Do Silicone Rings Stretch Over Time?
Silicone wedding rings are made of a stretchy and flexible material—silicone rubber—which often leads to the question, “do silicone rings stretch over time?” The answer to this question is no, but it’s important to understand a few caveats about when your ring might stretch, what happens after it stretches, and why that is a good thing.
Understanding the Makeup of Silicone Rings
To learn more about why silicone rings are stretchy, it’s first important to understand what a silicone ring is made of. These rings are made of a silicone rubber material, which consist of a series of long chains of atoms called polymers. Without getting too deep into physics and thermodynamics, there are a couple of factors at work here.
- Entropy – in the scientific world, this is a state of disorder; the Second Law of Thermodynamics says that objects move from a state of order to disorder. The long chains of polymers are normally in a state of disorder, tangled up together randomly. When you stretch the material, the chains lengthen and straighten (becoming more orderly), but without the tension of stretching, they revert to disorder.
- Cross-linking – this is a process of chemically joining polymer chains in silicone rings into a single molecule, which makes it stronger and allows rubber to hold its shape over time. Without cross-links, the silicone would lose its shape after being stretched.
Silicone Rings and Stretch
Silicone wedding rings are made up of a very strong silicone rubber material that is designed to hold its shape over time. Because of the chemical makeup, that material is capable of stretching just enough to be comfortable and allow the ring to move with your fingers.
Silicone rings are ideal for everyday wear because they can adjust as your fingers swell and shrink throughout the day. You probably know that when it’s cold outside or you get in the water your fingers get smaller, and when it’s hot or you’re exerting yourself during exercise your fingers get bigger. If you’re wearing a metal ring that doesn’t stretch at all, those fluctuations can be frustrating—your ring falls off when it’s cold and feels uncomfortably tight when it’s hot.
However, because of the chemical properties of silicone, that slight stretch that keeps it comfortably snug against your finger no matter how much they shrink or swell also allows it to go right back as soon as your fingers return to normal. It won’t stretch out over time because it’s made of that super strong cross-linked silicone material.
There is one caveat here—if you heat up your ring to temperatures above 500 degrees or below -100 degrees Fahrenheit, the silicone may lose its shape. We’re betting that you don’t spend much time at those temperature extremes, though.
Shop for Your Silicone Ring
Check out all the rings available from Enso Rings and find one that stretches just enough to stay comfortable on your fingers at all times.