How Much Should I Spend?
This is an emotional event, and a purchase that will last a lifetime. The two-months salary convention is a common starting point, but we believe that regardless of the amount you budget, your most important considerations should be quality and value.
Choose The Ring
She is going to wear this ring for the rest of her life, so you want to ensure she likes it. Whether you want your proposal to be a surprise, or you want her to be involved in the decision, here are the decisions you'll need to make:
If you're unsure what ring metal to choose, consider the differences between 18k gold and platinum:
18K Gold is classic and the most common for engagment ring settings. It is less expensive. 18k gold is composed of 75% gold and 25% metal alloys to give it strength. It is easy to polish and repair
Platinum is more expensive since it is rarer than gold. It is the strongest metal and will last a lifetime. It is difficult to polish or repair.
There are many setting styles to choose from here are a few:
Solitare - Single stone
Settings with Sidestones - A setting additional diamonds or gemstones adds additional sparkle or color.
Settings with Matching Band - If she plans to wear her engagement and wedding ring together a setting with matching band might be considered.
How do you know if she'll like the ring if she doesn't pick it out? If you consider her tastes and lifestyle, you'll be sure to make the right choice.
1. Take a good look at the color of jewelry your partner wears. What color is the metal?
2. Ask her friends or mother if she has mentioned a preference for a particular type or style of ring.
3. Is she very active or not used to wearing jewelry? If so, consider a cathedral or contour setting, which will protect a diamond from rough treatment.
Engagements are rarely an out-of-the-blue surprise, so it is common to discuss engagement ring choices with your partner. The only way to ensure you find a ring that will match her taste and style is to shop for a ring together. Whether you're shopping together or not, start by finding her ring size.
Ask you partner's mother or one of her friends if they know her finger size.
Borrow one of your partner's rings and take it to your jeweler to find out her size.
Choosing the Diamond
An engagement diamond may be the biggest purchase you've ever made. And with the right information, you'll be able to spend your budget on the diamond qualities that are most important to you.
To start, find out what shape she likes. Popular diamond shapes include round, oval, princess-cut, emerald-cut, Asscher-cut, marquise-cut, radiant-cut, pear-shaped, and heart-shaped diamonds. The majority of diamond engagement rings today are set with a round diamond. And most of the remaining rings are set with princess-cut diamonds.
You'll find a wide range of diamond sizes is available within a given budget. Next, you'll narrow this range when you decide on the quality of your diamond.
The cut of a diamond has the biggest affect on its sparkle, also called brilliance. Even with perfect color and clarity, a poor cut can make a diamond look dull.
Colorless diamonds are most highly valued and are priced accordingly. For the best value, choose a colorless or near-colorless diamond that has no noticeable color, grades D-J.
Diamonds free from internal flaws, or inclusions, are very rare and highly-valued. The best value in diamond clarity is a diamond with no inclusions visible to the unaided eye.
Since larger diamonds are more rare than smaller diamonds, diamond value rises exponentially with carat weight. With a clear understanding of cut, color, and clarity, you can balance the overall diamond quality with the size of your diamond.
Choosing a Jeweler
Beyond price, variety, and expertise, there are additional services and guarantees you should expect from a jeweler when making a purchase this important:
The finest diamonds come accompanied by a diamond certificate (also called a diamond grading report) from an unbiased third-party. This diamond grading report is your only guarantee of the quality of your diamond's cut.
If you receive a ring appraisal, you can send it to your insurance company to establish coverage, and it will help ensure that in the case of loss, theft, or damage your insurance company will give you an equal replacement.
Look for the security of a no-questions-asked return policy. When you're making this large a purchase, you'll want to make sure that you'll be able to return the ring if you want to or need to for some reason.