How To Polish a Tungsten Ring

How to polish a black tungsten ring

If your tungsten ring is dull, you may need to polish it. Restore your black tungsten wedding band to its full luster and glory with these quick-and-easy how-to’s.

But, a word of caution before you begin. If your black plating has chipped (exposing the natural gray tungsten metal), you should bring it to a jeweler to be re-plated. Cleaning or polishing it could further damage your ring.

And note: none of these cleaning methods should be used on rings with precious or semi-precious stones. Bring your wedding band to a jeweler and leave it in their expert hands to polish.

Related: The 21 Best Matte Black Tungsten Wedding Bands for Men (2022)

How to Polish a Tungsten Ring

  1. Gently rub the surface of your gold plated jewelry using a soft jewelry cloth to help restore its shine
  2. Do not use a polishing cloth as this will strip away the black plating
  3. Do not use a polishing compound on an ion plated black tungsten ring

How to Deep Clean a Tungsten Ring

Black tungsten rings have a thin layer of black ion plating. Because the black-plating is so thin, you need a very gentle cleaning method:

1. In a large bowl, fully dilute a few drops of mild dish soap in warm water. (Undiluted dish detergent will leave dark spots on the silver.)
2. Submerge your ring in the soap water and gently rub it with your fingertips to release the tarnish
3. Rinse the piece under warm water to remove any soap residue
4. Dry the jewelry with a soft lint-free cloth
5. Gently buff the ring with a soft jewelry cloth to bring out its luster and shine

Cleaning Black Tungsten with Vinegar?

Do not to use abrasive substances vinegar, lemon, salt, or cola on your black tungsten wedding band.

These substances tend to corrode ion plated jewelry.

How To Care For Black Tungsten Wedding Bands

While your black tungsten wedding band look stunning, it may wear down after a while. Here are a few tips for taking care of black plated tungsten wedding band so you can wear it longer.

  • Never use basic jewelry cleaners on it because the harsh chemicals will ruin the plating.
  • To clean your black wedding ring, soak it for 10 minutes in warm, bottled water and a mild detergent.
  • If your jewelry has very fine ridges you can use a soft brush.
  • Rinse thoroughly, pat dry (do not rub), and air on a very soft cotton towel.
  • Storing it in tissue paper to avoid rubbing against other jewelry.
  • Always remove your ring when performing household tasks or working out.
  • Remove your ring when applying hand cream, it does contains ingredients that could harm the ring plating.

It is recommended to get your ring professionally cleaned every six months to keep it like new.

Tungsten Carbide Ring Turning Grey

Tungsten is naturally gunmetal gray in color. The black coating is achieved with ion plated titanium alloy. As with other high-quality black plated jewelry like gold and platinum, black tungsten may fade over time and require replating.

Black tungsten also isn’t as scratch resistant as gunmetal gray tungsten which isn’t plated.

How Black Tungsten Rings are Ion Plated

Black tungsten rings are ion plated for color, a process that occurs at a molecular level and is thus more durable than other colorization methods. The process is vastly superior to traditional “wet” plating methods (like electroplating) due to the increased bonding strength.

Jewelers use a special plating technique called PVD (Physical Vapor Deposition). This process involves the application of a titanium alloy by shooting the atomic particles at incredibly velocity on the tungsten. PVD plating is more durable than traditional finishes, however it still doesn’t match the scratch-resistance of natural tungsten.

Ion plated tungsten rings are still highly scratch-resistant (comparable to titanium in hardness), but not as resistant as natural gunmetal gray-toned tungsten carbide. If you want a durable black wedding band, go for ceramic, silicone, or black zirconium.

If you want a scratch resistant ring, order natural gunmetal gray tungsten carbide, without plating.

Black Tungsten Replating

Black tungsten can also be re-plated when needed.

Black tungsten’s ion plating can be damaged through contact with an abrasive chemicals and hard surfaces (metal, wood, tile, etc).

Just like white gold rings, black tungsten rings that lose their color can be re-plated to bring back their black finish.

Replating requires a skilled jewelry repair shop.

Black Tungsten Ring FAQs

Is black tungsten scratch proof?

Tungsten is extremely scratch resistant, but the outer surface of black tungsten rings is titanium which is not as scratch resistant.

Are black tungsten rings waterproof?

You can wear your genuine black tungsten carbide ring in the shower without having to worry about it rusting or corroding. If you forgot to take off your tungsten ring before taking a shower, you can simply air dry your ring right after.

Does black tungsten fade?

Black tungsten rings are still extremely durable, and chemically stable. Ion plating is about 60% more durable than traditional plating.

Is tungsten carbide rust proof?

Tungsten, and especially tungsten carbide, is one of the most durable and scratch-resistant metals to make a ring out of. Additionally, these metals are very corrosion-resistant.

Can you get tungsten rings wet?

Tungsten carbide, which is an alloy of tungsten and carbon, is extremely inert and will not react with humidity or air. The result is a great waterproof material that is perfect for wedding bands.

How long does black tungsten last?

Although IP plating has its expiration date, and can last up to two years, the lifespan of tungsten rings with IP plating can be prolonged, if they are maintained properly. It is recommended to avoid any exposure to water, chemicals, such as chlorine, antibacterial soaps, hairsprays.

What is the difference between tungsten and tungsten carbide?

The purest form of tungsten cannot be used in jewelry as it’s too brittle. To add strength and durability, tungsten is transformed into a metal that contains 85% tungsten and 15% carbon, cobalt, or nickel.

This fused metal is known as tungsten carbide.

When tungsten is combined with carbon, it becomes more stable and easier to work with. Additionally, the cobalt or nickel acts as a binder, holding the metal elements together, allowing it to be molded and shaped.

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Black never goes out of style and black tungsten wedding bands are becoming more and more popular among people who prefer modern and contemporary rings. And we think this fad is here to stay!

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