Tips On Buying An Engagement Ring
Know the 4Cs
Know diamond shapes and cuts
Now that you know about the 4Cs is it safe to say that you can buy that ring? Not entirely without understanding shapes and cuts.
A diamond shape is the general outline of the gem when viewed from the top. The most popular engagement ring shape is the round. The round brilliant cut, like the one in this Diamond Nexus review, tends to be more expensive than other shapes.
There are other shapes, of course, like the marquise, pear, oval, rectangle, etc, which would look just as awesome.
Cut, on the other hand, refers to how a diamond’s facets are arranged. In this regard, the brilliant cut is the most popular as it maximizes a diamond’s brightness. Hence, the most popular shape and the cut combination is the brilliant round cut, with 57 to 58 facets.
Another popular cutting style is the step cut. It has long sleek lines. Step-cut diamonds have an elegant and sophisticated gleam. They tend to show more of their color and clarity.
View under different lighting
Diamonds look different under different lighting conditions like daylight, fluorescent light, or spotlight. Jewelers use white spotlighting to bring out the gem’s brilliance and fire. It makes diamonds look more dazzling.
Spotlights, however, are not available in most day-to-day situations. You can do your own check by viewing your diamond outdoors under normal light, or under a shade to simulate diffused light. Fluorescent light in your office and the diffused lighting in your home can do just as well.
Fluorescent light brings out a diamond’s brightness, while a traditional incandescent bulb brings out its fire.
Decide on the metal for your ring
Metal color can affect the color of the gemstone. For this reason, white gold like the one in this James Allen review and platinum are the most common metals used for engagement rings with colorless to near-to-colorless diamonds. They don’t affect the stone’s colorlessness.
On the other hand, yellow gold can make a colorless diamond look yellowish. Gold or rose gold metals are great for diamonds of lower color grades or colored diamonds and other semi-precious stones.
If you choose a yellowish or brownish diamond, a white gold or platinum setting will make it look dazzling due to the color contrast between the two.
In this aspect, the expert opinion of your jeweler will be invaluable.
Decide on a setting
Setting refers to how a diamond is set or mounted onto the metal band. It is also intended to highlight the beauty of the center stone.
Style, on the other hand, refers to the overall design aesthetic of the setting. Here are the most common engagement ring settings:
In a prong setting, the diamond is held in place by four to six prongs (narrow metal supports). The prongs can be rounded on the top to make them look sharp (claw prongs), edgy and modern.
Four prongs give a round diamond a slightly square look and cover less of the diamond’s surface area. They make the center stone look larger.
Six prongs, on the other hand, give a round diamond a more rounded look. It also holds the diamond more securely. But it hides a large part of the stone’s surface area.
Of course, there are several variations to the prong setting—depending on the jeweler’s creativity.
If you want to provide better protection against damage, loose or chipped center stone, the bezel setting is the ideal choice
In a bezel setting a thin strip of metal is pushed or hammered around the diamond to hold it in place. There are no prongs in a bezel setting that can snag on gloves, stockings, hair, or even scratch the skin. But it hides a huge part of the diamond from view.
Choose a jeweler
An engagement ring is a significant investment, hence you would like to choose a jeweler you can trust. Here are a few things to look for in a jeweler:
- He or she should have the knowledge and training to help you make an informed purchase.
- A jeweler with a reliable reputation in the community and open to questions about diamonds.
- He or she should be able to provide you with a variety of options in an honest and straightforward way.
- And he or she must be credentialed by highly recognized bodies like the GIA, or AJP (Applied Jewelry Professional).
- Lest you forget, your jeweler should have certifications on the diamonds he or she is selling.
Know the ring size
Once the above items are checked out, you must get the finger size of the wearer. It would be tragic to go all through the items above only to end up with a ring of the wrong size.
This is done using a ring sizer, which is no more than a series of plastic or metal rings of different sizes. If your dearly beloved’s ring size falls between two sizes, a good jeweler can easily fix the problem.
But if you intend to give it as a surprise, which most certainly you do, do a bit of sleuthing by borrowing your fiancee’s ring and tracing its inner diameter on a piece of paper and having your jeweler do the rest. Take note, however, that ring fingers between the left and right hand may vary, so be consistent with your guesswork. Some settings, like the solitaire, are easier to resize than others.
The above are the most crucial items you must know before plunging into your dream engagement ring. They also lead to the opening question of this article…
How to Buy a $ 10,000 Engagement Ring
This amount is not to be trifled with for two reasons:
- The average American income is $ 6,228/month. Obviously, this is way above what most Americans can afford.
- Across the board, the average spending on engagement rings is $ 5,000 (see chart).
