Debunking Misconceptions About Recycled Wedding Rings


November 15, 2023
Words by Lauren Ertl
Photos courtesy of various

As we celebrate National Recycling Day, the spotlight turns to conscious choices that extend beyond the recycling bin and into our cherished moments, like engagements and weddings. One significant way couples can make a positive impact is by choosing ethically crafted and environmentally conscious wedding rings. Below, we address common misconceptions about recycled jewelry with insights from two prominent, eco-friendly jewelry companies, Greenwich St. Jewelers and Ring Bear.

Ring Bear accessories and ring sizing kit

Misconception #1: Lower Quality Compared to Newly Mined Gold

One prevalent myth surrounding recycled jewelry is that it is of lower quality compared to newly mined gold. However, Greenwich St. Jewelers clarifies that recycled gold goes through a refining process to achieve the same purity as newly mined gold. Couples need not worry about compromised quality when choosing recycled metals for their wedding rings.

Hand wearing wedding ring set

Misconception #2: Limited in Style

Another misconception is that recycled jewelry is limited in style. Greenwich St. Jewelers encourages couples to explore the diverse options available in recycled materials. In fact, they suggest considering antique or post-consumer diamonds, emphasizing the responsible use of existing materials to give them a new life. Sustainable choices don’t mean compromising on style or aesthetics.

A watch laid with a set of wedding rings on a leather display

Misconception #3: Doesn’t Make Much of an Environmental Impact

Some may think that choosing recycled jewelry doesn’t have a significant environmental impact. However, Ring Bear challenges this notion by actively addressing the environmental challenges of the jewelry industry. By using recycled gold and platinum, they contribute to a whopping 97% reduction in environmental harm, showcasing the substantial positive impact that sustainable choices can have.

Female hand wearing three band wedding ring set

Misconception #4: There’s No Accreditation Process

To ensure the authenticity of recycled metals, Greenwich St. Jewelers emphasizes their commitment to responsible sourcing. They source 100% recycled precious metals verified by SCS Global Services Certification and are members of The Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC), an international organization ensuring ethical and environmental practices. This accreditation process ensures that couples can trust the sustainability claims of their chosen jewelers.

Four different styles of grooms wedding rings

Misconception #5: Custom Designs and Repair Work Don’t Use Recycled Metals

Greenwich St. Jewelers further addresses the misconception that custom designs and repair work don’t use recycled metals. In reality, their in-house ASTRA, Chroma, Gilded, G.St Ceremony, and Sycamore Studio collections, along with custom designs and repair work, all incorporate 100% recycled precious metals, showcasing their commitment to sustainability across all aspects of their business. 

“Weddings are meant to be celebrated,” comments David Schoenfeld, the founder of Ring Bear. “With that being said, weddings are a one-time use event. Anywhere couples can look to incorporate sustainable choices into their wedding day can help align with their values and is often appreciated by guests.”

By debunking these common misconceptions about recycled jewelry, we hope to empower couples to make informed and conscious choices that contribute to a greener and more responsible world.

Photos courtesy of (in order of appearance): Greenwich St. Jewelers (1, 3, 5); Ring Bear (2, 4, 6)

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