There are 4 main things to consider when shopping for an engagement ring:
- Your budget. Yes it’s important that she loves the ring. But it’s also important that your wallet loves it too. Simply put, you should only buy what you can reasonably afford. Remember, this is the first major purchase of your new lives together, and you don’t want to start it off by being in debt. Read:
- Her personal taste. She’s going to wear this ring for the rest of her life. So it should be something that matches her style. Think about: what kind of clothes does she usually wear? Does she like to stick to tradition? Or does she like to make a statement? Does she even want a diamond?When choosing a diamond (or gemstone) that matches her taste, there are two major factors:
- Shape. Not all women want a round solitaire. If she wants something just on the edge of tradition, she may like cushion or oval. If she has vintage tastes, consider emerald or asscher. And if she loves being the center of attention, pear or marquise will definitely stand out. And a plus – fancy shaped diamonds can be 20-40% cheaper than round.
- Setting. This is the style of the band. First, decide on the metal color. Does she want a gold or silver tone? Or maybe a romantic rose gold? Does she want something simple and understated or more flashy? You can also use settings to your advantage. For example, a halo adds extra bling and will make the center diamond appear larger.
Tip: If your girl doesn’t normally wear jewelry, you may have to ask her what style she likes. The downside to this is that a surprise proposal may be out of the question.Another thing to think of is whether the ring will match her fingers/hand. If she’s got the perfect long slender fingers, then your job is easy… almost anything will look nice. So what about those with other hand types?
If she’s got chubbier fingers, a bold statement ring will suit her well. A thicker band will minimize the appearance of wider fingers. A larger center design such as halos and angular shapes will also look more flattering.
If she has the opposite (small hands and fingers), then simpler rings with thin bands won’t overpower them. Elongated diamonds, like the oval or marquise, will help short thin fingers appear longer. Also, diamonds with smaller carat weights will look better proportionally.
- Her Lifestyle. This actually has a huge impact. If your girl is very active, a high-set ring that’s always getting caught on stuff will become super annoying. If she works with children, a ring with sharp corners won’t be ideal. If she has a high-power career, it may be more important to wear something flashier. Think about her work and hobbies and what kind of ring will best suit that. Tip: You’ll have to take special consideration if you girl is a nurse or doctor. Because of the nature of their job, some hospitals may not even allow rings at work. If she is able to wear one, it’s important that the ring won’t get caught on stuff or scratch others. A bezel setting is best, as it has a smooth rim of metal around the diamond for protection. Also look for a low setting, or even flush with the band. Tension settings are also great choices for nurses or those who work with children.
- The 4C’s. After you have an idea of what kind of ring she’ll like, it’s time to pick the actual diamond. Take your time to learn about the 4C’s The trick is to find a balance of the 4C’s so that the diamond appears brilliant, colorless, and flawless.
- Carat. Most people prioritize the size of the diamond. After all, this is the thing that admirers see first. A lot of people also equate carat weight with love and affection. We do agree that carat is important, but it shouldn’t be your top priority. Related:
- Cut. Instead, focus on getting the best cut possible. Cut (proportion, symmetry, and polish) is the single most important factor that determines how sparkly a diamond is. A well-cut diamond can be so sparkly that it hides flaws and masks color. Related:
- Color. Most white (colorless) diamonds will have a yellow tint. Completely colorless stones are super rare and thus priced at a premium. Do you enjoy an icy white look to your jewelry or prefer warmer hues? Remember, the normal eye will not be able to detect slight hints of yellow. Related:
- Clarity. This is the least important factor to consider because most flaws are too small to be seen with the naked eye. All you need is to find a diamond that is eye-clean. This is also why cut is so important, because a sparkly diamond can hide many flaws.