What do you need to know when buying an engagement ring?
Buying an engagement ring is an exciting part of a couple's journey to marriage, but it can also be a daunting prospect, especially if it is being bought as a surprise! It is natural to wonder where to start and what to consider when taking the steps to find the perfect engagement ring, which is why we at Allure Jewellers have put together this guide. We hope that it will offer a good insight and understanding into the things you will need to think about, whether you are looking for yourself or for your partner, as well as offering some practical advice and tips. However, if you feel that you would benefit from some personal help, or have any questions, then please feel free to get in touch with us at Allure Jewellers, or book an engagement ring consultation at our Hatton Garden Showroom. We look forward to hearing from you!
What are the precious metal choices for engagement rings?
The precious metals, as well as those most commonly used within the bands of engagement and wedding bands are yellow gold, rose gold, silver, platinum and palladium. The purity level, durability, look, and rarity differs greatly amongst each of the precious metals, which does leave quite a big gap between the prices of them at times. To learn more about each of the precious metals, their qualities, and their characteristics, then take a look at our guide to precious metals. We hope that this information will guide you towards choosing the precious metal that is right for you or your partner!
Which precious metal should you choose?
With the wide range of precious metal options to choose from for your engagement and wedding rings, it can be quite overwhelming. This is especially true if you are trying to decide on the right metal for your partner as a part of a surprise proposal, as it plays a huge role in the overall look, feel and longevity of the engagement ring. However, there is no need to worry! As long as you take some time to learn about the individual qualities of each of the precious metal options by clicking here, as well as considering yours or your partner's lifestyle.
As an example, if you or your partner live an active, hands-on lifestyle, then your engagement ring will benefit from a metal that doesn’t tarnish easily and that is less pliable than the others. On top of practicality, beauty and style should definitely be taken into account. It is very likely that an engagement ring will be worn everyday, so choose something that is durable, as well as beautiful!
When buying an engagement ring for your partner as a surprise, the metal choice can also prove to be a difficult decision as you may not be sure of which one would be their preferred choice! There is a simple solution to this, though; take a look at their existing jewellery, what metal is it? If the jewellery that they wear on a day-to-day basis is gold, then it is likely that they would wear a gold engagement ring, and vice versa for the other shades of precious metal. You can also think about what would pair nicely alongside their existing jewellery, which also applies to picking the setting and style of the engagement ring.
What are the engagement ring settings and styles?
The setting of a diamond engagement ring refers to how the gemstones are delicately combined with the ring's metal band. This is usually done by mounting the stones onto the ring, or by setting the stones into the metal. There are many different types of settings; all of which contribute to an engagement ring's overall style, appearance, desirability and durability. The most popular settings and styles that are used within diamond engagement rings are solitaire, multi-stone, halo and diamond set.
The ring style and setting combine to define how the stones and metals used are presented, contributing to the overall durability, look and feel of an engagement ring. Therefore, it is clear that finding your perfect setting and style of a ring is one of the most important elements to consider when buying an engagement ring!
Which engagement ring style is right for you or your partner?
The styles of engagement rings vary hugely, so it is important to find a style that compliments your or your partner's taste and personality, especially as it will be worn every day! Some of your choices are simple and elegant, displaying classic beauty, whilst others may be more extravagant and decorative. As an example, you have the brilliant round diamond solitaire engagement ring, and the emerald halo diamond engagement ring. Both of these rings are equally as beautiful, but differ greatly in style, and therefore, who they may appeal to.
If you are picking out your own engagement ring, then your choice should ultimately come down to which style is your own, personal favourite! If you are engagement ring shopping for your partner as a surprise and are unsure of their preferred style, then you can take a look at their existing jewellery, and try to pick a style that suits what they already wear. By choosing something that is timeless in design, as well as displaying a unique style, you can be certain that your chosen engagement ring will stay classic and special forever, never going out of fashion!
To learn more about the different ring settings and styles that are available…
How do you find the right ring size?
Discovering your ring size can be as simple as heading to your local jewellery shop and having your finger measured, and it is also the best way to ensure that you have the exact ring size. Book a ring size consultation at Allure Jewellers here. However, you may wish to gain an understanding of your ring finger size before you do this, or may just be looking for an immediate answer to your question, or perhaps you don’t know your partner's ring size, and don’t want to spoil the surprise by asking them! In these cases, there are a few easy ways to find out yours or your partner's perfect ring fit at home.
One way to find out your correct ring finger measurement is to use our free ring sizer guide! All you have to do is simply download, and follow the instructions. For access to our free, printable ring sizer, and instructions on how to use it, take a look at our ring size guide. Of course, we will be happy to assist you any way that we can, so please feel free to get in touch with our team at Allure Jewellers with any queries you may have!
Tips for finding your partner's ring size
Firstly, you can take a wise guess! As a person’s fingers tend to be proportionate to their body type, it will allow you to make an educated guess about your partner’s ring finger size. As an example, if your partner is petite, then it is likely that they will have smaller hands. If this is the case, then a woman’s ring size could be H or I, or for men, it could be around a size N. Typically, average height equals average finger size, so this principle also applies to your partner’s height. In this case, a woman’s finger size could be L ½, and for men, a size Q. However, if your partner is above the average height or build, then we recommend beginning at a size N for women, and T for men.
