An engagement ring is for life and may be one of the most expensive pieces of jewellery you own so it makes sense to put some thought into this choice. There are hundreds of different styles of diamond rings to choose from and although much will depend on your budget there is something to suit every taste and wallet out there.
If you are buying a ring for your fiancee as a surprise then try going through the steps below with her best friend. It may help to prevent you buying her a ring she doesn't really like.
Things You Will NeedA budget
Step 1Consider your personal style. An engagement ring is worn every day for the rest of your life (or marriage!) and you want to find something which will suit your dress style and go with your other jewellery. If you mostly wear silver or white gold then a yellow gold ring may look a bit odd. If you only wear yellow gold jewellery then a platinum diamond ring may not be the best option. Look through magazines for inspiration. Consider how you will feel about your diamond ring in 10, 20 and 30 years.
Step 2Set your own budget. Do not feel you have to conform to other people's expectations on how much an engagement ring should cost. Set a price which suits your circumstances.
If you are on a tight budget and are also planning your wedding one point to remember is that you will wear your diamond ring every day and your wedding dress just once. It may be worth getting a slightly cheaper dress and putting the money towards the ring.
Step 3Educate yourself about diamonds. Diamonds are judged on a number of factors usually known as the four Cs.
The cut of the diamond - how much it sparkles
The size of the stone - known as the carat
The color of the stone, graded from D to Z
The clarity of the stone, how flawless it is
And don't forget the shape of the diamond - anything from round to pear to heart shapes are possible.
Each of these considerations affects how much a diamond costs. If you want a huge diamond ring then you may have to compromise on the color and clarity.