Next to a house and a vehicle, an engagement ring is likely one of the biggest purchases a man can make. It’s only logical you would like to be sure you have the perfect ring to propose with. Our engagement ring buying guide has everything you need to know to pick the perfect engagement ring for your special someone.
What to Know Before You Head to the Store to Make an Engagement Ring Purchase
One of the first things to consider when buying an engagement ring is if your partner has given you any hints. If they’ve shown you pictures of rings they love, or have a Pinterest board create, that’s a good place to begin. Focus on any comments they drop about celebrities’ or friends’ engagement rings too. Also you can have a peek at their current jewelry collection to have a sense of what stones, metals, and styles they currently wear, which will make it simpler to narrow down your alternatives once you’re in the store.
So, when you have an idea of one’s partner’s style, the amount of should you spend on an engagement ring? Because the old adage that you can spend 2-3 months salary was actually an inspired marketing campaign in the 1930s, the math doesn’t endure.
While it’s essential you don’t browse the store devoid of a budget, just how much you might spend boils right down to how much you’ll be able to afford ultimately. After all, it’s the sentiment and commitment that goes alongside the ring and the proposal that matters probably the most – not just how much you may spend on the ring itself. Actually, some experts would argue that it is financially reckless to get into debt for this type of purchase. Wouldn’t you rather spend just a little extra on the ceremony or your honeymoon anyways?
A knowledgeable jeweler is a wonderful resource with regards to your allowance,” says Katherine Bodoh, RJ, CEO of the American Gem AGS and Society Laboratories Inform them the price range in store, and they can demonstrate options which could fit your budget.”
Based on the Knot 2018 Real Weddings Study , the average cost of an engagement ring is around $5,680, down slightly from the year prior. That’s a real investment, so it’s important to get the most bang for your buck.
You should also try to find out your partner’s ring size before heading to the jeweler, if possible. One way to do that is to bring among their rings with one to the store. You may even size your own fingers and compare them to your partners in order to get an approximate size. Finally, if neither of those are an option, you can always just go with the law of averages. The Swiss Gemological Laboratory notes that the average adult woman’s ring size is between 5 and 7, while the average adult man’s ring size is between 9 and 11.
Important Engagement Ring Factors
The most crucial factors when choosing a diamond engagement ring are known as the 4Cs. The 4Cs stand for cut, color, clarity, and carat weight, and they are the primary characteristics that define a diamond’s quality.
Cut: Of all the 4Cs, cut has the greatest effect on a diamond’s beauty, says Bodoh. In determining the standard of the cut, the diamond grader evaluates the cutter’s skill in the fashioning of the diamond. The more precise the cut, the more captivating the diamond is to the eye.” She emphasizes that a well-cut stone provides more than enough sparkle on your beloved’s hand.
Color: The color of gem-quality diamonds occurs in many hues says Bodoh, who notes that diamonds typically range from colorless to light yellow or light brown. She adds that other natural colors such as blue, red, or pink are known as “fancy,” and their color grading is different from colorless diamonds.
Clarity: Diamonds can have internal characteristics referred to as inclusions or external characteristics referred to as blemishes,” says Bodoh. Diamonds without inclusions or blemishes are rare, & most can only be observed with magnification.” Understand that diamonds without visible inclusions tend to be expensive. Bodoh says some imperfections” could be hidden with a strategic mount.
Carat Weight: Finally, the carat may be the diamond’s physical weight measured in metric carats. Bodoh explains that certain carat equals 1/5 gram and is subdivided into 100 points. In relation to carat weight, Bodoh has a tip for those who have budget considerations: go for slightly less than the nearest carat. A90 carat diamond will save you money over a one carat diamond. A slightly smaller well-cut diamond can actually appear larger than a larger diamond with a lesser cut. Cut really is key to a diamond’s beauty.”
Bodoh’s formula for how to buy an engagement ring is simple. Sparkle + Brightness + Contrast = Overall beauty.
These are qualities it is possible to ask your jeweler to go over, so you have an improved understanding of why is a specific diamond so beautiful.”
Choosing Precious Metal
In relation to engagement rings, white platinum and gold are some of the most used options, a Maison Birks Bridal Expert told AskMen. Both are great, but each have unique disadvantages and advantages.
