3 tips to select the perfect engagement ring

November 26, 2014

If the idea of finding the perfect ring has you panicked, fear not. Before you pop the question to the love of your life, here are three key questions to ask as you search for the perfect engagement ring.

3 tips to select the perfect engagement ring

Before you go to the store

If you’re aiming for a surprise engagement, then you’ll have to do some planning. Before making the trip to the store to look for the perfect engagement ring, take some time to reflect on the tastes of your sweetheart.

  • Does he or she prefer discrete or flashy jewellery?
  • What about your partner’s personality, lifestyle and physical build?

If your investigating doesn’t get you far, talk to your sweetheart’s siblings or best friend to get some inspiration.

Name your price

The old adage is to spend two months’ salary on an engagement or wedding ring, but this may not ring true for everyone.

  • You know your partner better than anyone, so if the traditional approach is sure to win his or her heart, go ahead and spend as much as possible for the engagement ring.
  • Forking over two months of pay simply isn’t practical or suiting of every couple.
  • Perhaps you and your partner would prefer a wild honeymoon in Fiji or a lavish wedding and reception with hundreds of friends and family. Budgeting a wedding starts early, even before you choose a ring!

Once you're in the store, there are three important things you'll need to know to pick the perfect ring:

1. Which precious metal does your fiancé want?

There are four most commonly used precious metals when it comes to engagement rings:

Yellow and white gold: Gold is measured in karats.

  • Pure gold is 24 karat, while gold alloys are less.
  • The karat value is stamped on the inside of the ring with a “K” or “kt”.
  • Gold jewellery is the classic choice for engagement and wedding rings, and is often less expensive than platinum options.

Sterling silver: Sterling silver jewellery is marked with the stamp “925”.

  • Pure silver is too soft to produce jewellery that will last a lifetime, so it is often alloyed with copper and other material to produce sterling silver.
  • Silver jewellery is the affordable choice for many couples.
  • Much less expensive than gold or platinum jewellery, sterling silver can help budget-conscious lovebirds express their devotion without emptying their bank accounts.
  • Due to its lower price, more designers work with sterling silver, allowing couples to sample a wide range of styles to find something that matches their aesthetic perfectly.

Platinum: Often considered more precious than gold, this material closely resembles white gold, but it will not fade into a soft yellow colour as white gold sometimes does.

  • One of platinum jewellery’s main benefits is durability.
  • Over time, the prongs of a platinum ring will hold a stone tightly, more reliably than gold alternatives.
  • However, it is more likely to scratch throughout the years than gold options.

Tungsten: Tungsten carbide bands are becoming increasingly popular choices for couples tying the knot.

  • Tungsten bands cannot be resized, meaning it’s critical to seek a professional jeweller with experience working with tungsten.
  • Some tungsten contains cobalt, but you’ll want to choose tungsten jewellery that includes a nickel alloy.
  • It will cost a little more, but its colour won’t fade over time or turn your fingers brown.

Metal properties:

In addition to price, precious metals differ in the following properties, which your jeweller will be able to help you understand:

  • Durability
  • Luster
  • Resistance to tarnishing
  • Weight
  • Hypoallergenic properties

2. Which stone does your fiancé want?

The stone you decide on largely depends upon your partner's taste.

  • Diamond's are, of course, the most popular choice for an engagement ring, but there are other beautiful choices such as:
  • Ruby
  • Sapphire
  • Emerald

While a diamond's value is mainly determined by its carat value, which may be represented by the abbreviation “ct.”, the quality of a diamond also depends on its purity and colour.


Once you've decided on the perfect stone, you'll want to be sure match it with the best shape. Each stone can be cut in many different ways:

  • Round
  • Oval
  • Princess (square-shaped)
  • Marquise (elongated)
  • Pear
  • Heart
  • Trillion (triangle-shaped)

3. Which design does your fiancé want?

There are several different ring designs to consider:

  • Solitaire: A single stone set in the centre of the ring.
  • Trinity: Three stones set in the centre.
  • Eternity: A ring set with small stones all along its circumference.
  • Semi-eternity: A ring set with small stones along half its circumference.
  • Flat band: A ring that is flat on top, often with no other design.

If your fiancé has a piece of jewellery that is meaningful to them or has a specific design in mind, the pros can refit jewellery, repurpose heirlooms or design an engagement ring that is prefect for them.

Looking to the future

Once you know the basics about precious metals, their strengths and weaknesses and their price points, you can make an informed decision and find the perfect engagement ring.

  • The trick is to find something that expresses the love you feel perfectly, to find something your partner will wear for the rest of his or her life proudly. Finding the perfect engagement ring is just the first step to a long life together.

Picking out the perfect engagement ring can be overwhelming, but if you go out with a basic understanding of what’s on display, it will help you to pick the ring that will make your true love jump for joy!

The material on this website is provided for entertainment, informational and educational purposes only and should never act as a substitute to the advice of an applicable professional. Use of this website is subject to our terms of use and privacy policy.
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