Tips for Buying a Diamond Engagement Ring
So you're ready to propose. But are you ready to buy the diamond ring? Getting the right engagement ring is a very important step to arranging the perfect proposal. These days, many couples are willing to pick out the engagement ring together. But if you're going for the most dramatic impact possible, you'll want to keep it a surprise. Here are a few tips for getting the ring just right.
Take her shopping. Next time you go to the mall with your girlfriend, steer her toward a jewelry store. If this is out-of-the-ordinary behavior for you, tell her you're looking for a new watch–but spend some time checking out the diamond engagement rings. Most women love to look at jewelry, even when they're not expecting to buy. Engage her in conversation about the rings. Notice the styles she likes and which rings she looks at the longest.
Check out her style. Does your girlfriend love flash and attention? Then a round brilliant cut might be just the thing–these have the most sparkle and fire. If she's the type who likes to be unique, consider a shape that's not common in engagement rings–something like an oval, marquise, or heart. Women who love unique looks will sometimes prefer colored diamonds, as well–but pick a color that you know she loves. If she loves antique jewelry, she might prefer a rose cut. If she prefers a classic, elegant look rather than a lot of flash, an emerald cut might be more her style. Look at the jewelry she wears already. Pay particular attention to color. If she never wears gold, get her a white gold or platinum ring.
Pick a style that's right for her hands. The smaller a woman's hands, the bigger a diamond will look on her. Women with large hands and long fingers might be able to carry off a 3-carat diamond, but it will overwhelm a woman with petite hands. Longer diamond shapes, such as oval and marquise, can make short fingers look longer and sleeker–but these diamonds should be kept petite. If they're too long, they can make her fingers look shorter. Generally speaking, if she's small and delicate, pick a delicate design and a smaller diamond. If she's more robust, she can pull off a thicker band and a bolder style–as well as a bigger diamond, if that's her taste and finances permit.
Talk to friends and family. Ask around to see if her friends and family know her opinions on engagement rings. A sister or best friend might be able to give you some useful insight.
Know her lifestyle. Is she active? Is she used to wearing large jewelry, particularly on her fingers? For active women who aren't used to such jewelry, a ring that sticks out too much can get caught on things, knock against things, and get in her way. Pick a diamond ring in a sleeker style if that will fit her lifestyle better.
Know her ring size. Picture it–you arrange the perfect setting, you kneel, take out your little black velvet box, and you ask her to marry you–and she accepts! The ring is beautiful, she loves it, she tries to put it on–and it doesn't fit. To avoid such a scenario, it's a good idea to know her ring size when you buy a ring, so you can get it sized appropriately. Try to get a friend or family member to help you get your hands on one of her other rings so you can use it to size the engagement ring.
Design your own. After reading this guide, and our pages on diamond quality (including the various tradeoffs size, color, clarity, cut and shape have on price), chances are you are want to create your own engagement ring to get it perfect and unique. Fortunately, the Internet jewelers are the perfect place to turn for this unique opportunity. For example, BlueNile.com allows you to "build your own", Mondera.com gives you the ability to "design your own engagement ring" and you can make your own at Diamond.com, since they give you the option to select the loose diamond and setting you want to create a unique design.
Buying a diamond engagement ring is a crucial step toward marrying the woman of your dreams. Follow these simple tips, and you're likely to get a ring she loves–and a positive response!
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