooking, bathing, and sleeping. If you forget to take your ring off, sweat and bacteria more easily get trapped inside and can result in rashes. When in doubt, take it off!