This is so exciting – you’re getting engaged! You know what that means, it’s time to find that perfect engagement ring. Don’t know where to start looking? Are you overwhelmed? Did you drink enough water today? No need to stress, this guide will help you out! (This doesn’t have to be done in this exact order, btw. As long as you take all of these things into consideration you’ll be good to go!) Let’s get started on how to pick an engagement ring.
First of all – did you know that the process of buying an engagement ring isn’t secret anymore? So if you’re really stuck on what to get your fiancé, just straight up ask them. They’ll go shopping with you, maybe even make a day of it and go get some brunch while you’re at it.
If you’re going the surprise route, the first thing to consider is WHERE you’d like the ring to be from. There’s lots of options these days aside from the big name jewelers, like online jewelers that let you custom design your ring, ethical & charity based jewelers, etc. Here are some names that have stuck out to us, just to help you get the ball rolling:
Time to decide the stone you want. As you may have heard, millennials have killed the diamond industry (along with many other industries, whoops), so the diamond is not the definitive engagement ring stone anymore. Feel free to dabble with sapphire, pink morganite, ruby, moissanite, opal, etc. If you (or your partner) decide they want a diamond, make sure to take into account: cut, clarity, carat & color.
Be sure of the metal band you want to get. Is your partner a silver person? Rose gold is super hip. Yellow gold is very retro. Just make sure to account for its durability and how it will match the stone!
Next you’ll want to choose the setting of your diamond or gemstone. You can go the simple yet classic solitaire stone route, halo (small stones surrounding the larger stone), pavé (smaller stones line the band itself), or go super modern and get a duo stone, you baller you.
Does your fiancé know what kind of shape they want their stone to be? Or are they more of a wait-what-there’s-more-than-one-shape type of person? The usual stone shapes to choose from are round, oval, pear, marquise, princess cut & cushion cut.
Now, there is a good reason for the millennials-killed-the-diamond-industry story: diamonds can be EXPENSIVE. With that being said, it’s time to figure out your ring buying budget without completely emptying your pockets. Since there is a plethora of ring companies, there is for SURE one that has everything you want and lets you make a purchase without you needing to spend 3 years’ salary like Michael Scott.
At the end of the day, it shouldn’t matter what stone you buy, what shape it’s in, or how much you spent – your person is your person, no matter what, and they’ll love whatever you can get for them.
…unless they have been dropping hints for like, over a year, showing you pictures of the same ring over and over. In that case….it matters.
We hope this short and sweet checklist gave you some insight on how to buy an engagement ring — now go measure your ring finger! Next step: plan your wedding using this wedding planning checklist.
We're Sava, a small studio of photographers who bonded over our similar educational background, love of art, & general affinity for timeless wedding photos. Based in NYC, will travel, will pick up your coffee order on the way.