If these figures don’t sober you up, or if you belong to the 16% who can afford to splurge $10,000 on an engagement ring, then you are doing well in life. Congratulations.
But before you log into Brilliant Earth’s website, to shop for this kind of engagement ring. here are some questions, like an obstacle course, to hurdle:
1. Is 10000 on an engagement ring a lot?
Yes, for most people, it is a lot of money. As shown in the chart above, only about 16% of the engaged population can afford it.
2. How much diamond can I get for 10000?
Diamonds are not measured in “how much,” but in “how large, or heavy?” At current prices, a $10,000 diamond roughly weighs between 0.75 to 2 carats. The variation in prices is dependent on factors outlined in the 4Cs.
To put a visual parameter on how large a 0.75- carat diamond is, it is about 5.7 mm across. And if you want to scale your budget down and want to know what you get between a $5,000 vs $10,000 engagement ring, the answer is simple. A $5,500 budget will get you a diamond weighing a carat or less.
Now let’s get down to the business of…
How do I Buy an Expensive Engagement Ring
Don’t take the question condescendingly. Remember that only 16% of engaged people can afford to buy a $10,000 engagement ring. So, by any measure, it is an EXPENSIVE jewelry item.
What does a 10 000 engagement ring look like? It can look like anything you want. It can be a simple solitaire with accent stones around the center stone, with accent stones around the band. Or, it can be as elegant as this princess-cut engagement ring.
It can look any way you want it. The only limitation is the total number of carats that you can afford for $10,000, which can range between 0.9 to 1.5 carats. You can go as high as 2 carats for lower-grade diamonds.
Keep that in mind, and make sure the following checks out:
With a budget like this, look for a diamond with an excellent cut. Cut refers to a diamond’s proportions and symmetry. These parameters determine the amount of light the gemstone captures, and the diamond’s level of sparkle.
This refers to a diamond’s natural inclusion or lack thereof. It is an important factor when shopping for diamonds because some flaws may only show up under close inspection. Flaws can ruin the appearance of the entire ring.
While it may be a good idea to look for a Flawless diamond, it is next to impossible. Flawless diamonds are extremely rare, hence very expensive. For your budget, settle for a VVS2 clarity grade or higher. But be sure to use HD imagery (when shopping online) to make sure it has no visible inclusions before buying it.
Diamonds come in different colors. In fact, they are color-graded according to the D-Z scale. “D” colored diamonds are considered colorless, while “Z” diamonds have noticeable yellow or brownish tints.
D, E, and F-colored diamonds are very rare, making them more expensive. To be within your budget choose near-colorless stones such as a G or H. At first glance, they will appear white, yet less expensive.
For your guidance,
- D, E, and F-colored diamonds pair well with platinum, palladium, and white gold metal settings.
- G, H, I, and J diamonds are good with white, yellow, or rose gold metals.
- K and L diamonds will also be good with yellow gold or rose gold.
Though it was mentioned beforehand that a $10,000 engagement ring would be around 2 carats, you need not go by this rule of thumb. You can still get a marvelous ring if you have a good balance between carat weight and cut. A ring’s beauty is not only about size but in its weight distribution, shape, and cut quality.
In fact, these diamond cuts appear larger than their carat weights: marquise, oval, and pear.
Over and above its emotional significance, an engagement ring, especially a $10,000 engagement ring, is an investment. It should be treated with respect and cared for. Hence, you should take that extra step when buying one by securing a grading report covering the stone you purchase.
It cannot be denied that there are a lot of less-than-ethical merchants who are always on the lookout for unwary customers with cash who can easily be duped into parting with their hard-earned money. So be sure your engagement ring purchase is certified by any of the various diamond certification bodies such as the GIA, AGS, GCAL, and Diamond Foundry.
Experts strongly suggest that you buy your engagement ring from an online jewelry store to get the best for your $10,000. You will get a better deal from an online store than from a mortar-and-brick jeweler.
A diamond engagement ring from a mortar-and-brick jewelry store is often overpriced to take care of associated costs in doing business. They have expensive storefronts, stockroom space, sales staff, and other associated costs. In the end, you will be paying more for things not directly associated with your purchase.
A $10,000 engagement ring budget can buy you an elegant diamond engagement ring with an equally beautiful setting. that will make for a perfect momentous occasion.
But it need not go that high in expense. There are plenty of choices to spend a lot less, yet make your engagement memorable. After all, it’s not the amount that counts but the sincerity and affection behind the bequeathing of such a ring.
Now, in case you and your beloved decide to tie the knot, check out our guide “Ring Shopping: What You Need To Remember For Wedding Rings.”