If you are planning to propose anytime soon, you will undoubtedly be interested in learning how to choose the perfect engagement ring. There are many important factors that you will have to consider, but that shouldn’t stop you from going ahead with your plan if you are really excited about it. Just take enough time to understand the taste and style of your woman as far as jewellery preferences are concerned, so that she will hopefully like the engagement ring you buy. Understanding everything about this type of jewellery is critical to avoid spending too much on something that isn’t worth the value you expect. Give her that sweet gift that she'll remeber for years to come.
Set your budget
Considering the size of your budget is extremely important so that you can focus on getting the best value you can afford. If your budget is large enough, then you will definitely have more freedom of choice for the piece of jewelry you are looking for. That is not to say that you can’t find the perfect engagement ring with a small budget. Most jewelry stores will provide a wide range of choices so it shouldn’t be that difficult to get a reasonably priced ring. Designer engagement rings made of high grade precious metals will definitely be pricey, but a combination of certain metals and other factors can significant bring the prices down. As you set your budget, you must have an idea of what the preferences of your woman are based the current jewelry she wears.
The band metal options
The choice of metals for the band come in variety, but the two most popular choices include platinum and gold. If you are more inclined to durability and purity of the metal, go for the platinum choice. White gold is very popular as well, but the metal also comes in more colors including yellow, rose, and green to suit different tastes and styles. If you think a deeper gray than that of platinum will still appeal, go for palladium. Bands made of recycled metals, often combining both platinum and gold may also offer a great alternative.
Gemstone shape and setting
Diamond shapes often make the most popular choices for most engagement rings, but sometimes other gemstones may be preferred especially for lower budget considerations. The bigger the gemstone or the “rock” as it’s often called, the better for most people, but personal tastes should always be considered. Diamonds are cut into a variety of shapes including the most popular one known as the round brilliant cut. Fancy cuts like the princess cut, oval cut, emerald cut and the baguette cut among others also make popular shapes. The setting of the ring (the piece that holds the stone in place) is often made of platinum or gold metal. A bezel setting works best for a classic engagement ring with a round cut diamond shape. The setting can also be pronged into four-prong or even a safer six-prong setting ideal for more active people. The right combination of setting and shape is key for the right appearance.
Know the 4Cs
For diamond engagement rings, you have to understand the 4Cs (carat, clarity, cut and color). These determine not only then beauty but also the value and rarity of the diamond. The considerations here are a bit technical, but you can’t ignore them if you are looking for the best quality and brilliance of the diamond ring. These will be clearly indicated in a GIA document that a certified jewelry store like Whiteflash should be able to provide to you. Others stores may be accredited by the Jewelers of America, but they should also provide relevant document containing the technical details.
- Carat refers to the weight and not the size of the diamond. 1 carat is more common for engagement rings, but you may also go for 1/2 or ¼ carat if on a tight budget.
- Clarity is a perfection scale indicating the number of inclusions naturally expected to be found in the stone. Diamond isn’t naturally flawless so its clarity also determines true value.
- The cut of the diamond determines its shape and brilliance. For the best sparkle, go for the round cut, also known as the brilliant cut.
- The color of the diamond ranges from colorless to light yellow. True colorless diamonds are treasured the most for rarity, but colored diamonds are also becoming popular with some modern fashion trends.
Study her style secretly
Getting the right style of an engagement ring can be a bit of a challenge because you must really find out what the lady you want to propose to likes. Find out if she fancies classic, vintage, glamorous, minimalist or a contemporary style. Take a bit of some time to study her current pieces of jewelry. This is important especially if you don’t want her to get the slightest clue that you are planning to propose to her. Most people like to make a surprise so that when they finally go down on one knee it’s more romantic. Three stone diamond rings or diamond solitaires often work for women with more refined classic style. If it’s not easy for you to figure out her style, then you may consider involving any of her closest friends or family members to trick her into disclosing her preferences for rings. Another trend is for couples to go shopping for engagement rings together, so you will have to decide if that can work for both of you.
Size of the ring
Your quest for choosing the perfect engagement ring wouldn’t be complete without considering the size factor. Find out if her ring size is below or above the average ring size, then try as much as possible to avoid buying a smaller ring. You can always resize the ring after proposing, but it’s better to buy a bigger ring than a small one she won’t be able to wear at all.
About the author:
Lucy Perry is a twenty-something student of life from the UK who loves to travel, stay healthy and passionately blog about love, relationships, family, travel and life experiences. Follow her updates on Twitter.