So, you’re ready to pop the question, but you’re not quite sure how to go about choosing an engagement ring. This is a big decision! Not only do you want to find a ring that your partner will love, but you also want to make sure it doesn’t break the bank. In this blog post, we’re going to run through some of the most important things that you might want to consider when looking for an engagement ring, as well as how to make the right choice for you. Let’s take a look.
Choosing the Right Engagement Ring
For many people, choosing an engagement ring is a daunting task. There are so many factors to consider, from the style of the ring to the size and quality of the diamond. However, with a little knowledge and planning, it is possible to find the perfect ring for your loved one.
One of the most important things to keep in mind is that an engagement ring is a symbol of your love and commitment. It should be a reflection of your relationship and your personal taste. With this in mind, it is important to take your time when shopping for an engagement ring.
Don’t be afraid to consult with friends and family members who have been through the process before. And remember, the most important thing is to choose a ring that you know your partner will love.
Getting to Know the Elusive Four Cs
When shopping for an engagement ring, you’ll often hear about the Four Cs. These are the four key factors that affect a diamond’s quality and price: carat weight, cut, color, and clarity. Here’s a quick rundown of each:
Carat weight is how a diamond is measured and is the size of the stone. The heavier the carat, the more expensive the diamond. However, two diamonds of equal carat weight can have very different prices depending on the other three Cs.
Cut refers to the angles and proportions of the diamond and how well it has been cut. A well-cut diamond will reflect light better and appear brighter than a poorly cut diamond. However, even with a perfect cut, some diamonds will still be darker than others due to their body color (more on that next).
Color is judged on a scale from D (no hue) to Z (a yellow hued diamond). Diamonds are often treated with chemicals or irradiation to improve their color, but these treatments can affect clarity (more on that in a minute). The less color in a diamond, the more rare and therefore more expensive it is.
Clarity is judged on a 6 point scale from IF (flawless) to I3 (heavily included). Flaws in diamonds are called inclusions and are usually tiny mineral crystals or cracks that formed while the diamond was being formed deep underground. Most inclusions cannot be seen by the naked eye, but they can be seen under magnification. The fewer and smaller the inclusions, the higher the clarity rating and the more expensive the diamond.
To Diamond or Not to Diamond
There’s no right or wrong answer when it comes to choosing a diamond engagement ring. It’s all about what you and your partner prefer. So maybe you’re wondering whether you want to go with a diamond or another style of gem? Diamonds can be quite expensive, but there are ways to save money.
You can talk to your jeweler about options like buying a stone that’s slightly less than one carat or choosing a ring with a smaller diamond surrounded by smaller accent stones. Don’t feel like you have to stick with tradition and get a diamond ring. There are lots of other beautiful options available, including gemstones like sapphires, rubies, and emeralds.
Budgeting for the Purchase
Next, you’re probably wondering how much you should spend on an engagement ring. The three months’ salary rule is often cited, but it’s not set in stone—literally or figuratively! You should spend what you feel comfortable spending and what fits within your budget. It’s also important to keep in mind that an engagement ring is just one part of the overall cost of getting married. According to The Knot’s 2018 Real Weddings Study, couples spent an average of $33,931 on their weddings last year. So if you’re planning on getting married soon, you might want to factor that into your budget as well!
Questions You Need to Ask Yourself
Choosing an engagement ring is a big decision. Not only is it a symbol of your love and commitment, but it’s also a major financial investment. The average cost of an engagement ring in the United States is $5,871, according to The Knot’s 2019 Jewelry and Engagement Study. This is the exact reason why you need to ask yourself some very important questions before you make a purchase. Let’s run through these now.
Do the Four Cs Matter to You?
When it comes to diamonds, the four Cs—cut, clarity, color, and carat weight—determine both the quality and the price of the stone. Of these four factors, carat weight has the biggest impact on price. So if you’re looking for a more affordable ring, choose a diamond with a smaller carat weight.
You can also save money by opting for a less than perfect clarity rating—most people can’t even tell the difference between a flawless diamond and one with minor blemishes anyway. And while you might be tempted to choose a colorless diamond to get the best value, keep in mind that diamonds with slight tints of yellow or brown actually tend to be less expensive.
Are You Focusing on the Setting?
It’s not just the diamond that determines the overall cost of an engagement ring—the setting matters too. A solitaire engagement ring will be more affordable than a ring with multiple diamonds or fancy embellishments. And speaking of embellishments, avoid rings with unnecessary extras like engravings or designer logos—these add-ons can drive up the price without adding any real value.
Have You Factored in Your Partner’s Needs?
You’ll also want to focus on your partners style and lifestyle too. Do they work with their hands? Do they play sports? If they lead an active lifestyle, you’ll want to choose a ring that can withstand a little wear and tear. A delicate, prong-set diamond might not be the best choice for someone who works with their hands or plays sports. Conversely, if you lead a more sedentary lifestyle, you might be able to get away with a more delicate ring.
Their taste also comes into play here. What kind of jewelry does your partner usually wear? Do they prefer simple or ornate styles? Do they prefer silver or gold? If you’re not sure, take a look at their current jewelry collection for some clues.
Don’t Be Afraid to Shop Around
When it comes to such a big purchase, it’s important to shop around and compare prices before making a final decision. With so many options available online, it’s easy to find an engagement ring that’s both beautiful and affordable. Just remember to do your research first and be sure to read customer reviews before making any final decisions.
Choosing an engagement ring can be daunting, but it doesn’t have to be! Keep these things in mind as you start your search and you’ll be sure to find a beautiful ring that your partner will love—without breaking the bank.