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3mm vs 5mm Tennis Chain: Which One Should You Get?

on Jul 31, 2023

When it comes to adding that extra shine to your outfit, tennis chain is a go-to accessory for many. Its simple design embellished with a line of dazzling diamonds is a classic choice that suits any occasion. But there's a decision every jewelry enthusiast has to make - "Should I go for a 3mm or a 5mm tennis chain?"

Understanding Chain Thicknesses

How to measure chain thickness

One common misconception that people often have about jewelry, specifically chains, is that the "mm" measurement refers to the length of the chain. However, in the world of jewelry, "mm" stands for millimeters and it denotes the thickness or diameter of the chain, not its length.

So, when we talk about a 3mm or a 5mm tennis chain, we are referring to the thickness of the individual links that make up the chain. This thickness can drastically affect the overall look and feel of the chain. A thicker chain will naturally appear more prominent on your neck, while a thinner one will provide a subtler, more understated look.

The 3mm Tennis Chain

3mm Tennis Chain

The 3mm tennis chain is a go-to piece in the world of modern jewelry. Its intricate, understated design allows it to seamlessly complement various styles and outfits.


Minimalistic Look: The 3mm tennis chain shines in its simplicity. With its delicate links, this chain offers a minimalistic aesthetic.

Fits for Every Occasion: Regardless if you're attending a gala event or just out for a casual meet-up, the 3mm tennis chain has the ability to adjust to any occasion. 

Shine Effect: Despite its thin size, the 3mm tennis chain is packed with considerable sparkle.

Price: A significant advantage of a 3mm tennis chain is its price. More affordable than its thicker counterparts.

Timeless: The design of the 3mm tennis chain is both classic and timeless. This piece of jewelry will never go out of style, making it a worthwhile addition to your collection.

Unisex: The 3mm tennis chain isn't confined to a specific gender; it's a piece both men and women can confidently wear. 

Lightweight: One of the most appreciated qualities of the 3mm tennis chain is its light weight.

Less Prone to Pulling Chest Hair: For men, one underappreciated benefit of a 3mm tennis chain is that it's less likely to tug at chest hair, thanks to its smaller, smoother links.


Smaller Diamonds Shine Less: As the 3mm tennis chain uses smaller gems to maintain its thin profile, these diamonds will not offer the same level of sparkle as their larger counterparts.

Can Flip on the Neck: A characteristic of thinner chains, including the 3mm tennis chain, is their tendency to flip or twist around on the neck. This can sometimes cause minor discomfort and require frequent readjustments to keep the chain properly positioned.

Too Small for Bigger Chests: If you have a larger chest or a wider neck, the 3mm tennis chain might appear too subtle or be less noticeable. People with these characteristics may prefer a thicker chain for a more proportionate and appealing look.

Easier to Break: Though they are well-crafted, 3mm tennis chains are inherently more delicate due to their thin design.

The 5mm Tennis Chain

5mm tennis chain

For those looking for a more thicker piece of jewelry that doesn't sacrifice the minimalist aesthetic, the 5mm tennis chain is a perfect choice. 


Thicker Minimalistic Look: The 5mm tennis chain offers a thicker profile, which leads to a more noticeable presence without veering into excess. It maintains the clean, simple lines of the tennis chain style, while offering more visibility and impact.

Perfect for Classy Occasions: This chain is an excellent choice for formal events or special occasions where you want to make a statement without overpowering your overall look. Its sleek design adds a touch of class and sophistication to any ensemble.

Better Shine Effect: Thanks to larger gemstones, the 5mm tennis chain can deliver a better shine effect compared to the 3mm variant. The increased stone size allows for more light reflection, resulting in a more radiant sparkle.

More Durable and Sturdy: A thicker chain naturally translates to increased durability. The 5mm tennis chain is more resistant to breakage and damage due to its robust construction, making it a lasting piece for your collection.

Unisex: Just like the 3mm counterpart, the 5mm tennis chain appeals to all genders. It's a versatile accessory that suits different styles and preferences, making it a favorite among jewelry enthusiasts.

Doesn't Flip on the Neck: Owing to its weight and thickness, the 5mm tennis chain is less prone to flipping or twisting around the neck, ensuring it stays in place and is comfortable to wear for longer periods.

Lightweight: Despite being thicker, the 5mm tennis chain is still lightweight and comfortable for everyday wear.


Bigger diamonds might start moving inside the prongs: Due to the size of the diamonds, there might be a slight movement within their settings in a 5mm chain. This shouldn't generally be a concern with high-quality products but is something to consider.

Some say It's too "flashy": The bolder and larger aesthetic of the 5mm chain can come across as "flashy" or overly ostentatious for some. While it makes a strong style statement, it might not align with everyone's fashion sense, particularly for those who prefer a more subtle or understated look.

Price: As the diamonds used in a 5mm tennis chain are larger, it naturally increases the total carat weight of the piece. This directly impacts the price, making a 5mm tennis chain a more expensive choice compared to its 3mm counterpart. This could be seen as a worthwhile investment for those who value the bold aesthetics and prominent presence of a 5mm chain.

3mm vs. 5mm Tennis Chain: Which One Should You Get?

