You're thinking of popping the question but the even bigger one looms over your head - how to choose an engagement ring! When you go on the market for a wedding ring, the choices are endless. There’s always a stone with better cuts, better clarity, and better color, and soon enough, you begin doubting yourself. It’s time to relax.
No matter what kind of engagement ring you are looking for, there are some things to keep in mind.
9 Useful Tips to Buy That ‘One Engagement Ring’
1. How Much Do I Spend
The first question people have when they’re learning how to buy a wedding ring is, “how much do I spend?” As with all good things in life, the higher your budget the better the quality of the product you purchase.
This translates into a quality stone or better metal in engagement rings.
How much you spend on an engagement ring is entirely up to you.
A general rule of thumb is three times your monthly salary. It is a huge investment but worth it for such an important occasion.
Always start by keeping a rough budget in mind. Know how much you are looking to spend and find the perfect ring within your budget. If you try to go for the best quality stone without the clarity of your budget, you’ll likely overspend.
2. Ring size
Be prepared. On the day of the proposal, you don’t want the ring you so carefully chose to not fit your partner. Always know the size of the finger the ring will go on.
Ring size is measured by the circumference of the ring. You can wrap a thread or piece of paper around their finger or you can discreetly take the size from another ring they wear.
Most rings can be resized up or down a size but make sure you choose your engagement ring well in advance so that the jeweler also has the opportunity to make adjustments.
The right ring might not be out there. As trends change, jewelers keep stock of only what sells. If you already know what you are looking for, then you might opt for a custom-made ring.
This gives you the freedom to select every aspect of your ring from carat and cut to its setting. If you do decide to customize your ring, make sure you’ve considered all your options.
You can also ask your jeweler to help you select styles and trends that will suit your partner’s personality.
4. Trust is key
Engagement rings are crazy expensive. The entire jewelry industry is based on trust and you must buy only from trusted retailers. If you aren’t careful, you could be sold a lower-quality stone or metal. A trusted jeweler will also guide you through the process of buying and help you select the right piece.
Make sure you receive a certificate of authenticity from a trusted organization at the time of purchase. In case you need to verify the stone’s worth, this certificate will help you prove the authenticity of the stone.
All Netcarat jewelry is EGL USA certified.
The essence of an engagement ring lies in its setting. It determines how your center stone is attached to the rest of the ring and can completely change its look and feel. The classic settings for diamond engagement rings are prong, bezel, pave, and halo. Each is classic and timeless in its own way.
The Prong Setting:
Solitaire engagement rings are sleek and naturally accent many outfits. Solitaire stones are naturally defined so they are rare and expensive. This setting is designed so the diamond captures light from almost all angles making it shine bright!
Carat matters in a solitaire setting as there are no supporting stones but if you have the budget, they are simply gorgeous!
This Exotic Cluster Ring from Netcarat is set using the Prong Setting. Entirely wrapped in diamonds, it’s the perfect choice for a sparkling piece!
The Pave Setting:
Derived from the French word meaning paving, this type of setting features several smaller stones that accent the larger one. It's a very luxurious setting and after all, who can say no to more diamonds?
The Bezel Setting:
This cut adds a ring of metal around the ring giving it the appearance of a larger stone. It helps balance the fire and makes for a fine, lustrous finish. If you are on a budget but still want an impressive ring, this is the setting for you.
The Halo Setting:
A halo setting is a method of securing the stone in a circle of other diamonds. This increases its brilliance, its fire and makes it appear larger than the main stone alone. A perfect choice that is both flashy and beautiful!
A gorgeous choice in the halo setting is this Halo Radiant Solitaire Ring in Yellow 10k Gold. It has flashes of gold that add a modern edge and a brilliant circle of diamonds.
6. Color, Cut, Clarity, and Carat
The 4Cs are important in that they determine the value of your diamond. The most exquisite diamonds are colorless and flawless but these are very rare and extremely expensive.
Depending on the personality of your partner, a small ring can be just as beautiful as a large one. The carat or weight of the ring only matters if you want it to. Most rings are between 1.25-1.50 carats.
Diamond color can also be compromised if you are in a squeeze. Diamonds with a grading of H and above appear almost colorless. With gradings below I, your diamond might appear slightly yellow but that could add a certain vintage appeal.
On the other hand, clarity and cut are both very important factors. Very Slightly Included diamond clarity (for all GIA-graded diamonds) is an acceptable standard for engagement rings. This ensures your stone doesn’t have blemishes visible to the naked eye.
As for diamond cuts (their shape), many are available but the most common cuts include the quintessential round brilliant, pear, oval, princess, and cushion cut. While these are popular and timeless you don’t have to limit your options.
7. Know the trends but choose something timeless
An engagement ring can be a fashion statement but it is so much more than that. It's a timeless resemblance of your love. If you are asking yourself how to choose an engagement ring, our best advice would be to select something that goes with the trends you like but will remain classic for all time. This is particularly important because your partner will wear their engagement rings forever so it should be forever relevant.
There are many great styles in engagement rings: modern, bohemian, vintage, etc. Similar to how thrifting has taken over the fashion world, vintage designs are making a comeback in engagement rings. You can take a vintage style you like and rejuvenate it with an updated element that gives it a sleek, chic, and classic look. Trends continue to arise (Carrie Bradshaw adorned an Ascher cut on Sex in the City for a brief period making the diamond cut go viral for a minute) but ultimately it boils down to your choice.
Another trend this year has seen is the gemstone engagement ring. If you go with a vibrant-colored gemstone, you can opt for a setting or cut that gives it a sparkling appeal.
One of our choice pieces is the Exquisite Pear Ring in White 10k Gold from Netcarat. It's classic with a fancy twist and bursting with diamond sparkles!
8. Be Unique
Your engagement or wedding ring is a very personal symbol of affection and love. It should represent you and your partner.
Most of it comes down to choice, and if you aren’t liking traditional styles feel free to experiment. Unique gemstone engagement rings are always trending, and it's a great way to memorialize your special bond.
Ask your jeweler to find unconventional stones and pair them with settings of your choice. To paraphrase Coco Chanel, “To be irreplaceable, it must be different”!