Tennis Chain vs Rope Chain: Which One Should You Buy?

Tennis Chain vs Rope Chain: Which One Should You Buy?

Deciding between the tennis chain and the rope chain can be a difficult one. Both chains offer sparkle and shine whilst also being resistant to tangling. But, both chains are different in many other ways including appearance and styling. Both chains have their pros, cons and differences that you should be aware of before purchasing. 

In this blog, we compare the tennis chain vs the rope chain. We’ll weigh up the pros and cons and come up with a conclusion on which one would be better for you!

What Is A Tennis Chain? 

Silver Tennis Chain by Sky Austria

The tennis chain is a chain that consists of a row of diamonds or gemstones. This chain is available in a variety of sizes, widths, materials and even colours to choose from. 

Often these types of chains are made from materials such as gold, silver, brass and stainless steel. Stones within a tennis chain can be set in either a prong or bezel style. This affects the appearance of the stones on the chain. 


  • Resistant to tangling - there is no interlinking within a tennis chain. Each individual part of the chain is linked side by side, allowing the chain to be resistant to tangling. This is because the chain has a limited range of movement.
  • Eye-catching - each diamond or gemstone on the tennis chain shines when wearing it. This makes this an extremely eye-catching piece. 
  • Range of choices - there are many types of tennis chains to choose from. From silver, gold and rose gold tennis chains to tennis chains with blue, pink and black stones. There are even tennis chains made with heart-shaped and triangular gemstones.  
  • Repair - it is easy for a jeweller to repair a tennis chain. All they have to do is solder the tennis chain back together as they would with any other chain.
  • Timeless - the tennis chain is a classic statement piece that will never be out of style.  


  • Expensive - tennis chains utilise diamonds or gemstones within the chain patterns. This means the tennis chain will usually be more expensive than other types of chains.
  • Flexibility - tennis chain necklaces don’t have a large range of freedom to move around. This means any sudden force in a direction the tennis chain doesn’t want to move can cause it to break.
  • Versatility - the shiny nature of the tennis chain means it is better suited for smart and fancy events. It can be quiet hard to match and wear a tennis chain in a casual setting. 
  • Heavy - gemstones and diamonds within the tennis chain increase its weight. This is a negative for those that don't like the feel of a heavy chain around their neck all day.
  • Fragile - the tennis chain is much more fragile than other types of chains. Diamonds or gemstones can fall off during cleaning or just through daily wear and tear.

What Is A Rope Chain? 

3mm rope chain gold

Rope Chain Gold by Sky Austria

The rope chain is a necklace characterised by its twisted links that resemble a rope texture. The chain consists of hundreds of smaller links that form the rope pattern. 

Rope chain necklaces often made from gold, silver, brass and stainless steel. These chains come in a variety of sizes, with the most popular widths being 3mm and 5mm. 


  • Durability - the rope chain is one of the most durable styles of chain. This is because the rope chain consists of links twisted into each other. 
  • Versatility - the rope chain is a great everyday jewellery piece. Wear it with both smart and casual outfits with no problem. They also come in a variety of materials, colours and sizes to choose from. They are also great for putting pendants onto. 
  • Resistant to tangling - links in a rope chain don't interlink together. This makes the chain less likely to tangle. 
  • Cleaning - it is pretty easy to clean a rope chain. All you really need is lukewarm water and mild dish soap to wipe the surface of the chain.
  • Price - the rope chain is one of the more affordable types of chains to choose from. 
  • Eye-catching - the rope chain is simple but still eye-catching. The twisted shape of the rope chain also reflects light well.
  • Timeless - the rope chain is a classic style of chain that will never go out of style


  • Heavy - because of the cylindrical shape of the rope chain, it is a lot heavier than other types of chains. For some, this may be uncomfortable to wear around the neck all day. 
  • Hard to repair - the intricate and complex rope chain structure is hard to repair. You will need to seek a jeweller with experience in repairing rope chains to have it repaired.
  • Potential to get caught - the twisted design of the rope chain means it is common for body hair to get trapped between links. This is more so the case for longer rope chains that dangle and move side to side on the body.
  • Lack of customisation - no opportunities to customise a rope chain with any diamonds or gemstones as links are too small. 
  • Flexibility - the twisted design of the rope chain creates a stiffer chain structure. If you try and bend a rope chain you’ll notice at the middle of the bend that that area will be stiffer. If enough force is applied this can easily break the chain. 