Platinum carries a higher price point because it is rarer than gold. It really is more expensive due to its high density and durability also, that makes it significantly less prone to scratches,” said the expert. Gold, alternatively, is really a soft metal really. To produce a secure band, gold ought to be blended with other alloys and metals. Therefore less of the platinum has been additional and used brings down the price. White gold doesn’t exist in the natural world therefore, unlike platinum, these bands ought to be re-plated after a while to help keep their color. Also, recognize that while both these metals might look similar, white gold carries a shiny silver finish, whereas platinum has more of a grey undertone.”
For those with an antique sense of style, either option works, nevertheless the Maison Birks Bridal Expert says they’ve also seen an evergrowing desire for yellow and rose gold modern times.
Think about the plain things your companion wears on a day-to-day basis. Usually an individual may have a preference, which can help in terms of choosing an ideal metal for an gemstone.”
Bodoh says that something to bear in mind is that the colour of the metal surrounding the diamond (in the event that’s your stone of preference) make a difference how it looks.
If you prefer a colorless diamond, a gold ring can create an impact which makes the diamond produce a yellow hue.”
Engagement Ring Shapes
After metal, the form of the stones in a ring is one more thing to take into account when buying an gemstone.
The Maison Birks Bridal Expert says that while ring shapes are always changing in popularity, trends tend to be tied to the planet of celebrity.
Meghan Markle’s three-stone gemstone brought a resurgence of fascination with the style. Some other standouts include the emerald cut, which gives a prism-like effect, and the infinity band, which loops around the finger and frames the diamond beautifully.”
When selecting a ring shape and setting for your partner, think about their personal style. Do they stick to more traditional and classic pieces or are they more quirky and trendy?
Of the day At the conclusion, round continues to be our number one shape and a great option for anyone. You may also make a classic shape more unique by altering the setting.” For example, the company offers a North Star” ring which features
an uncommon five-prong setting that
creates a lovely star-like effect round the diamond.
Engagement Ring Gemstones
In terms of choosing a gemstone for the partner’s gemstone, Bodoh recommends the ones that speak to a couple of and their relationship. She says you need to select a gemstone that’s at the very least a nine on the Mohs’ Scale of Mineral Hardness , which determines the durability of gemstones and minerals.
Diamonds certainly are a 10 on the Mohs’ scale, making them one of many hardest & most durable choices,” says Bodoh. Other great choices are rubies and sapphires.”
Bodoh notes that the price tag on a gemstone depends upon numerous factors.
In a diamond, it is advisable to consider the cut, color, and clarity factors. The size matters somewhat less using the quality of the characteristics. The bigger the cut, color, or clarity grade, the more costly the diamond will be. These factors could be traded off to fit your budget and what’s vital that you you,” she says. With colored gems, the caliber of the color may be the most determining element in price, alongside considerations of relative rarity, country of origin, and standard grading factors such as for example cut, clarity, and carat weight.”
Whatever stone(s) you find yourself with, Bodoh says shoppers should ask to see diamonds that include a grading report from the reputable diamond-grading lab to guarantee the quality of the stone. And, it’s important to see and touch the jewelry in person, to be able to try it on and look at it in different lighting conditions to see how it sparkles.
There’s a personalized level of customer service that you get from a credentialed professional jeweler that you cannot get online.”
Engagement Ring Settings
Once you’ve chosen your stone and metal, consider how the stone is set” onto the ring.
Prong: Prongs are the most common setting, and work with a small metal claw to carry the gemstone set up securely. Prongs could be rounded, flat, pointed, v‐shaped, or heart‐shaped even, & most stones shall have either three, four or six prongs holding them set up. Understand that the more prongs the better the stone is, though it can be done to see less of it.
Tiffany: A particular sixГўВЂВђprong solitaire setting created by Tiffany & Co. in 1886, this setting maximizes a diamond’s sparkle.
Bezel: A bezel setting holds the diamond or gemstone set up with a tailor made thin metal rim or frame, and will be full (surrounding the stone completely) or partial (leaving the sides open).
Composite: A composite setting is an excellent way to obtain the appearance of a more substantial stone, without blowing your allowance completely. It arranges several smaller diamonds for the looks of 1 larger stone together, and may also be called a cluster setting also.
