When you think of any hip hop icon or rap star, what’s the one thing that comes to mind? Most likely, it’s their expensive outfits draped with stunning and expensive chains.
Chains have been a staple of hip hop culture for years, and now, they’re making their way into mainstream fashion just like hip hop songs made their way into mainstream music. For that reason, it’s important to be stocked up on tons of chain options so that you have one for every occasion.
With that said, you can’t just grab the first chain you lay your eyes on. There are a number of things to consider before you max out the credit card, so let’s walk through the most important ones.
1. Diamond Shape
One of the most important elements of a chain is less about the links themselves but rather what sits on top of them. The diamonds that ice out your chain will make or break how it compliments your look.
The four C’s of diamond buying are essential to understand when it comes to looking for a chain that matches your style. And the first C is cut, which refers to the shape of the diamond.
Round cut diamonds are great, neutral choices if you’ve never worn a chain before. But if you want to stand out in a crowd, you may want to go for something like an emerald cut diamond chain with rectangular gemstones.
It comes down to personal preference, but certain styles reflect different personalities, so make sure you pick one that matches your own.
2. Diamond Size
The second C is carat or the size of the diamond. Some people may want a chain that contains few giant rocks that are impossible to miss. If this matches you, you’ll want diamonds with a high karatage.
However, if you like the look of multiple, smaller diamonds that each reflect the light differently every time you move, you’ll want to consider chains with a high number of low karat diamonds. This diamond prong Cuban chain is a great example.
Size can also dictate the price of your piece. Typically, diamonds with smaller karatage are much less expensive than larger rocks. However, diamond simulants can help you achieve your chain goals without breaking the bank.
3. Diamond Color
The third C is color, but it doesn’t mean exactly what you think. The color of your chain has to do with the base metal, not the diamond itself. So why is diamond color important when picking a chain?
Diamonds can naturally take on a yellowish or brownish hue. While it’s not normally noticeable to the naked eye, you want to take care to make sure that your gemstones look as pristine as possible so that they don’t distract from the rest of your look.
4. Diamond Clarity
The final C is clarity, which refers to the lack of blemishes or scratches on the diamond. While many blemishes are not noticeable to the naked eye, you still want to make sure you’re getting a high-quality gem for the price you’re paying.
You want to make sure your diamonds are ranked VS or higher, which means that any inclusions on the diamond are “very small” and unnoticeable with the naked eye.
5. Pendant or No Pendant?
Once you’ve got the gemstones figured out, the next step is to think about whether or not you’ll be adding a pendant to your chain. Pendants are one of the best and easiest ways to bring some individuality to your look. And when you can have full control to customize your own, why not throw one on?
The thing is, pendants need to hang onto a fairly thin chain, or else they won’t fit. You’ll want to make sure that your chain is around 3 mm in width if you want to be able to sport your favorite pendant the next time you head out. With that said, you may be able to make it work with a chain that’s upwards of 5 mm in width.
6. Get a Grasp on the Clasp
Unless you want to end up like Chris Evert during her tennis chain mishap that gave the iconic bracelets their name, you also need to consider the type of clasp that’s being used to keep your chain and precious jewels together.
There are many types of clasps, though box clasps tend to be the easiest to use while still being extremely sturdy. Not to mention, they offer a large surface area that can be iced out with even more diamonds and gold.
7. Gold Plating or Solid Gold?
The diamonds on your chain only look as good as the metal it’s attached to, and deciding whether or not to go with solid gold or gold plating is a major factor to consider.
Solid gold is durable and wear-resistant, but it’s much more expensive than gold plating. Gold plated jewelry still uses real gold; it’s just a thinner layer over top of a different base metal. The end result is a visually identical piece; it’s just more susceptible to wear and tear.
In general, if you’re willing to keep up with more maintenance, a gold-plated piece is fine. But if you really want to impress the people around you without much effort, you’ll want a solid gold piece.
8. Base Metal
When picking a chain, you want to make sure that the base metal is strong and sturdy enough to be worn for years without losing its essence. Typically, the best base metals tend to be gold, silver, or stainless steel.
9. What’s Your Style?
One of the most important factors to consider when picking a chain is your own personal style. If you’re someone who likes to stick to trends and wear jewelry that makes you look more poised and professional, something like this Round Cut Tennis Chain is the right pick for you.
However, if you want to set some new trends and stand out from the pack, you may want to consider going for something with a bit more flash like this 2 Tone Prong Baguette Cuban Chain. It’s all about deciding what you want your jewelry to do to your look as a whole.
10. Is It Guaranteed?
The final thing to consider before swiping your card is whether or not your chain is going to be guaranteed. Your chain is an investment, especially if you’re thinking about getting a solid gold chain.
Lifetime guarantees that allow you to work with a retailer to get a replacement or refund due to normal wear and tear are essential, as it proves that the jeweler has confidence in the quality of their pieces. And if something goes wrong, they’re committed to making things right.
6 Ice’s high-quality jewelry comes with a lifetime guarantee that sets the standard extremely high.
Buying a chain is an exciting investment, but it’s also one that shouldn’t be made haphazardly. By taking these ten factors into consideration, you can make sure that your new piece is one that you’ll be proud to wear for years to come.