Engagement Rings: Everything You Need To Know

Engagement rings have been a romantic tradition for hundreds of years. Not only is it a swoon-worthy piece of bling, but a declaration of commitment! Choosing an engagement ring is a very important decision. You need to consider your partner’s unique tastes, the size of the ring, your budget, the metal and the stone.

1. The Importance of Engagement Rings

Couple holding hands with engagement ring on finger

More rings are bought to mark an engagement than any other occasion. It is a globally recognized symbol of love and devotion. Wearing an engagement ring is a very clear message that you are off the dating market. But it is more than just an accessory that shows you are going to get married. An engagement ring symbolizes a lifelong promise – that you are dedicating your life and love to another human, eternally. Many believe that the ring was used to symbolize this because it has no beginning and no end – it is eternal. Often the engagement ring is more elaborate and grandiose when compared to the wedding ring.

The most popular engagement ring is usually a diamond ring, which is also very symbolic. (Not just because it is a girl’s best friend.) The hardiness of a diamond represents endurance and longevity.

2. Different Types of Ring Metals

You have a wonderful selection of ring metals to choose from! What are my options, you ask?

  • Platinum: a Rare, white metal known for its strength and usually 95% pure! It is very durable and hypoallergenic.
  • Yellow Gold/White Gold: Yellow gold gets combined with different metal alloys for added strength and is usually 70-75% pure. It is widely available and therefore a little less expensive than platinum.
  • Rose Gold: Rose gold gets its rosy tone when a copper alloy is added to gold. The pink hue also represents love and looks great against all skin tones.
  • Palladium: This silver-grey metal is often used as an alloy in white gold and is just as durable! The metal is lower density so it’s a lot less expensive.
  • Titanium: The cool, grey metal is unbreakable but almost as weightless as aluminium! This makes it a popular choice for men who are not used to wearing a ring. It also comes in a polished black.
How to Figure Out What Ring She Wants Without Asking:

Oe.. this one is easy! Every girl has a Pinterest board with her dream wedding on (dream wedding dresses, flowers, rings etc.), all you need to do is spy on her Pinterest board and we’ll guarantee you will find beautiful Wedding Rings she loves.

3. Must it be a diamond ring?

Rose Gold engagement ring and Silver engagement ring in a ring box

While the ring as a promise is a thousand-year-old tradition, the diamond was only added in the middle 1900’s when the world got flooded with diamonds from South Africa. In 1947 a copywriter penned the slogan: “A diamond is forever”, which changed the engagement ring industry forever! So NO, it doesn’t have to be a diamond at all! The groom will know his bride well enough to know what she would like. There are a lot of options for engagement rings.

Choosing the type of ring is completely reliant on what your significant other prefers! Some people are attracted to classic styles, while others prefer something unique. The various stones carry different meanings, so if you are inclined to go for something different, you could choose a gem with a significant meaning.

If you are looking for something completely different there are plenty of jewellers who can custom make a ring for you! There are no limitations to what your ring could be. Trust us, the internet is full of unique engagement rings, so think outside the box!

If you are still set on a diamond ring but still prefer something unique and creative, you could opt for a Polki Diamond Ring – a ring featuring a natural, uncut diamond.

Different Gemstones for Engagement Rings:
  • Moissanite:  The primary distinction between moissanite and diamonds lies in their brilliance, with moissanite exhibiting greater brilliance than diamonds. It boasts more fire and brilliance than any other gemstone, resulting in a heightened sparkle. Due to its double refractive nature, moissanite is cut differently from diamonds to maximize its sparkle. A less expensive option and impossible to see the difference!
  • Cubic Zirconia: A well-liked diamond substitute, offers affordability, conflict-free sourcing, and a genuine diamond-like appearance. Nevertheless, its drawback lies in reduced durability; with regular use, it tends to lose its shine and sparkle within a few years.
  • Tanzanite: A brilliantly blue and violet mineral that is very rare but extremely popular!
  • Pearl: The pearl has made a comeback and has a vintage look.
  • Other precious stones like rubies and sapphires are also popular.

Choosing the right stone and colour ultimately depends on what your significant other gravitates towards. Will their heart melt over and over again when admiring their ring?

Gemstone Shapes and Cuts:

Wedding rings

4. On which hand does the engagement ring go?

Traditionally the engagement ring is worn on the fourth finger of the left hand also known as the ring finger. Upon marriage, both the wedding band and engagement ring will be worn on the same finger. However, the wedding band is traditionally placed first, followed by the engagement ring.

In some traditions, the groom will remove the engagement ring, place it on her right hand and put the wedding band on her left hand’s ring finger. The bride would then move both rings to her left hand after the wedding.

Across various cultures, the tradition emerged of wearing wedding rings on the fourth finger of the left hand. This choice was rooted in the belief that a vein in this finger led directly to the heart, which was universally regarded as the emotional core of the body. Consequently, this vein came to be known as the “Vena Amoris”, which translates to the “Vein of Love”.

5. How do I get to know my fiancé’s ring size?

This is super important! Imagine proposing in the most romantic way and then… awkward silence… the ring does not fit! The easiest way to find out what your Girlfriend’s ring size is is to “borrow” one of her rings that she usually wears or ask one of her friends for help. Let a jeweller measure it for you – a service normally offered for free. Alternatively, you can measure the ring size yourself at home.

You can also fit her ring on your pinky finger to guess the size. Mark the position on your finger that it gets “stuck” and then go to a jeweller to find out what ring size that position on your finger represents. Another great trick is to get her mom or best friend involved. Just make 100% sure that Mom or bestie can keep a secret! Then ask them to go do some unassuming “ring browsing” together.  In this way, Mom or bestie can suggest fitting on rings and from there on the discussion can lead to ring sizes YAY!

At the end of the day, if it doesn’t fit, you don’t have to worry too much – you can always have it resized!

Watch this video to see how wedding ring styles have changed over the last 100 years:

6. How much should you spend on an engagement ring?

Traditionally, many men have considered spending about a month’s salary when budgeting for an engagement ring. However, it’s important to remember that the value of a promise cannot be quantified by its price tag. Ultimately, the decision about how much to spend should be based on what feels right to you and what is financially feasible.

A beautifully designed ring will be loved regardless of the price or size of the stone! And you will be surprised that a custom-made ring can often cost less than some of the rings available in store. Remember to take into consideration your significant other’s preference. Have fun with this affordability calculator (even though it is in dollars, you will get the idea!) If you need a pro to talk to, contact one of the ring designers in the Pink Book online directory.

7. Perfect Proposal Ideas

Now that you have the ring, you must create the perfect environment to pop the question! Here are some tips to pull off the perfect proposal. If you are not the creative type and you need some ideas on how to propose, don’t worry, we have you covered. Have a look at our blog for some Unique Engagement Ideas.

A few additional tips: 

  • Unless you know for sure that she is going to say yes, don’t ask her in front of a big group of people or a restaurant full of strangers!
  • You must always make sure that the setting is intimate and that your partner is comfortable and relaxed. Sometimes keeping it simple and sweet is the best!
  • Tailor the moment around what she likes and enjoys! If she is scared of heights – better avoid mountains!
  • You will know what your partner would like to remember about this evening! Make it memorable!
  • Be careful of hiding the ring in food, proposing on sand or proposing on bridges over water – many rings have gone missing due to the newly engaged couple nervously fumbling!
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