Learn how to choose guitar strings: the right ones for you! Guitar strings are the lifeblood of a guitar. They are normally made of hard metal and come in various thicknesses. You’ll notice that they are around 3-4 feet long and have a small ball on the end of each string. You can purchase them with or without a coating. A coating is a protective layer of material adhered to the metal on the string and increases string longevity. As you touch your strings your fingers leave an acid residue which builds up over time. That residue causes the strings to become dull. You can actually feel the string itself and tell that it has built up too much residue. That means it’s time to change strings. Depending on how often you play, it could mean you need to change your strings each month or as little as every six months. I recommend not letting your strings go longer than six months.
I suggest purchasing a set of light strings. Light refers to the thickness of the string. Typically that means your highest string 1 [e] will have a gauge of .10 – .12 mm. Light strings are easier to push down on the fretboard than medium strings, but not as easy as super light strings. For beginners, in my opinion, they are just the right size.
While there may seem to be about 100 brands and styles, simply choose a package or two of strings that meet your budget. A normal package of professional, non-coated acoustic guitar strings should cost around $6. Coated strings, which may last longer, should cost $10-$13. I use coated strings because I play so often. For your first sets of strings, you may consider buying regular strings and then upgrading as you get better; especially as you play more often.