If you’ve decided to propose on Valentine’s Day, the pressure’s on. Not only do you need to plan the most romantic day of her life but you’ve also got to get the ring 100% right. There’s a lot to take in with diamond shopping – so we’ve written this guide makes life easier for you.
Included this article:
- How to choose a ring style she loves
- Diamond buying
- Ring size
- Coloured gems
- What metal?
- Your budget
1. Don’t leave it until the last minute
Most jewellers don’t stock all their rings in every single size. You may have to order the ring and this could take up to a few weeks. So make sure to shop early.
2. The style she wants
For your partner, the most important thing about an engagement ring is the style. She will wear it on her hand for the rest of her life, so it needs to look perfect. To suss this out, look at the jewellery she already wears. Big and sparkly? Understated and simple? If you’re not sure, ask her sister or friends for advice.
2. Ring size
Next, you’ll need her finger size. This is crucial. A ring that doesn’t fit will ruin the big moment. To get her ring size, measure one of her existing rings with a ring sizer app, get a free ring sizer tool in the post, measure her finger at a jewellery store, or ask her friends to help you find out her ring size in secret.
3. Your budget
There’s a myth that an engagement ring should cost a month’s salary. Luckily, the reality is that there are no rules. Just remember, she’ll wear the ring all her life, so it needs to be strong and robust enough to stand daily wear. Find a friendly jeweller and get the best ring you can afford. Read more here about How Much to Spend on an Engagement Ring.
4. Diamond shape
Most people think all diamonds sparkle. However, sparkle actually depends on the diamond shape, called the ‘cut’. Here are diamond cuts in order of sparkliness:
♦ Round cut – Round, the most sparkly
♦ Princess cut – Square, almost as sparkly as round
♦ Pear shaped – Looks like a teardrop, medium sparkle
♦ Marquise cut – Rounded sides tapering to points, medium sparkle
♦ Emerald cut – Rectangular, giving off long flashes rather than sparkle
5. Diamond quality – the easy way
Next, check diamond quality. Most people find this a complete headache, but we’ll make it very simple for you: If you’re buying a solitaire diamond up to 0.50 carat, H/Si quality is good value for money. With a stone that size you won’t be able to see any flaws in the diamond with your naked eye, and your diamond will have a beautiful white colour.
(For larger diamonds, you may want to consider a better quality. In this case, ask a trusted jeweller to recommend a minimum quality that represents the best value.)
6. Alternatively, pick a coloured gem
A colourful gem is beautiful and stands out from the crowd. Kate Middleton’s famous blue sapphire has made gemstone engagement rings incredibly popular. Plus they’re more affordable per carat than diamonds, so you’ll get a bigger ring for your money. Sapphires and rubies are the safest bet because they are almost as hard as diamonds. Rubies are red. Sapphires come in blue, pink, yellow and green if you want more choice.
To learn more, read Can any ring be an engagement ring? Or does it have to be a diamond?
7. The metal
Silver is NOT an option, it’s way too soft and will not withstand daily wear. Your decision will ultimately depend on what colour metal your partner prefers. There are 4 precious metal choices that are strong enough for engagement rings:
- White gold
- Yellow gold
- Rose gold
8. Finally, it’s time to buy THE ring!
Now that you know exactly what you want, you’re in a good position to chat with a trusted jeweller. Stick to retailers that are members of The NAJ. Also, do check your jewellery is hallmarked and comes with a guarantee.
Good luck! Get in touch with our Personal Shoppers if you have any questions. We are always happy to chat and help 🙂
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Any prices quoted in this article were those available on 16th January 2019 and may vary after this date.