Buying an engagement ring is probably one of the most important things you’ll ever do. There’s a lot involved in the process. You have to think about ring styles, gemstones and find the choice that most suits your lifelong partner. More importantly, you need to get a high quality ring at a price that you can afford. This alone makes shopping for an engagement ring challenging. With so many different things to consider, finding the perfect ring definitely is no easy task. However, this doesn’t mean it have to be difficult.
Armed with the right knowledge, you can shop for and find an amazing engagement ring relatively easily. Simply follow these four tips if you want to make the process more straightforward.
1. Personal Style trumps Popular Trends
When you first decide to start shopping for an engagement ring, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by the sheer number of options. You will find rings in every shape, style and option. Considering that jewelry trends change frequently, it can be hard to figure out what is timeless, what’s desirable and what is the best of the bunch. A smart way to narrow down the choices at your disposal? Consider your partner’s personal style and let this guide you above all else. Take a sneaky look at their everyday jewelry: do they wear more classic, understated pieces or are they a big fan of gold or silver?
This can help you get a good idea of whether they’d want a ring that’s more dramatic or ornate, or if they’re more likely to go for a simple, refined ring instead. Consider your future spouse’s lifestyle too. As the Zoe Report recommends, choose an engagement ring they’ll feel comfortable wearing every day. It’s the best way to get enough wear out of it in the end. Do they need a smaller ring because they work with their a lot hands? Or do they never get their hands dirty, making them a good candidate for wearing big gemstones? Think about all these factors as you shop.
2. Ignore the 4 C’s
One of the most important aspects of choosing an engagement ring is picking the diamond that will be its centerpiece. Many engagement ring buyers focus on getting the perfect, flawless diamond. However, the gemstone itself doesn’t actually need to be perfect. As long as it’s tasteful and in good shape. The four C’s are used to determine the quality of a diamond and it’s rating. Those Cs are: cut, carat, color, and clarity. Finding a diamond that’s “perfect” means choosing one that has ticked all four ‘C’ boxes. This can result in an overly expensive diamond. Thankfully, there are other options: instead of finding a perfect diamond, you can focus on one or two aspects of the four Cs.
A diamond with a D Flawless rating (a perfect rating) is beautiful, but it might not be the most visually stunning diamond out there. And remember that one C (the “color” rating) doesn’t actually indicate anything about a stone’s quality. All that the four Cs do, is give you information about a stone. They can’t determine which one is the best for you.
This means that the four Cs can be a starting point to help you understand a diamond’s overall quality – and its price. Always trust your own opinion: you should choose the diamond that looks the best in your opinion, and the one that meets your budget. You can also consider other gemstones. Diamonds might be the most popular stone for engagement rings, but they aren’t the only option. Plenty of other engagement rings feature stones like rubies, emeralds, sapphires and even moissanite, a diamond alternative. Another interesting option are lab-grown diamonds. If your partner is a fan of other gemstones, you can consider even more options.
3. Shop With Your Partner
A very common mistake for individuals who are planning to propose: shopping alone. However, if you pick out something as important as an engagement ring by yourself, you’re making thing quite difficult for yourself. If you ask for the help of a friend or loved one, that doesn’t always make the process easier. They might not know what your partner wants. And they might not be able to keep the secret, either. Realistically, nobody knows your partner’s style better than your partner. So: why not make the engagement ring shopping process easier by asking them to tag along?
Several studies confirm that shopping for rings with your partner guarantees that you’ll buy the perfect ring. Ok, you might not be able to keep the fact that you’re proposing a secret or a surprise. But at least you’ll be able to discuss rings together, narrow down the options, and find the perfect ones to choose from. Take your partner shopping and try out a bunch of rings. Discuss what they like about each ring, and ask them to choose a few ones that they really like. Then, return to the store (or online shop) by yourself. Got to keep at least some of that mystery alive! Your partner won’t know which exact ring you’re choosing, or when you’re proposing. But you’ll know for sure that you picked a ring they absolutely love. Future fiancé points easily scored!
4. Don’t leave without negotiating the price
Let’s face it: the price is one of the most important aspects of buying an engagement ring. Once you’ve decided which style of ring suits your partner, you’ll need to pick a stone, setting, and make sure the ring fits your budget. This is not always an easy task when you’re dealing with expensive gemstones like diamonds and ditto metals like white gold and platinum. However, there genuinely is a way to save – and it’s one few people consider. Enter the simple act of negotiating about the price of an engagement ring. This is something that’s definitely worth doing, whether you’re working with a family jewelry store or a well-known jewelry chain.
Engagement rings are one of the most marked up pieces of jewelry for sale. According to Brides.com, they’re marked up by as much as 500 percent⁵. That means that jewelry stores will make engagement rings more expensive than they’re actually worth on purpose, hoping to profit from the extra money off the sale. A good jeweler will work with you and be on your side to make a sale. This means you can – and should – negotiate the price of the gemstone and the ring itself. Tell the jeweler what it is that you like and what your preferred budget is. Ask them if they can match another store’s price, or if they can offer a discount if you buy a wedding band along with the engagement ring. There are a number of different ways you might be able to save. First of all: do your research. Learn what different types of stones, and diamonds at different grades, are really worth. Compare prices from other jewelers, including wholesalers and learn about where you can buy gemstones. Then, you can head to the jewelry store armed with the best information to negotiate a better deal on the perfect engagement ring.