You Hear Wedding Bells?
Diamond Engagement Ring Buying Guides
you've been in that perfect relationship for some time now. You've
been dropping hints about the future and he is receiving you loud
and clear. It's time to do a little "window shopping."
you don't want to leave one of the most important decisions in
your life entirely up to him, do you? He WILL lose sleep over
finding that perfect diamond engagement ring, even though he will
not admit it. So why not help him out a little, give him some
guidance and direction.
so many choices when it comes to shopping for engagement rings
and you and he will hear a lot of advice from a lot of "helpful"
people. His "Uncle Charlie" will know a guy who knows
a guy. Your sister will tell you that you have to get your diamond
ring where she got hers. Your co-worker will tell you about this
really cool Web site with great prices on diamond rings...and
on and on. There will be advice around every corner.
Let's go through
some of the available options and identify the pros and cons of
each. This should help you both figure out what the best options
are when you start shopping for your engagement ring...
Local Jewelry Store:
Definitely a great place to start. A jewelry store will have a
small selection of pre-set engagement rings for you to see in
person, and try on. If you run into a helpful sales associate
that is willing to spend some time with you and explain all of
the nuances of buying diamonds, it will be well worth your time.
Seeing the diamond in person. Nothing beats the feeling of seeing
diamonds sparkle on your finger! Talking to a knowledgeable
human being and getting answers to questions face to face.
Limited selection. Most local jewelry stores do not have the
financial resources to carry a large inventory of diamonds.
However, many stores do work with suppliers who are able to
send them goods on memorandum (like consignment) if they have
a customer who is looking for a particular diamond.
PRICE You will pay more at a jeweler, period. Sure you can try
and negotiate and feel like you got a better price, but a jeweler
will not sell you that diamond for less than a substantial profit.
Most jewelers need to make a "keystone" markup on
every item, which is double what they paid for that diamond.
This markup covers the high overhead costs of running a store
including insurance, rent and sales commissions.
If you are looking for a ring that is truly unique, this is the
place for you. You'll need to do some leg work and visit many
different stores to see what's available, but it could be worth
it in the long run.
Most likely to find a one of a kind ring. If you have the need
to be an original, stick to your search and you will find that
proverbial "diamond in the rough."
Unless you get lucky, expect a long search. You may only find
a handful, if any rings in the shops you visit. Most rings will
not have any type of certification or appraisal. Unless you
know a great deal about diamond grading, it is possible to get
taken advantage of very easily. Hint: Don't be afraid to ask
to have the ring appraised BEFORE you make a final commitment
or ask about return policies if an appraisal after the fact
says you paid much more than it's worth.
The Holy Grail and the Bottomless Pit of information, all wrapped
in one. By far, you will find the largest selection of diamonds
and engagement rings here, but that can be quite overwhelming.
Start with the basics and work your way through this checklist.
1. Shape -
Diamonds are cut into 10 most common shapes, but there are countless
other "designer" shapes popping up in the industry on
a regular basis. Most of the shapes are self explanatory (round,
oval, pear, heart), but do you know what a Marquise or a Radiant
looks like? Take a look at the most commonly available diamond
shapes and decide what you like best.
2. Size -
Bigger is better, right? Not necessarily. Unless your fiancé
has very deep pockets, you will not be getting a 5 carat boulder
to weigh you down. Too many men are convinced that it has to be
big. Would you like to have a big ugly rock that is dull and lifeless
on your hand, just so you could tell everyone it's 3 carats, or
would you rather have a beautiful, sparkling beacon of light catching
all of your friends' attention. You won't have to wave your hand
in front of them to get noticed, they will come to you!
3. The 4 C's
- The most common phrase in the diamond business and the most
important when shopping for a diamond online. The
4 C's represent a diamond's cut, color, clarity and carat
weight. CUT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT ASPECT OF A DIAMOND'S
FIRE AND BRILLIANCE. So many people buying diamonds focus
on color and clarity, that cut is often overlooked. You can spend
a fortune buying a flawless clarity and perfect color (white)
diamond, yet if it is poorly cut, it will be dull and lifeless.
4. The Mounting
Metal - This is basically a matter of personal preference and
what looks best on you. Yellow gold is classic and works best
for a solitaire engagement ring. Yellow gold is also better for
mounting diamonds with a lower color grade (yellowish tint), because
the yellow from the diamond blends into the setting. White gold
and Platinum give a modern look and work best with three stone
rings. Be sure to choose a diamond with a high color grade, otherwise
the white mounting will negatively emphasize a yellowish diamond.
5. The Online
Engagement Ring Builder - The most fun part of buying a diamond
online is being able to build your own ring. Choose a diamond
and a setting, then e-mail it to your fiancé. Even if he
doesn't buy it online, he will know exactly what style to look
for when he goes shopping. No surprises, and everyone is happy!
hundreds of diamond and jewelry web sites out there, but my advice
is to stick with the leaders in the field. On their sites, you can browse thousands of diamonds as well as build your own engagement ring and see how different settings look with different shape diamonds. They both have highly knowledgeable and very friendly customer
service staff that can answer questions about diamonds and settings,
and offer a no risk 100% guarantee and return policy.
is designed to give consumers an overview of diamond terminology,
the "4 C's", shapes of diamonds and explain diamond grading
reports. We also have
a searchable database of diamond prices from leading online jewelers.