Picking the perfect engagement ring is a momentous, often stressful occasion. Take some of the uncertainty out of the process and read our guide to discover what qualities and features everyone should look for in an engagement ring.
You're ready to spend the rest of your life with your amazing girlfriend. So you set out to buy a ring, only to realize you don't know the first thing about jewelry.
Many guys these days will bypass the ignorance and pick out the ring with their brides-to-be. But that's lame! Most women love romantic surprises, and there's no better surprise than popping the question (thanks Hollywood).
By picking out the ring without her, she'll love how thoughtful you were in picking out the perfect ring.
To find the best ring to make your woman feel loved and special, you'll need to get educated. But don't worry! You have us, and the internet, to help. We'll make finding the perfect engagement ring simple.
So what's the first step?
Establish Your Budget
Trust me, don't start your marriage in debt because you're still making payments on that engagement ring.
The general rule for buying a ring is to save up two to three months salary. But there are so many beautiful rings that won't break your bank.
Rings can cost anywhere from $150 to the millions of dollars. In some ways, you and your fiance will get what you paid for. That's why it's important for you to do research on prices before you even get started.
Talk to a reputable jeweler about your budget. They should be able to work with you.
Find out Her Style
Ring style is as personal as clothing style, so you'll want to make sure you find something that fits her personality.
Start paying attention to what she wears. Is her style classic? Artistic? Bold and fierce? Super feminine? All these clues can lead to finding the perfect engagement ring.
Keep her lifestyle in mind. If she works at a job that requires putting her hands in narrow spaces, a ring with big gemstones might not be a good idea. This is important advice if your fiance works in the armed forces or as a police officer.
Talk to friends and family about what she'd like. But be wary! Some of the people you talk to might give you advice about the rings THEY would want, not what your fiance wants. Use your discretion when you ask for advice.
If you're lucky, someone in the family might have an heirloom ring. If it's a style she'd like, you'll have a meaningful ring that you didn't have to spend a lot of money on.
Pick Out a Gemstone
Now is the time to find out if your future fiancee is a classic diamond girl. Despite what the marketing tells you, not everyone is wowed by diamonds.
Your girlfriend might like the look of a diamond but isn't impressed by the price or the ethical problems in the industry. Then moissanite rings are a perfect alternative. Moissanite stones are also known as lab-grown diamonds.
They look like a diamond, sparkle just as well, and are much cheaper than the traditional diamond engagement ring.
Your fiance might also like other gemstones like ruby, amethyst, pearls, or emeralds. If she doesn't like diamonds, pick a gemstone that matches her wardrobe or is her favorite color.
Learn the Four C's
No engagement ring guide would be complete without talking about the Four C's.
This is the term we're most familiar with because it tells us one thing: how big is that rock?
The carat actually refers to the weight of the diamond. The heavier it is, the more money it's going to be. If you're wanting to save some money, consider shaving off a few carats. A 2 carat diamond is more expensive than a 1.8 carat diamond, but it's only a little bigger.
The cut of the diamond refers to its shape. You can go with the ideal cut, a fine cut, the shallow cut, or the deep cut. The cut will have a lot to do with how well the stone sparkles.
This refers to any impurities in the diamond. The clearer the diamond is, the better. But a "perfect diamond" with zero impurities is very rare, so don't set your sights too high.
The color of a diamond is pretty self-explanatory. Most diamonds are white, but a few can be yellow or brown. The more color it has, the more common it is (unless it's a red or green diamond).
Research Different Settings
A ring setting refers to the way the gemstone sits in the ring. Most stones are set in prongs in the ring, little "claws" that keep the ring in place. You won't have to worry too much about prongs unless you get a heart, diamond, or marquise shaped diamond. In that case, make sure you get a V-shaped prong to protect the sharp ends of the stone.
Other settings include Tension settings, Bezel, Channel, Bar, and Pave settings.
When you're picking out an engagement ring setting, you might think about getting a set of rings. This way you'll know your fiancee's engagement ring will match the wedding ring, which often looks better.
Different Metals Make a Difference
The metal you choose for your engagement ring will depend on your fiancee's taste, but there are some standards.
Yellow gold rings were popular for generations, but lately, it's given way to white gold. If you want a resilient metal, platinum is one of the strongest rings on the market. Of course, there is always silver as an option.
See what color metal your fiancee wears now. If she wears more silver looking jewelry, then white gold, silver, and platinum are good choices.
Choose the Shape of the Stone
The last part of picking an engagement is to think about the stone shape.
Round and oval diamonds are classic. Princess cuts are square and are very popular. You can even get a heart shaped stone for your loved one.
Talk to your jeweler about your options, and pick the one you think your fiancee will like best.
Feeling Good About Finding the Perfect Engagement Ring?
Now that you've done your research, finding the perfect engagement ring should be a piece of cake. Click here for some great moissanite options in many different cuts and styles.
You've worked so hard to find the perfect engagement ring, so we know your fiancee is going to love it.