Differences Between The Tennis Chain And Rope Chain

  • Appearance - The tennis chain consists of a continuous row of diamonds. The rope chain consists of links connected to each other to form a rope-like pattern. 
  • Shine - both chains are super shiny, however, the tennis chain has the edge. The tennis chain reflects light better as it features diamonds and or gemstones. 
  • Durability - the rope chain is much more durable than the tennis chain.  With a tennis chain, you risk having diamonds or gemstones fall out with enough abrasion.
  • Weight - both chains are heavier than the average chain. But, the tennis chain is heavier than the rope chain. This is because they feature diamonds or gemstones. 
  • Price - Tennis chains are much more expensive than rope chains. This is because they feature diamonds or gemstones.
  • Maintenance - Rope chains are much easier to clean and just require wiping off the surface.  Tennis chains are harder to clean and keep looking pristine because of the gemstones. 
  • Repairability - for jewellers, the tennis chain is a much easier chain to repair than a rope chain. This is because the tennis chain is simpler in design. 
  • Materials - both chains tend to use metals such as gold, silver, stainless steel or brass. The main difference is that the tennis chain utilises diamonds or gemstones. 
  • Versatility - tennis chains are more suited for smart and fancy occasions. The rope chain works well with both smart and casual occasions. It is also perfect for holding pendants.
  • Styling - the tennis chain is best suited as a statement piece as it is shiny. Whilst the rope chain is a great subtle piece that can be layered with other chains or used to hold pendants. 
  • Clasp - most of the time the tennis chain comes with a box clasp that seamlessly matches the tennis chain design. The rope chain has a simpler lobster clasp most of the time. 

Tennis Chain vs Rope Chain: Which One Should You Get?

Which one of these chains you should get will depend on many personal factors. 

For those looking for a subtle chain that is perfect for everyday wear and any occasion, the rope chain is a no-brainer. It is a versatile chain that can be layered with pendant necklaces or chains. It is a classic chain that will never go out of style and is ideal for those on a budget. 

If you are looking for the perfect statement piece chain, then the tennis chain is the one for you. This chain is one of the shiniest chains out there and is suitable for fancy and smart events to catch eyes wherever you go. If you have more money to invest in an expensive chain this is the ideal piece for you. 


Now that we’ve gone through the tennis chain vs rope chain discussion you should have a better understanding of both these unique chains. In conclusion, both the tennis chain and rope chain come with a variety of pros and cons as well as features and characteristics that set them apart. 

The tennis chain is the ultimate statement piece that will catch eyes whenever worn and add a sense of luxury to any outfit. The rope chain is a versatile piece that can be worn with most outfits, layered with other chains and used to hold pendants. 

You should now be able to make a more informed decision when deciding between these two styles of chains. Ultimately, the choice between the two will depend on your styling needs, preferences and budget. 

Looking for more information on the tennis chain? Check out our complete guide to tennis chains.

Was the rope chain more interesting to you? Have a look at our guide which covers everything you need to know about the rope chain!



Do Tennis Chains Break Easily?

The tennis chain can break easily. In general, the tennis chain has a rigid structure but twisted with enough force, can break the chain. 

Do Hollow Rope Chains Break Easily? 

Hollow rope chains tend to break much easier than solid rope chains. With a hollow rope chain, 

Hollow rope chains tend to break much easier than solid rope chains. With a hollow rope chain, the chances of the chain getting dented, stretched or snapped are much higher as it has a hollow centre. 

What Is The Most Comfortable Chain To Wear?

Most of the time the rope chain will be more comfortable to wear on a daily basis. It is much lighter on the neck than a tennis chain as it doesn’t feature any diamonds or gemstones. 

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