Tension: Tension settings make use of the tension of the ring’s band to transport the stone create, giving the looks that the stone is floating.
Channel: A channel-set ring features small grooves, or channels, where diamonds or other gemstones are slid into, before being sealed in securely.
Bar: The bar setting is related to the channel setting, however, the stones are closed in on two sides just, of all around instead.
Pavé: The pavé setting uses multiple small diamonds set closely together for a carpet‐like effect over the band.
Halo: The halo setting is an excellent way to enhance the appearance of a substandard diamond, since it identifies the keeping tiny gemstones around a far more substantial center stone to generate it appear larger.
Cathedral: A cathedral setting uses arches of metal to transport the stones above the shank (band) to create them appear larger.
Buying Custom
The Maison Birks Bridal Expert says you can find a misconception across the expressed word custom, with people assuming custom = expensive automatically, but that’s not always the case! While they could not become more expensive, they do take additional time.
Custom rings may take a lot longer and it’s really vital that you give yourself an effective timeline,” they said. Be certain that the jeweler you select is patient and in tune together with your vision and needs.”
They say that you ought to bring inspiration images along to your consultation to help make the procedure for designing a custom gemstone smoother, and be available to the creative process that originates from collaborating with a jeweler.
You might go in thinking you understand exactly what you need and be amazed by something new.”
Developing a custom ring does take longer and requires more involvement, but permits you to give your personal someone something one-of-a-kind.
You have to be OK with not getting to see, touch or feel the ring until it’s completely finished. But having the ability to create something completely one-of-a-kind is a fantastic opportunity.”
Buying an Antique Engagement Ring
It’s important that you speak with a professional if you are considering buying an old-fashioned engagement ring, as you can get duped.
Avoid being fooled by what ‘Art Deco Style’ if you are on the search for an ‘Art Deco’ ring,” says the Maison Birks Bridal Expert. There are lots of re-creations out and costume jewelry parading because the real thing there.”
It is stated by them is crucial to do your quest when buying an old-fashioned ring.
There are lots of stores out with fantastic reputations for finding incredible vintage rings there. Just ensure that once you do find an antique ring, you get it verified with a gemologist if it’s missing papers of authentication”
Giving Your Partner an Engagement Ring That’s a Family Heirloom
Alternatively, modernizing an heirloom piece is also an option. Birks Concierge provides a service where its experts will work with jewelers to re-imagine a precious heirloom. Other stores may provide this service as well, so inquire if you need to keep a special stone or ring in the family.
While no one likes to believe their marriage won’t workout, if the heirloom is essential to you and you also don’t want your lover to have it in case of a split, make certain both parties sign a contract stating therefore before the big day.
Engagement Rings for Same-Sex Partners
If you’re a guy investing in a ring for a male partner, you’re in luck! Over time, more diverse options have grown to be available.
Some couples elect to wear matching engagement rings, while some choose different rings. In a few partnerships only 1 1 person wears the gemstone – there is really no solid etiquette for same-sex engagement rings.
This is also a location where in fact the Maison Birks Bridal Excerpt says a custom ring is a superb choice.
Having the freedom to generate something represents your relationship lets you create something special truly.”
How exactly to Protect Your GEMSTONE Investment exactly
Bodoh says the best solution to protect your gemstone is always to insure it.
First, get an appraisal from the Certified GemologistВ® Appraiser or an unbiased Certified GemologistВ® Appraiser. Jewelers Mutual Insurance Group offers personal plans for jewelry buyers,” she says. It’s very easy. You shall get insurance in minutes.”
She notes that care differs for colored gemstones vs also. diamonds.
Be sure you take the ring to your jeweler every 2 yrs for inspections and repairs back, such as for example prong retipping. If needed, obtain the advice of a credentialed jeweler regarding maintenance and care, and make certain the piece is reappraised every 2 yrs.”
Also Consider…
Depending on where you get your engagement ring, the retailer may offer additional services such as for example free cleaning, resizing, or special warranties. That applies to custom pieces too! Some retailers, like Maison Birks, Peoples, or Jared offer diamond trade-up programs, to upgrade your significant other’s ring at the entire value of the initial purchase price.

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