If you are unsure about using this method to find your partner’s ring size, then another way would be to borrow an existing ring of theirs. This way, you have the opportunity to take a ring that you know they already wear to a jeweller to get it sized. By doing this, you will be able to gain a more reliable insight into the finger size of your partner. Although this method does prove to be effective on most occasions, it is important to remember that engagement rings and wedding rings are worn on the ring finger, that is the fourth finger of the left hand. Just because your partner’s existing ring may fit on the index finger, as an example, it may not fit as well on the ring finger, so this is something to take into consideration.
One more tip would be to use your own finger to try and determine the ring size of your significant other. How could this provide a dependable answer? By sliding a ring that your partner already wears onto your own ring finger, and marking where it gets stuck, shows where your partner’s ring will fit comfortably on their own ring finger. Then, you can show this mark or measurement to a jeweller, and they will be able to provide you with the sizing.
If you don’t get the sizing of your or your partner’s engagement ring exactly right, then there is no need to worry! Here at Allure Jewellers, we offer an excellent ring resizing service, where we can seamlessly resize most types of rings to your requirements. Get in touch with us about our ring resizing service here, and we will get back to you as soon as possible!
Choosing your diamond - the 4C's
The 4C’s, that is the cut, colour, clarity and carat weight of a diamond, are the most essential components of a diamond that you need to consider before purchasing an engagement ring. This is because no two diamonds are the same, and the quality and beauty of each diamond is influenced by each of the 4C’s individually. Diamond grading experts, such as the GIA, use a systematic, effective way to evaluate and determine these characteristics, otherwise, it would just not be possible to compare one diamond against another, or to discuss the qualities of an individual diamond!
Although these characteristics do factor and work together, the cut, colour, clarity and carat weight of a diamond each have a different effect on the stone. Therefore, it is very important to consider these four characteristics that create the desirable, stunning qualities of this gemstone, before choosing your diamond. Having a good understanding of the diamond 4C’s and what impact they will have on your stone will help you to make this decision!
The cut of a diamond has the largest effect on the stone’s brilliance, fire and finish. It refers to the way in which a raw diamond is skillfully cut, not its shape. The ideal, high-grade diamond cut will reflect all of the light that enters into the stone, creating an unmatched sparkle. On the other hand, cuts that are too shallow or too deep, and therefore of a lower grade, won’t reflect much light at all, which would cause the diamond to appear dull-looking. So if you value the glisten of a diamond, and are looking for an engagement ring with a great wow-factor that you can spot across the room, then it is recommended that you look for a diamond that has a grade of good or above. Diamond cut is graded on a scale of poor-excellent, with excellent providing the optimum sparkle and shimmer.
The clarity of a diamond means how many inclusions or flaws are within a diamond, and are graded from slightly included to flawless. These imperfections do make a difference to how a stone reflects the light, as well as how they look overall. However, diamonds that are flawless, or have no inclusions, are extremely rare and very expensive, and most of the time, in high quality diamonds, the inclusions within a diamond can only be seen through a microscope, or in lower quality diamonds, by looking very closely. So if you are searching for an affordable diamond that doesn’t compromise the quality and beauty of the engagement ring, then a diamond of a VS1 - VS2 clarity may be your preferred option.
The colour of a diamond can vary quite significantly, from clear stones to yellow and grey coloured stones. These differences in colour influence how expensive a diamond will be, as the clearer the diamond, the more it is worth. Diamond colour grading starts at D, as an exceptionally white diamond, and works alphabetically through to J, as a slightly tinted white diamond. For the best quality at an affordable price, we recommend looking for a diamond on the clearer end of the scale, such as a G-J graded stone, which are near colourless.
Diamonds are measured by their carat weight, so when buying an engagement ring, it is important to remember that choosing a large stone doesn’t necessarily mean that it is the best diamond! This is because a stone that is large in appearance may be of low quality in other aspects of its characteristics such as its clarity, cut and colour, whereas a smaller stone may be of a better overall quality, and therefore of higher value.
As well as this, it is also important to know that the diamond carat weight and the total carat weight of an engagement ring are not the same thing. For example, you may decide to opt for an engagement ring with multiple smaller diamonds, such as a halo or three stone style, and it is the weight of all of these stones that determines the total carat weight of the ring, which will be reflected within its price. However, the carat weight refers to the weight of a larger, singular diamond, which is typically the main driving factor in determining the price of an engagement ring. So even though in most cases, a higher carat weight does mean that a stone is larger or more expensive, it is not always the case, which is something to take note of when choosing your perfect diamond. Of course, although it has a big impact, carat weight is not the only price affecting factor when it comes to the 4C's of a diamond, it is a combined effort between all of the diamond characteristics.
Discover more in our guide to the diamond 4C's.
Engagement rings at Allure Jewellers
Here at Allure Jewellers, we have a beautiful selection of diamond engagement rings in a variety of diamond shapes, ring setting and styles, precious metals and prices. Browse our collection online today, or feel free to book an appointment at out Hatton Garden Showroom in London, where a member of our team will be more than happy to guide you through your engagement ring options.