For many, the most stressful part about planning a wedding proposal is choosing the engagement ring. You may have your friends or family to help you pick the perfect location, time, and setting when proposing to your partner. But when buying an engagement ring, you’re mostly on your own. After all, no one knows your soon-to-be fiancée better than you. Furthermore, there are also several factors you need to consider, like the diamond’s size, shape, colour, design, and the metal for the ring’s setting. With so many considerations to remember, it’s no wonder many people quickly feel overwhelmed during the ring shopping.
Thankfully, buying an engagement ring doesn’t always have to be stressful and a hassle. With the right rules in mind and the proper approach, you can pick an engagement ring that your partner will surely cherish for many years. Instead of relying on “inspirational” ideas or pictures, this article will provide you with practical and actionable tips that will help ease the process of your engagement ring shopping. Remember, your engagement ring will serve as the symbol of devotion, commitment, and promise of marriage to your partner.
For your guide, here are eight practical rules you should live by when buying an engagement ring.
1. Set a clear shopping budget
You’ve probably heard the rule that says you should set aside your three months’ salary for the engagement ring. Or perhaps you’ve seen some price guides showing highly expensive price estimates of how much the “perfect” engagement ring should cost. But the truth is, you don’t have to follow these outdated rules as these are only gimmicks made by jewellery sellers and marketers to entice customers to settle on a price they can barely afford.
When setting a clear budget, you need to look at your current financial situation and see how much you can spend. You may also click here to give yourself an idea of how much most engagement rings generally cost, and that way, you can financially prepare yourself.
Remember that getting married is only the beginning as living together can also be a costly journey. If you don’t want to enter married life with debt, only spend as much as you can afford. After all, the perfect engagement ring isn’t based on how much it costs but on how it perfectly represents your love.
2. Take note of your partner’s style or taste
Now that you have a budget, you need to consider your partner’s style and taste. Knowing what your partner loves or wears often will guide you once you start checking out multiple jewellery stores. Those “inspirational” engagement ring pictures you see on the internet may look stylish and visually appealing. However, if neither of them fits your partner’s style or taste, there’s a chance that they won’t like the ring once they wear it on their finger.
To help you get a clue about your partner’s style and taste, check their jewellery box and study their jewellery pieces carefully. Do they like pieces made from yellow gold or rose gold? Or perhaps they are into eye-catching, sparkly diamonds. Or maybe they prefer simple and minimalist designs.
If your partner loves anything modern, perhaps she’d love the current engagement ring trends and isn’t shy to wear a statement engagement ring. Consulting with your partner’s friends and family can help you too. Maybe your partner has shared with them their preferences in terms of jewellery.
3. Decide on the diamond shape
Knowing your partner’s style or taste is essential since this insight will help you once you start choosing the shape of the ring’s diamond. When selecting the diamond’s shape, you should primarily consider the wearer’s personal preference. Perhaps your partner likes heart-shaped diamonds, oval styles, or pear-shaped ones. If your partner wants something more classic, you may choose a round solitaire diamond.
Meanwhile, if you want a shape that makes the diamond look larger, you can go for the emerald cut and marquise cut diamond. These shapes make the diamond appear larger even with the same carat weight as the others.
4. Familiarize the four C’s
When buying an engagement ring, familiarize yourself with the four C’s (colour, carat, cut, and clarity). These factors determine the beauty and quality of each diamond and can significantly influence your buying decision.
- Colour: The purest and structurally perfect diamond is colourless, almost like a drop of clear water, and with a higher value. The grading system of diamond colours starts from D to Z, with D as the highest value in terms of quality and price. If you want a diamond close to D but with a lower cost, you may opt for diamond colours ranging from G to I. If you’re unsure, don’t hesitate to consult a professional jewellery specialist to help you evaluate the best diamond colour for your ring.
- Carat: This factor measures the weight of the diamond. Larger diamonds with bigger weights are rarer and more beautiful than smaller ones. However, the bigger the carat weight, the costlier it’ll be. So, opt for the carat weight that suits your budget.
- Cut: The diamond cut shows how well the diamond can sparkle and interact with light and is often considered the most critical factor in determining the diamond’s beauty and value. However, it’s also the most complex to analyse. Preferably, consult a professional jeweller to help you find the best cut for your diamond engagement ring.
- Clarity: This refers to the visibility and absence of blemishes and inclusions of the diamond. Like the colour scale, clarity also has a grading system starting from FL (Flawless), VVS (Very, very slightly included), to SL (slightly included), and I (Included).
Ultimately, it’s hard to determine these factors, especially if you’re new to diamond shopping. Thus, don’t hesitate to seek assistance from a diamond jeweller specialist to facilitate you throughout the buying process.
5. Choose the metal and setting that complements your partner’s style
The setting metal is often classified into four main categories: yellow gold, white gold, rose gold, and platinum. When picking the metal, ensure you opt for the one that reflects your partner’s style or taste. Generally, most people prefer white gold due to its popularity. Plus, white gold requires less maintenance and is less expensive than the other choices. Ultimately, the metal is a personal choice.
For the ring’s setting, make sure you match it with your partner’s personality or lifestyle. For instance, if your partner’s job involves lots of hands-on activities, consider getting them a flush setting, tension setting, or bezel setting so the diamond won’t stick out and be on the way, like the prong setting.
6. Check multiple jewellery stores and make comparisons
With stress aside, buying an engagement ring can also be an exciting and fun experience. However, don’t let your emotions get you by buying the first ring you find at the first jewellery store you checked. Give yourself a couple of weeks or months to check multiple jewellery stores and compare their products. Give yourself enough time to narrow down your options and find a jewellery store that can provide the best engagement ring for you within your budget. Additionally, don’t forget to read customer reviews to gain insight into their credibility and customer satisfaction rate.
7. Ensure to get the perfect ring size the first time
While you may have nailed down the best diamond shape, design, and setting for the ring, many people often mess up getting the correct ring size for their partner. Unfortunately, a ring that’s too loose or too tight for the wearer could take a toll on the excitement surrounding the proposal. The wrong ring size also means you’ll need to resize it, which can take a few weeks. So, try to get your partner’s ring size by using one of their rings from their jewellery box or asking their friends to get her size for you.
8. Personalize the ring for extra sentiment
A touch of personalization can make your engagement ring extra special. For instance, you may have the ring engraved with your anniversary date, the initials of both your names or a short and sweet quote that means a lot to both of you.
With these practical rules in mind, you can achieve a stress-free and hassle-free engagement ring shopping process. So, if a marriage proposal is in the near future, remember these tips to help you get the best engagement ring for your beloved partner.