Cobalt Rings Vs. Tungsten Carbide Rings

cobalt rings

While searching for platinum wedding rings on a very popular online retailer, I came across a Cobalt ring that showed up in the platinum search results. And why did this happen?

Cobalt is not a member of the Platinum Group Metal family. Apparently it has a light “platinum” coating applied to the ring which sells for $79.99. And at that price, there can not be much platinum at all! There is no definition regarding the amount of platinum that is applied to the outside of this design.

I have nothing against the company that is selling this ring or against Cobalt in general, but is it really fair that a Cobalt ring is being positioned along with other popular platinum wedding rings online? Could a consumer assume that Cobalt is related to platinum?

I certainly hope not, as Cobalt and platinum have very little in common. And if I was a company selling a platinum wedding ring online, and this featured Cobalt wedding ring was position alongside my product in a specific category search, then I’d be pretty upset.

Sometimes within the jewelry industry lines are blurred. In my opinion, a Cobalt product has no place on a page dedicated to platinum wedding rings no matter what.

The amount of platinum on the ring can not be very much since the price is under $100.00. As a whole, the jewelry industry needs to help better regulate instances like this, whether it is intentional or just a flaw within the website’s search system. The word “platinum” should not be in the product’s title.

Do tungsten carbide wedding bands contain cobalt?

tungsten carbide rings

Here’s a very interesting question that I found on a blog today – “do tungsten carbide wedding bands from Kay Jewelers contain cobalt?” It turns out that a consumer thinks that they may have an allergic reaction to cobalt, and is trying to avoid it if they can.

And here’s part of the answer – “Just call and ask the store. As far as I know they are. Cobalt is the binder for tungsten-carbide regardless of where you buy them.”

That’s actually a very good answer, although it might also depend on the individual manufacturer of the desired tungsten wedding band. In theory, someone out there may have developed another binding agent, but it’s not like they can openly sell their tungsten formula.

Since there is at least at this time an exclusive limited source due to several US Patents that restrict the availability of tungsten for wedding bands (and therefore has literally a tungsten stranglehold on the jewelry industry), if they use cobalt as a binder, then most brands will have had to follow suit since many purchase from this same company and pay a distribution royalty.

Yes Virginia, there is a tungsten monopoly!!!!

My advice – if you have a possible allergy, stick with a precious metal like platinum or palladium.