So you’re getting ready to pop the question. Congrats! Whether you shop together or fly solo, looking for the perfect engagement ring has the potential to be as nerve wracking as it is exciting. After all, the ring is a symbol of your devotion to one another, and you want it to be as singular and superb as the love you share.
To keep things simple, we’ve created this list of important tips and features to look for in engagement rings so you can make the purchase of a lifetime — and have fun doing it.
Top 7 Features to Look For in an Engagement Rings
Engagement rings symbolize the love, beauty, and commitment two people make to each other. Keep an eye out for these features as you look for a diamond engagement ring to win the heart of your beloved forever.
1. Know the 4Cs
The first tip on our list is to familiarize yourself with the 4Cs. The 4Cs are color, cut, clarity, and weight, and they act as the global standard for grading diamonds.
Color: Diamond color is rated from D to Z. D represents colorless diamonds, which are rarer than colored diamonds. The color scale increases up to Z, which represents light yellow or brown diamonds.
Cut: The cut of a diamond represents the sparkle, fire, and brilliance the stone emits as it reflects light.
Clarity: Clarity is the presence of microscopic imperfections, called inclusions, in the diamond. Diamonds with fewer inclusions have higher clarity ratings.
Carat: Carat is a unit of measurement for the weight of a diamond, not the size. The price of a diamond generally increases with a larger carat weight.
2. Cut Quality is Queen
Pay special attention to cut quality when you look for an engagement ring. The cut of your diamond jewelry is a real game changer, and it can get you more sparkle for your spend if you’re on a budget. A good cut quality can make imperfections and inclusions less noticeable, and it can improve the way a diamond’s facets interact with light.
3. Find the GIA Rating
Ask for a GIA rating report when you’ve landed on a diamond you love. The Gemological Institute of America, or GIA, offers diamond grading services that cover a ton of information, but focus on the 4Cs to get an initial assessment of the diamond’s quality.
4. Pick Your Shape and Settings
Shape is how the diamond looks from the top — round, pear, and oval are all examples of popular diamond shapes. The setting is what holds the diamond in place, highlights the diamond's beauty, and protects it from damage. Prong, bezel, and halo settings are fashionable favorites. Have an idea of what shape and setting you or your bride-to-be want before you start ring shopping.
5. Brush Up on Precious Metals
Yellow gold is a timeless classic for engagement ring bands, but white gold and silver are also common picks. In recent years, rose gold has experienced an upswing in popularity, and it makes for a unique, romantic aesthetic. Platinum is a great choice due to its extreme durability. When you choose a metal, consider the lifestyle of the person you’re buying for, their personal style, and the color of any accent stones you choose for the ring.
6. Choose a Reputable Jewelry Seller
Do some digging to find a reputable jewelry seller. Ask friends and family about sellers they’ve had a good experience with, and look for jewelers who want to help you find the best diamond within your budget.
It’s a good idea to find out what the store's return policy is — if your partner prefers something a little different, you want to be able to exchange or return the stone. Inter-Continental Jewelers has a 30-day return policy — simply return your jewelry for a full refund, no questions asked.
7. Maximize Your Engagement Ring Budget
There’s no “right” amount to spend when shopping for a diamond engagement ring. Consider diamonds with a G color grade — they’re still colorless, and a good deal less expensive than D grade diamonds.
Lab grown diamonds are a fantastic alternative to natural diamonds if you’re set on getting a diamond with a large carat weight or D color grade. Lab grown diamonds are physically, chemically, and optically identical to natural diamonds, only more affordable because no mining process is involved in their creation.
Find the Perfect Engagement Ring in Houston, TX
Celebrate life’s milestones with a gorgeous diamond engagement ring from Inter-Continental Jewelers. We’re your premier jeweler for high-quality, unique engagement rings in Houston. Contact us to arrange a personalized shopping experience and enjoy one-on-one guidance from our passionate, knowledgeable staff.