If TikTok has already enticed you to try some wild trends (see: Chia Pet home decor or Y2K-style hair accessories), then the world of permanent jewelry will come as no surprise. And if you really know, you’ll remember when the pieces first gained prominence last summer through a viral video posted by New York jewelry brand Catbird.
Since then, durable jewelry has found its way onto the wrists of stylish celebs like Jessica Alba, Meghan Markle, Jasmine Tookes, Emma Watson, Rashida Jones, and virtually every fashion editor in the game. No wonder welded bracelets have become one of the hottest jewelry trends of 2022.
Recently, the trend has taken off online, with best friends looking for a trendy way to declare their dedication to one another — often filming a cute TikTok in the process. My best friend and I have matching tattoos of a taco, but perhaps permanent jewelry is a little more sensible for most.
In particular, welded bracelets seem to be preferred over rings, necklaces, and other pieces (all of which you can also buy). You can find simple or meaningful strains in countless places, like Catbird, Astrid & Miyu, and more.
If a long-term commitment to minimalist jewelry has sparked your interest, here’s everything you need to know about welded bracelets, including where to get one for yourself.
What are welded bracelets?
Permanent jewelry is pretty much exactly what it sounds like. Instead of attaching a bracelet with a traditional clasp, welded bracelets are attached with a welding tool so they cannot be removed. This makes the bracelet durable and eliminates the tedious maneuver of closing your own bracelet with just one hand (an almost impossible task if you live alone).
You can’t just weld on any cute bracelet, though. Stores that offer permanent jewelry have a selection of sweat-friendly options online or in person. The most popular styles are delicate single chain bracelets, but you can opt for chunkier styles or add charms for a more customized look. Most brands offer models in 14k gold to avoid skin irritation and tarnishing.
Catbird describes the process of welding permanent jewelry on as “zapping,” but don’t let the gibberish put you off. Unlike a tattoo, it is a painless process. After making your selection – including the material and chain design – your wrist will be measured to ensure the best fit. A jeweler then welds the bracelet shut using a small jewelry welder, often placing a protective material between your wrist and the bracelet to avoid skin contact during the process. Overall it’s quick and easy.
If you do If you want to remove the bracelet at the end, you can use scissors to remove your seamless piece, Astrid & Miyu says. You cannot reattach the bracelet without going to a jeweler. Still, they can last as long as you like, and you can even add (or remove) charms later to change things up.
Where can I get a welded bracelet?
Not all jewelers offer welded bracelets, but with the increasing demand for durable jewelry, more and more trendy retailers are offering this service. Check out some of the most popular jewelry brands below that you can look for a piece that will last a lifetime.
Catbird’s signature Forever bracelets start at $98, with nine chain styles and the option to add diamonds or charms. The Forever bracelet is available in 14k yellow, white, and rose gold, and you can get zaped at either of two locations in New York City.
Astrid & Miyu
Astrid & Miyu originally started in London and have since grown to eight locations in London, one in Manchester and a new location in New York City. You have four permanent bracelet styles to choose from, all available in 9k white or yellow gold and starting from £120.
Loveweld is known for their wide range of welded bracelets, anklets, necklaces and rings, with bracelets in 14k white and yellow gold starting at $100. The brand has five locations in Texas (two are in Austin), one in New York City, Denver and Albuquerque.
Marisa Mason is a small company with two California locations (one in Oakland and one in Santa Barbara) offering welded bracelets in 14k white and yellow gold, with the option to add gemstones and charms. They price their bracelets by the inch, anywhere from $22 to $50 an inch.
LINK X LOU
LINK X LOU has locations in 24 states, from Arizona to Wisconsin. So if you can’t make it to New York City on short notice, they may be your best bet for a permanent jewelry appointment. They offer welded bracelets, anklets, necklaces and rings in 14k white and yellow gold.