It looks like you are all set to make a lifelong commitment to your beloved. And an engagement ring symbolizes the love that runs deep and knows no end. But with countless choices for a diamond ring to signal you are getting married, which one will fit your fair maiden’s hand and your budget as well?
The “rule” about spending an equivalent of three months’ worth of salary on a ring only adds to the pressure. Instead of being burdened by the amount, use the same number of months to find the perfect ring, for the yes you’ve been longing to hear.
Start with the 4 Cs
Your search begins with a crash course on diamonds, which are the go-to choice for rings. To realize your money’s worth, you must know that the value of a diamond is hinged on four qualities that go hand in hand and thus have to be taken as a whole:
Carat. It is the unit of measurement for the weight of a diamond. Carat does not necessarily refer to the stone’s size, although both variables can increase its value, especially the weight. The typical diamond weight ranges from 0.25 carats to 2 carats. Indeed, 2.5 carat engagement rings are a popular choice because they offer the size without the expensive price tag of diamonds weighing 3 carats, for example.
Cut. The stone can look bigger or smaller than its actual size because of the cut. But more importantly, the cut can make the diamond sparkle or lose some of its brilliance because of poor quality. Examples of popular diamond cuts are brilliant cut, princess cut, marquise cut, and oval cut.
Color. As diamonds become colorless, their value increases. Colorless diamonds are harder to find than those with traces of color, like yellow or brown. You can look into a colorlessness scale, where D to F is colorless, G to J is near colorless, and K to Z is faint to light. This discussion does not apply to fancy diamonds, whose saturation exudes color.
Clarity. The small imperfections and blemishes on the stone affect its clarity grade. The grading is based on how these inclusions look under the microscope. Flawless diamonds have no defects under a magnification of ten times, according to the American Gem Society.
Select Based on Her Style
Now’s the time to look closely at the kind of jewelry she wears and how she wears them. Is she adventurous with her accessories, mixing and matching fine and fancy jewelry? Does she go for classic pieces that look subtle and sometimes understated? Is she the type who prefers ornate over simple?
Some women tend to get self-conscious about the looks they get because of their engagement rings. Thus, it matters to have a good grasp of your partner’s style and personality so that you can get her the ring with the cut and style that she will love.
Look Into the Setting
Your choice for a setting plays a huge role in the style of the ring, which makes sense when you consider the points above. Some argue that how the stone is set or placed on the metal band is as essential as the center stone itself.
Engagement ring settings run plenty, but the more popular ones are the following:
A halo is created when smaller diamonds congregate around a bigger stone to create a giant sparkling piece.
The prong setting pushes the center stone forward with metal claws to bind the ring.
The pavé arrangement puts small diamonds on the band to add shine to the main stone without overwhelming it.
Setting metals can be gold or platinum. You may or may not need to resize your ring, but to be safe, ask which rings are open for resizing.
Arm yourself with patience, perseverance, and determination when visiting physical and online shops to get the engagement ring that gives you the bang for your buck. If you can get access to a jeweler, all the better to avoid getting scammed or shelling out more than what’s necessary.
Not all that sparkle are diamonds as some are look-alikes or are gems that are valued less. Give yourself time to assess, choose, and ultimately, buy.
With one knee bent, you ask for her hand in marriage and slip the ring onto her finger, but it doesn’t fit. To avoid this anticlimactic scenario and wasting the opportunity, you can ask her outright for the ring size and blow the surprise. Or get creative.
Casually borrow a ring she’s wearing, and pretend you’re interested in the design. Another way is to take her hand and make a mental note of her left ring finger. If stealthiness isn’t your best suit, enlist the help of her best friend, who must be sworn to secrecy.
Stay within Your Budget
Your girlfriend is lucky to have a thoughtful boyfriend who takes great lengths to put a ring on it. Diamonds are such a dazzling display that choosing among them is challenging, not to mention cash-draining if you get too distracted.
Take heart, and remain steadfast to succeed in your task of finding the ultimate engagement ring for her.