Buying an engagement ring is something the grand majority of people do only once. However, even though engagement ring shopping is a once in a lifetime event, there are plenty of things people wish they had known from the start. Additionally, men who maybe didn’t do a great job the first time often like to upgrade the diamond later. This is often done during a significant anniversary or as a birthday present. Whether you are just starting engagement ring shopping or are looking to amend your mistakes by upgrading, this list is for you.
Engagement Ring Shopping List
- Figure out what you can actually afford, then stick to your budget. One of the biggest mistakes people make is going over budget and then resenting the debt. If you are in a bind, you can always look into financing options to help extend your engagement ring budget.
- Learn EVERYTHING about diamonds. When many shoppers first start looking at engagement rings, they are completely clueless to the four c’s. Study up on diamond education to make sure that you are getting a high quality diamond without overpaying.
- Know your diamond shapes. If your girlfriend is talking about princess cut diamonds and you have no idea what that means, you’re going to have a tough time when shopping. The first thing to know is “princess cut” refers to the diamond shape.
- Different settings are better for different reasons. Engagement rings are available in a wide range of styles, and each one will look best with a certain diamond shape and with certain metals.
- One carat diamonds can vary widely in price. This is another reason it is so important to follow #2 and learn about diamonds. If the only thing you know is that she wants a 1 carat diamond, you could be spending anywhere between $1,000 and $15,000 on the stone. The other factors matter!
- 14k vs 18k. Just like the varieties in diamonds themselves, engagement ring metals also have different categories. 14k gold will not be as pure as 18k gold, but the stronger metal will be more durable. It’s important to know the difference.
Designing your own engagement ring is not more expensive. While many men begin their ring shopping by looking at existing rings, it is only much later than they find out about custom rings. In many cases, creating a custom engagement ring from scratch will give you exactly what you want at a lower cost.
- Think about matching wedding bands. It may seem crazy to think about wedding rings before proposing, but its not. Many women prefer their wedding ring and engagement ring to match. It may help to narrow down the potential list of rings by checking out matched sets.
- You can always upgrade the diamond. Even if you plan your budget perfectly you may not be able to afford the size diamond you really want. Remember, there is always the opportunity to upgrade the size of the diamond later.
- Match her personality, not her shoes. The most important thing to remember is an engagement ring should match her as a person. While she may be into trendy and chic looks now, an engagement ring is a purchase that lasts a lifetime. Seek a ring that compliments her spirit, and you won’t ever have to worry about it going out of style.