The use of a wedding ring by men was not common until recently. The wearing of a man wedding ring is only relatively recent whereas women have worn wedding rings for eons. The use of rings as a symbol of everlasting love enshrined in marriage can be traced back thousands of years. But not so much for men.
It was, in fact, during the second world war that the use of wedding rings by men became more common. (Note that mens wedding rings and men’s wedding bands are interchangeable, both meaning the same thing.)
Prior to the war men didn’t generally wear a wedding ring at all, however during the war it became common for soldiers to declare their marital status by the wearing of a ring when they went to war. They were happy to make public their commitment to their wife by the wearing of a public symbol that declared that commitment to all. Given that this habit of wearing men’s wedding bands was reasonably new it was all the more creditable that these men were willing to forego the marital obscurity available to them from not wearing a ring and actively chose to make a public statement about their choice.
Since then it has become fashionable for the modern man to wear a man wedding ring. Certainy it is as common for a man to wear a ring as not. This may be due to several factors. The modern man may consider it his duty to choose to make the same public marital statement as his wife will. And his wife may well consider it a condition of the marriage that he do so. After all, in these days of equality, if she is prepared to make a statement then should he not do so as well?
The wearing of a wedding ring by a woman is, of course, almost universal. Many women do not even consider the possibility of not wearing one. Often, however, a man usually considers the wearing of a man wedding ring very carefully.
So what should he, and they, consider? Firstly, is he concerned about a public display of his marital status? Some men, whether rightly or wrongly, are threatened by this. Others are not in the least concerned.
Secondly whilst the wearing of jewellery by women is so common as to go unremarked that is not necessarily the case for men. Many men have never considered wearing jewelry and may never consider it again. Men often do not feel comfortable wearing jewellery. Whilst some men see their wedding band as different to wearing ordinary jewellery, others feel just the same as if they were being asked to wear ear rings. “It’s just not done by men”. The author, for example, wears a man wedding band, but would never consider wearing any other form of jewellery.
And what does a ring feel like? Many men have never experienced the wearing of a ring before. Is it heavy? Does it rub? Silly as it may seem to women this can be of concern to some men.
(If this genuinely is of concern it is quite possible to find a cheap jewellery shop, buy the cheapest ring available and wear it for a while. See exactly what it feels like. And find out your size at the same time.)
And another issue arises for some men. “Real men” don’t wear rings or jewellery at all. This is becoming less of an issue as the wearing of a man’s wedding ring becomes more common, or in fact fashionable, but is still an issue with many men.
And in many cultures the wearing of wedding rings by men would never be considered. Is it appropriate in your culture that a man wears a man wedding band? And how about your religion? Would your religious convictions accept the wearing of male jewelry? For many, not a problem. But for some!
There are also practical considerations. Many men are engaged in trades where the wearing of a man wedding band would be downright dangerous. Although unlikely it is quite possible for a ring to get caught in machinery. In some jobs a ring cannot be worn on the job, and must be removed. And this doesn’t just apply to men either. Women can also have the same problem in their jobs.
Ultimately though, the wearing of a men’s ring is just one of the many choices the man will have to make once he makes the commitment to marry. And it may be one of the first joint decisions made by a couple once they have decided to get married.
And some men are a little concerned about which finger to wear the ring on. Should it be the ring finger, like women, or is it different?
Generally a man’s wedding band is worn on the ring finger, the same as for women. The ring finger, for those unmarried men not familiar with the concept, is the fourth finger of the left hand. This is considered to be the finger closest to the heart.
This notion came originally from the ancient Greeks who believed that this finger had an artery which flowed straight to the heart. Whilst anatomically incorrect this makes for good fable.
Once the man or couple have made the decision to purchase a men’s wedding ring for him there are still choices to make.
Do they want to wear a matching set? Or does he prefer that his ring looks quite different to his wife’s. It is perfectly possible for a couple to buy a ring set where the style of the rings match perfectly, or even with matching engraved messages of love.
But if the couple choose to wear a mathching ring set there are still some differences between his ring and hers. It is more common for the man’s wedding ring to be wider than the woman’s. This is because men’s hands and women’s hands are different. A woman usually has narrower finer fingers, and so a narrower band suits her hand. A man on the other hand has wider chunkier fingers and so a wider man wedding band is more suited.
As a result a mans ring, often in the same style as his wife’s ring, can be more expensive than hers because his is wider and uses more material.
There are many unusual styles available now. Modern ring designs are stunning with many craftsman coming up with many fantastic comtemporary designs. The choices are huge.
Even so many men prefer a simple unadorned band. This is a very popular style. However many men prefer very unnusual and unique rings which are very different to many other mens wedding bands found on the market. Many men like to make a loud statement with their ring. The wearing of, for example, very wide and highly adorned Celtic rings is becoming much more common.
When considering the styles of men’s wedding rings it is well worth thinking about the personality of the individual. While different men have very different personalities different rings will suit different personalities as well. A loud outgoing man, for example, can wear a loud outgoing unique men’s ring.
Traditional ring materials are gold and silver, particularly in womens rings. But more recently Titanium or Platinum are both becoming more popular. Whilst diamonds are not, of course, as popular with men as with women, they also make a clear statement which pleases some men who choose them. Diamond men’s rings clearly say “I can afford it” or at least the big ones do. But it can be a brave man who chooses to wear a large diamond band.
Ultimately there are no rules about choosing a man wedding band. The couple first have to make the decision, will he or won’t he? Once that decision is made in the affirmative then there is a whole world of choice about styles, widths, materials and the type of statement the ring makes, both for the man and the woman.
But once he has his ring on it is rare that he decides that he doesn’t like it. And even if he doesn’t, it is rare that the woman will let him take it off!