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Finding The Right Engagement Ring, A Woman's Guide

Updated on August 27, 2016

An engagement ring is one piece of jewellery that you will probably live with all your life – if you’re lucky. So unless you’re blessed with an incredibly romantic partner who goes out, chooses the ring, sets up a great backdrop for a proposal and drops down on one knee to do it, you will, in all probability, be taken along to the jeweller to make your choice. Now this is when you need to come down from Cloud Nine and let a bit of practical thinking into your decision. After all,that engagement ring is going to be on your finger, day after day, week after week,month after month and year after year. You need to have something you can connect with, feel at one with.

Choosing your Diamond

The choice of the stone at the centre is up to you. There are people who are unconventional and might want sapphires, rubies or emeralds. However, most women still prefer to be given a diamond – and a diamond in a traditional setting at that. Some things really don’t ever go out of style and the Tiffany’s classic six prong setting is still the most popular. When it comes to the diamond, remember the 4 Cs. That stands for Colour, Cut, Clarity and Carat. If you don’t know enough, ask the jeweller about it.

Most men spend in the region of $2000 to $3000 for an engagement ring. While the average weight in the US is around 1 carat, in Europe it is generally 0.3 carats. So maybe you should ask to see diamonds in that price and carat range.


I asked Ed Searancke of Samara James, London what else a woman should look for when it comes to choosing a diamond engagement ring and this is what he had to say: “A Forevermark today is a good indicator that the diamond is of good quality.” This is an icon that is inscribed on the diamonds that pass a stringent grading test in the DeBeers labs that are located in Antwerp, Belgium and Maidenhead, UK. All Forevermark diamonds come with detailed reports and it just makes a woman feel that much more secure about the diamond she is buying.

The other thing to look for is how the colour of the diamond appears in different lighting. The factor of fluorescence tends to make a diamond change its hue when the lighting is different. Most jewellers guide you when it comes to this so it would be a good thing to ask.

Finally, Ed reminded me that it would be great if every diamond buyer insisted on conflict-free diamonds. Many jewellers like him make sure that they stock only conflict-free diamonds but it does help when customers insist on it. This is one way of ensuring that blood diamonds don’t come into the diamond supply stream.


The Kimberley Process Certification Scheme – how self regulation is working

Way back at the turn of the century, there was a move to adopt a way to certify rough diamonds. In 2003, KPCS or the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme came into being. Countries and companies can be a part of the scheme. What it does is this: every diamond that it certifies must definitely have not been a blood diamond – remember the movie? With these diamonds not being allowed into the legitimate mainstream, it means drying up of the money that goes to fund conflicts in many of the diamond-mining and diamond-processing areas. In order to facilitate compliance with the parameters that have been set, the KPCS have a number of very advanced tools. In 5 years, the incidence of wars in Africa especially, has lessened considerably. Fewer and fewer blood diamonds are finding their way into jewellery retailer stores and what’s really admirable is the fact that it has all been done with self regulation and the will to root out this evil.

An engagement ring is a symbol of love. If it’s going to stay on your finger for years, don’t just pick the first one you fancy – it has to be much more than an impulse purchase. Choose right and many years from now, you’ll still be glad you chose the ring you did!


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    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 7 years ago from India

      Yes, Isabelle - there's nothing quite like a diamond, is there?

    • Isabelle22 profile image

      Isabelle22 7 years ago from Somewhere on the coastline

      Oh I adore beautiful jewelery. I love those rings, if only...sigh.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Thanks so much for reading Enelle - I do hope these tips are useful.

    • Enelle Lamb profile image

      Enelle Lamb 8 years ago from Canada's 'California'

      When I go shopping (and luckily I will be ;)) I will remember your tips - thanks so much for sharing these with us.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Thank you diamond man - you are obviously an expert when it comes to diamonds :)

    • diamond man profile image

      diamond man 8 years ago

      The four C's are very important and the cut is the most important of them all. Never compromise on the cut. Thats for sure.

      Nice Hub Btw

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 9 years ago from India

      Now that's being sensible! But I agree - even tho I'm not a jewellery person, I love the feel of diamonds in an engagement ring!

    • Sara Algoe profile image

      Sara Algoe 9 years ago from Phoenix, Ariz

      Great Hub

      My boyfriend wanted to give me a diamond ring, but as a pro accountant i advised him to buy equal valued Gold stuff coz just in case i lose one, ill have another one.

      But i have to admit that nothing comes even close to diamond.

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 9 years ago from India

      Thank you Laila - glad you liked it!

    • Laila Rajaratnam profile image

      Laila Rajaratnam 9 years ago from India

      Thanks!wonderful hub!

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 9 years ago from India

      Wow! I love jewellery - not to wear but I'm fascinated by the intricate designs and the energies gemstones radiate.

    • BrainFire profile image

      BrainFire 9 years ago from The Island

      Hi Shalini:

      My Mom is a Jeweler of 37 years, and we love

      Nice hub, very good source to follow as a guide of what to do when buying.

      I bet my Mom would say the same thing. :)

      She made me a special little "Girl" charm when my daughter was born, with 27 Diamonds for her Date of Birth. I haven't taken it off in 12 years. Jewelry in our family is literally an extension of our bodies. We never take any of it

      Thanks for all your great hubs!

      Smiles from the Island :)

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 9 years ago from India

      You're welcome Ryan - enjoyed doing it! Here's to you finding a diamond of the first water :)

    • Ryan Hupfer profile image

      Ryan Hupfer 9 years ago from San Francisco, CA

      Oh Tiffanys...the girlfriend has taken me there several times. :) Thanks for answering my Request!

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 9 years ago from India

      Thank you Sally's Trove - great link and so well explained.

    • Sally's Trove profile image

      Sherri 9 years ago from Southeastern Pennsylvania

      This is a very interesting Hub, Shalini. I didn't know about KPCS, so I went to their website, which is well-written and informative. The FAQs page is especially helpful for the consumer, since it gives you a list of questions to ask your jeweler to find out if your jeweler can prove he's not selling conflict diamonds. Here's the link to the FAQs page:

      Thumbs up!