When it comes to choosing between a 3mm and 5mm tennis chain, your personal style, lifestyle, and budget play significant roles. If you appreciate a subtle, understated look, the 3mm chain offers a minimalist and lightweight touch of sparkle that can easily transition from professional to casual settings. On the other hand, if you enjoy making a fashion statement and regularly attend events that encourage a bold look, the 5mm chain, with its thicker and more visible design, would be an excellent pick. This chain offers a fantastic pop of sparkle, especially for v-neck or solid-colored outfits. However, keep in mind, the 5mm chain, due to its larger diamonds, tends to be pricier. Ultimately, the choice boils down to what aligns best with your style and comfort. Regardless of the choice, a tennis chain is a chic addition that effortlessly elevates any ensemble.

Have you compared a tennis chain with other types of chains? Here's a comparison article on: "Tennis chain vs cuban link chain - which one to choose?"

Moissanite Tennis Chains - A High Quality Diamond Alternative

moissanite tennis chains

As an admirer of fine jewelry, you may already know that natural diamonds have been the stone of choice for centuries. However, a contender has entered the ring – moissanite. Not only is moissanite a more affordable alternative (typically priced at about a tenth of the cost of diamonds), but it also boasts a spectacular shine effect. Moissanite has a unique ability to refract a rainbow of colors while diamonds reflect only white light. Additionally, the refractive index of moissanite is higher than that of a diamond, causing it to attract more attention from afar due to its fiery brilliance.

Despite its price difference, moissanite does not compromise on durability. Ranking 9.25-9.5 on the MOHS hardness scale, it comes extremely close to a diamond's perfect score of 10, making moissanite an exceptionally hard and scratch-resistant gemstone.

If you're looking to explore the world of moissanite tennis chains, look no further than ICECARTEL. Offering the most competitive prices on the market, ICECARTEL guarantees the highest quality by using VVS clarity moissanite, which is entirely flawless. Not only do you get to enjoy the sparkle and grandeur associated with diamonds, but you do so without the hefty price tag. So, why not explore the possibility of owning a dazzling moissanite tennis chain? It's a choice that marries style, quality, and affordability.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which length chain should I get?

The length of your tennis chain should ideally be determined by your personal style and the occasion. Shorter chains (18-22 inches) sit closer to the neck and are great for a minimalistic and professional look, whereas longer chains (24-30 inches) make more of a statement, perfect for those flashy events or layered with other chains. Ultimately, it's about your personal style preference and comfort. Learn more about chain sizes here!

Is wearing a tennis chain tacky?

Whether or not a tennis chain is considered tacky entirely depends on personal taste and the context in which it's worn. As long as you're rocking your tennis chain with confidence, and it complements your overall look and event, there's no reason why it would be viewed as tacky. Remember, a tennis chain, whether 3mm or 5mm, can be a classy addition to any outfit when worn right.

Which tennis chain is better for a gift?

Both 3mm and 5mm tennis chains can make excellent gifts. It mainly depends on the recipient's style. If they lean towards subtle, understated pieces, a 3mm tennis chain could be perfect. If they prefer something more pronounced and attention-grabbing, a 5mm tennis chain might be a better choice. Always consider the recipient's personal style and preference when gifting jewelry.

Is the thickness between a 3mm and a 5mm noticeable?

Yes, the difference in thickness between a 3mm and a 5mm tennis chain is quite noticeable. A 5mm chain will appear significantly thicker and heavier than a 3mm chain. This difference doesn't just affect the chain's visual appeal but also its weight, how it sits on the neck, and even the price. Always try on different thicknesses before making a purchase to see what feels most comfortable and suits your style.

Last Words

In the end, choosing between a 3mm or 5mm tennis chain comes down to your personal style, comfort, and budget. A 3mm chain offers a more subtle, delicate look, ideal for everyday wear and for those who appreciate the understated elegance. On the other hand, a 5mm chain provides a more robust and flashy presence, making it a perfect statement piece for special occasions or for those who like to make their presence known.

Remember, there's no one-size-fits-all when it comes to jewelry. What matters most is that you feel great wearing it. So whether you decide to go for a 3mm or a 5mm tennis chain, or even try out the increasingly popular Moissanite tennis chains, the choice is all yours. And, trust me, there's nothing quite like the feeling of a cool, weighty chain around your neck, sparkling with every move. Enjoy the process and happy shopping!

    In this article we're going to look into:
    Author: Israel Cubillo
    Author: Israel Cubillo
    Israel Cubillo Was Born in New York City he grew up moving around the US. He is currently working on his bachelor’s of finance and is working on jewelry related content via his YouTube channel. He consistently makes video content on different kinds of jewelry showcasing different styles and brands to his subscribers as well creating informing content to teach his viewers about the complexities of jewelry, additionally giving high quality reviews of items consumers may be looking to purchase. He joined Icecartel team in early 2023 as a jewelry content writer.
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    Author: Israel Cubillo
    Author: Israel Cubillo
    Israel Cubillo Was Born in New York City he grew up moving around the US. He is currently working on his bachelor’s of finance and is working on jewelry related content via his YouTube channel. He consistently makes video content on different kinds of jewelry showcasing different styles and brands to his subscribers as well creating informing content to teach his viewers about the complexities of jewelry, additionally giving high quality reviews of items consumers may be looking to purchase. He joined Icecartel team in early 2023 as a jewelry content writer.

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