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  • 6 min read

As bars, restaurants, and clubs begin to slowly open back up again, it’s important to make sure we’ve got some great looks at our disposal. And with fashion trends changing every year, we need to keep up with their evolution to ensure we’re always looking our best.

Even though your clothes and shoes play an important role in your overall appearance, one of the best ways to up your style game is by accessorizing with jewelry. Perhaps one of the most versatile pieces is the tennis chain.

Tennis chains are gender-neutral options that look great around the neck or around the wrist. They’ll make a bold statement from the moment you walk back into the club. So regardless of whether you own zero or one hundred tennis chains, let’s take a look at some of the best options for 2021.

What Exactly Is a Tennis Chain?

Tennis chains contain small diamonds or gems connected by a thin wire band. You can find tennis chains in bracelets, necklaces, or even anklets. They’re very popular jewelry options because of the number of gemstones in each piece, giving them an iconic luster that is unmatched by many other pieces.

Despite the fact that this chain style has been around since the 1920s, the name “tennis chain” is actually fairly new. At the 1987 U.S. Open, tennis playerChris Evert was in the middle of a largely important match. However, her diamond bracelet came unclasped, and she requested to pause the game and retrieve the loose pieces before continuing.

Since then, that specific style of diamond wristwear became known as a tennis bracelet, and there are variations with even more extravagant designs.

Evert’s mishap on the court skyrocketed these pieces into the world of jewelry, making them necessary accompaniments to your wardrobe.

How To Assess the Quality of a Tennis Chain

When buying tennis chains, or really any piece of jewelry, there are a few factors to consider to make sure that your investment will be worthwhile.

Structure of the Chain

Unless you want your chain links flying all over the place like Evert’s courtside accident, you’ll want to make sure that your tennis chain uses high-quality materials in its construction.


2021 Tennis Chain Buying Guide

19mm Diamond Figaro Chain White Gold


One of the best indicators of the piece’s security is its clasp. Ring and pear clasps are standard for most necklaces and bracelets, but their thin metal might put your piece at risk. A secure alternative is achain with a box clasp, which clicks into place and provides extra protection for your precious gems.

Not to mention, these are easier to click together than standard clasps and are thick enough to be iced out on their own. 

The type of metal used in the base of the chain is also extremely important to keep in mind. Base metals provide the structure and longevity of a piece. Sturdy bases are usually composed of stainless steel or sterling silver, as these are high quality and have major longevity. This factor is especially important if you have sensitive skin, so if you have anickel allergy, you’ll want to make sure to go with stainless steel.

Type of Gemstone

Tennis chains look their best when iced out with some diamonds. But pure diamonds are extremely expensive, and certain alternatives look and feel cheap.

That said, Cubic Zirconia is a popular diamond simulant because of its similarity to the real thing, as well as its durability. Diamonds and diamond simulants are assessed on a quality scale determined by theGemological Institute of America. The rankings range from Very Very Slightly Included (VVS) all the way down to Included (I). A simulant diamond with a VVS ranking is a very high-quality gem that will look exceptional on your wrist or neck.

Tennis Chain Styles 2021

Tennis chains vary by style, and they’ve historically been very subdued and nuanced, providing just a little kick to your outfits. However, recent trends are shifting towards bold, big chains that are sure to be a conversation starter at the next function.

Here are some different types of chains that are sure to be a hit this year.

Figaro Chains

There are few chains that can amount to the pure excellence of a Figaro chain. This type of jewelry originated in Italy and is known for its flattened links that can vary in size. Typically, there are two or three smaller links that are then joined together by a longer one.

While a classic gold chain looks great at any moment,white gold Figaro chains look especially icy. These pair great with darker colored clothes because the metallic sheen will truly pop. Figaro chains are a perfect addition for a night out downtown.

Cuban Chains

Another popular bulky chain style is the Cuban chain. Although its origins are largely unknown, Cuban chains are variations of a standard cable link with oval rings that intersect in a rope pattern. They are a perfect combination of subtlety and flashiness, making them great for first-time chain-wearers.


2021 Tennis Chain Buying Guide

Diamond Prong Rose Gold Chain


Cuban chains can come in all sorts of colors, including classics like gold and white gold. However, if you really want to get people talking, go for a stunningDiamond Prong Rose Gold Chain. Rose gold looks especially icy on white or black shirts, as these will really allow the pink hues to shine.

Baguette Chains

If you’re looking for something where the gemstones are the star of the show, Baguette chains are a familiar style that is really easy to pull off. These have a similar appearance to tennis bracelets, with each gemstone being connected to each other by a metal strand. This chain looks awesome with any outfit.

Since the gems themselves are going to be the focus of these pieces, you want to make sure that the metal base is complimenting them nicely. Baguette chains with 18k gold base metals add great contrast to the dazzling gems. This is especially great if you like wearing lighter colors, as it will help outline the diamonds and make them pop.

Cushion-Cut Cluster Chains

Cushion-Cut Clusters are just as fun to wear as they are to say. Similar to a Baguette chain, these don’t look much different from a tennis bracelet that you might already own. Cushion cuts are just a bit more rounded on the edges when compared to the square Baguettes. 


2021 Tennis Chain Buying Guide

Cushion-Cut Tennis Chain in White Gold 


Their smooth appearance makes them perfect for matching with other accessories. Pairing aCushion-Cut Tennis Chain in White Gold with a Round Cut Diamond Tennis Bracelet will provide a symmetry and parallelism to your look that will make you look and feel like a champion.

How to Complete Your Look

Throwing a tennis chain around your neck is a surefire way to add flair to your outfit without putting in too much effort. But in 2021, it’s all about making huge moves. Here are some ways that you can really make the most out of your jewelry with other accessories.

Add Tennis Bracelets

If you’ve already got a tennis chain around your neck, why not put another (or two, or three) around your wrist? 


2021 Tennis Chain Buying Guide

8.5mm Diamond Figaro Bracelet White Gold


The same chain styles that are used in necklaces can be found in bracelets as well, and wearing two of the same type of link can give you a really refined look. For example, toss on aFigaro bracelet to perfectly match a Figaro necklace. This makes for a classy and respectable look.

However, there is nothing wrong with mixing it up a bit. A Figaro chain could look just as good with a Cuban, Baguette, or Cushion-Cut piece, and diversifying your style is vital if you want to keep yourself feeling fresh.

Customize Your Chains

Arguably the best way to make yourself stand out above the rest is by personalizing jewelry yourself. Adding acustom pendant to your favorite chain is a unique idea with tons of potential.


2021 Tennis Chain Buying Guide

Script Custom Letter Pendant


You can customize pendants with your favorite word, phrase, or even photos. Jewelry customization is one of the best ways to show off your sense of self and make a memorable impression with the people you meet.

Wrap Up

2021 is a year of change and return to form. And with that in mind, you want to wear accessories that will highlight your authenticity while simultaneously making a bold statement.

Tennis chains are amazing ways to accomplish this. With so many colors, styles, and customizable additions to choose from, your drip won’t end even when the year does.

And with this endless freedom to express yourself comes with a responsibility to spread your style to the masses. Maybe you’ll be the one setting the trends in 2022.


International Tennis Hall of Famer Chris Evert | Tennis Fame

Nickel Allergy | Mayo Clinic.

GIA: Gemological Institute Of America | All About Gemstones