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Your Guide to Engagement Rings

Your Guide to Engagement Rings

You're ready to pop the question, now you just need the ring. With the vast array of options, how's a guy supposed to choose? Don't panic, we’ll step you through the process (and nudge you whenever you start to hyperventilate). In the end, we want to make sure you get the most for your money--a ring that will leave her breathless, while leaving your budget intact. We’ll run through the steps first, and then introduce you to Amazon’s Create Your Own Ring tool to take you the rest of the way.

Set your budget
How much should you spend? The old "three months’ salary" advice may be a useful starting point, but it’s not a hard-and-fast rule. You can spend less and still find a terrific ring, or you can spend more and splurge on size or quality. The only "correct" amount to spend is the amount that fits your budget. With our enormous inventory, Amazon can help you find a beautiful ring at any price point. Create your own ring or shop pre-set engagement rings.

Know her style
The best way to find out what she likes is to ask her. Better yet, look at rings together. If you want the ring to be a total surprise, though, you’ll need to do a little sleuthing. Pay close attention to her style. Check out the jewelry she wears. Is it traditional? Romantic? Modern? Practical? Does she like showier pieces, or more subtle styles? What color of metal does she usually wear—white or yellow?

Don’t be afraid to enlist her friends and relatives to help. Ask her mom, her sister, or her best friend for advice (but first, make sure they can keep a secret).

Choose the setting
The diamond you choose will be mounted in a ring, which is called the setting. That setting can be simple, or elaborate. It can hold the diamond flush with the band, or raise it high above it. It can highlight the diamond in a simple way, or it can shimmer with accent stones or fancy metalwork. Again, knowing her style will help you choose the right setting. Looking for something tried-and-true? Some of the most popular and classic diamond settings are the solitaire, the cathedral, the three-stone, and the channel setting.

Consider her hand size when you choose the setting. A broader band will balance long, slender fingers, while something more petite will complement a smaller hand. For a flattering result, look for a diamond and setting that are proportionate to her ring size.

When you choose the setting, you’ll also need to choose the metal: White gold or yellow? Fourteen karat? Eighteen karat? Or platinum? See our Precious Metals Guide for help.

Choose a diamond shape
We're talking overall geometry of the diamond here. By far, the most preferred diamond shape is round-brilliant. With its 360 degree symmetry, it gives off the most sparkle. Princess shapes are the second most popular choice, with their clean square lines, modern look, and beautiful sparkle. Other choices include the regal-looking marquise (which has the advantage of lengthening the finger), the classic emerald cut, and the radiant cut (a blend of emerald and round-brilliant). The oval diamond is an elongated variation of the popular round brilliant, while the asscher diamond resembles an emerald cut, but with a squared shape and unique blocked corners. Other fancy shapes, such as pear, heart, and cushion, round out the list of possibilities.

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