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How To Pick the Perfect Engagement Ring

Updated: Aug 14, 2023

Find the perfect ring style for your partner, and become an expert in diamond shapes

The engagement is one of the most significant moments in a couple's life since it symbolizes their decision to spend the rest of their lives together. An engagement ring is a material representation of this wonderful event. The search for the perfect ring, however, is never simple. Someone who doesn't frequently buy jewelry may not have a lot of experience selecting the best piece from the many available. If you're looking for a ring, how do you know which one to choose? We have the best advice, straight from the experts.

First, Know Your Partner:

Do you intend to involve your fiancé or girlfriend in picking the ring? Or do you plan to make it a complete surprise? Find out which strategy they favor. If you are shopping without your partner, the jeweler will likely ask about them, so be prepared! Get your adjectives in order:

  • Do you find your partner to be conventional or hip?

  • Is silver, gold, platinum or rose gold or another precious metal their go-to for jewelry?

  • Do most of the clothes in her closet belong to the dressy category, or does she prefer more casual wear?

  • Most importantly, have they dropped hints to you, shown you pictures or shared ideas with you on what they actually want?

Find out What Size Ring You Are About to Buy:

At the moment when you are down on one knee, you want to be sure the ring goes on smoothly, yet provides just enough force to keep it in place. Shopping for an engagement ring together makes it simple to determine the perfect size, but if the proposal is a surprise, it can be stressful. If you have a ring size chart, picking the proper size is a breeze. Simply measure your finger or that of your soon-to-be spouse, and locate the corresponding ring size on the accompanying chart.

It's one thing to determine your own ring size, but quite another if you're trying to keep the purchase a secret! In order to propose to your future spouse without them finding out, here are some tips for determining their ring size: You might get lucky if you ask a close friend or family member who knows your spouse well because they already know the answer from past chats between the two of you. Even if it doesn't work, you can always try sneaking the inquiry into the conversation. If they are light sleepers, it may be difficult to determine their size, but if you are feeling sneaky, you can wrap a string around their finger as they sleep and then apply the above formula to determine their size. Diabolical right?!

Last option is definitely the easiest - guess! Near enough is good enough for the proposal. Double check with your jeweler at the time of purchase, but most likely once you have given your new fiancé their engagement ring, they will likely offer to resize the ring for free.

The 4Cs of Diamond Buying:

The "Four Cs" (color, cut, clarity, and carat) are the factors in a diamond grading certificate, and most frequently cited by diamond specialists.

A flawless or ‘D’ stone isn't necessary to make a stunning ring, although we are certain it would! The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) grades stones on a scale from ‘D’ to ‘Z’, but the experience you have with a stone is far more important than any numerical evaluation it may have gotten. The grade can be used as an indicator (check it out here -, so read on for a summary of each, but don't let this be your only deciding factor.

Cut: A diamond's brightness and sparkle depend on how skillfully it was cut, as the stone's facets reflect and refract light. The jewel cutter makes all the difference. A rock's ultimate appearance is drastically affected by the method of cutting it.

Color: Between D (most pure or flawless) to Z (light yellow), diamonds are graded on their color. It's true that colorless diamonds are rare and extremely valuable, but most diamond engagement rings for sale are white and sit higher on the scale. It's important to inquire about the color because this factor, more than any other, will affect the ring's aesthetic.

Pro Tip: You can enhance the color of a diamond by choosing a white gold or platinum setting instead of yellow or rose gold, which could make the diamond look more yellow.

Clarity: The clarity of a diamond is measured by how spotless its surface is. Ideally, a diamond would have no more than a handful of inclusions (minerals or microscopic cracks). They progress from "Internally Flawless" (I.F.) to "Very Very Slightly Included" (V.V.I. ), "Very Slightly Included" (VS), "Slightly Included" (S.I. ), and "Intact" (I) (Included).

Most inclusions can't be seen by the naked eye - you would need a microscope to see them. For this reason, clarity is probably the least important factor when selecting your diamond ring.

Carat: This one is the most obvious. The weight of a gem is measured in carats. As carat weight increases, so does the size of the stone... and the price!

Don’t Break Your Bank, Know Your Budget:

As the first piece of advice, you shouldn't feel obligated to spend more than two or three months' worth of your income on an engagement ring. The truth is that you shouldn't go above what you can comfortably afford. The price of the diamond is not indicative of the price of your love.

Do not put yourself into debt - that's not a great way to begin your new life together.

Think really hard before considering using your emergency fund to finance the purchase of a $15,000 or even $30,000 on the ring of your dreams. With enough time, patience and hustle, you could find the ideal ring; something your partner will adore, for much less.

Our insider tip is to hold out until you find a good sale. Black Friday is a great opportunity to pick up a beautiful piece of jewelry at a reasonable price.

Simply said, you should evaluate your current financial situation, allocate funds accordingly and stick to your budget!

Go To A Trusted Seller:

If you're in the market for an engagement ring, do your research before making a purchase. For once, avoiding crowds and waiting for delivery is not the best decision. Pick a reliable vendor who has established itself in the market and who can provide you with individualized assistance and guidance. Having an expert guide you through your options will help you locate the perfect ring without breaking the bank.

The Sad and Happy Part: Buy It!

Take a few deep breaths. That (might) be painful as your credit card is about to get a workout.

Finding the perfect engagement ring is exciting and nerve-racking, but don't worry, once you've found "the one" ...the hardest part is over!

After making your purchase, expect to receive a diamond grading report from an independent gemological association like GIA, as well as a thorough receipt from the jeweler (including the cut, clarity, carats, etc.), unless its a vintage ring or a rings under 1 carat where these may not be available). For insurance purposes, you may also want to have your ring appraised, and some jewelers will do just that.

Our last piece of advice is to make sure you have your new engagement ring in time for your proposal. If you're planning a surprise proposal, remember that the delivery time for an engagement ring can range from a few weeks to a few months, depending on whether you a buying something a-la-carte or having an engagement ring made to order.

An engagement ring symbolizes a couple's decision to spend the rest of their lives together

As San Diego’s premiere proposal planner, Proposals of San Diego creates moments that reflect the unique love story of each couple. We offer all-inclusive proposal packages, and plan one-of-a-kind experiences to ensure you have an Unforgettable Engagement.

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