How to Choose an Engagement Ring on a Budget
Don't be fooled by the rocks that I've got, you too can get an engagement ring on a budget with these tips!
One of the most searched questions when it comes to engagement rings is how to bag yourself an expensive-looking jewel without breaking the bank and we're here to quell those pre-proposal nerves with tips on how to impress the other half on a budget.
We've gathered advice from Robert Cuomo, expert in the jewellery world and Managing Director of Hatton Jewellers, to help you all out.
Their survey revealed half of Brits buy an engagement ring spontaneously and a third are looking to spend under £1500 on the special ring, so well done for doing your research first and coming to the experts on how to get the dream rock whilst meeting your budget!
Mixed Engagement Rings, Hatton Jewellers
The bigger the diamond, the more expensive the ring appears. So, which diamond shape does Cuomo recommend for a big diamond on a small budget? He says, "a brilliant cut diamond would be the classic choice" for a show-stopping engagement ring but you could also opt for "pear, oval and emerald" as these shapes all appear the biggest when compared to other rings at the same carat weight.
Oval cut rings seem to be trending for 2023 engagements as they offer something a bit different whilst ticking the classic and timeless box, so is something to keep in mind while you ring hunt.
Princess Cut Engagement Ring, Hatton Jewellers
If you're looking for sparkle and shine from your ring, then Robert Cuomo has the best advice. To get your gem to reflect the most light, and therefore sparkle, he advises going for a "4 claw high setting on the stone" as this provides "enough security but (is) less intrusive with letting light refract through the stone".
Sparkle immediately adds value to your ring choice, so choose a 4 claw ring setting to add some shine and help reduce that budget.
Before you pop the question, consider how you can save some pennies by choosing an affordable but premium-looking metal with Cuomo's advice.
To meet your budget while ring shopping, it's helpful to know that "9ct white gold looks the same as 18ct white gold and looks similar to platinum", which makes it an "affordable yet unique choice" for Cuomo. By making this decision you can get the expensive look without breaking the bank.
For a sensitive budget, "you can have a cluster of small stones to make it appear as one larger stone, which would make it a much more affordable option". Smaller stones are cheaper of course, but one large stone may have the big romantic appeal you're looking for, it's something to consider.
The 4C's of Diamond Quality
There are 4 C's to look out for when it comes to shopping for diamonds and they are: cut, colour, carat and clarity. But which of these is most important when you're searching for an expensive-looking diamond ring?
Robert Cuomo stresses the importance of the cut of the diamond "because the cut determines the amount of sparkle the ring will generate" and therefore gives you the expensive look. He argues that "you could have the best colour and clarity but without a well-proportioned cut the diamond will not sparkle as brightly".
So, when you're ring shopping, remember that C for cut is a great way to get an expensive-looking diamond that sparkles and shines whilst still meeting your budget!
You can find out more about diamonds in the Hatton Jewellers Diamond Guide.
If you want more advice on how to keep the costs down for your big day, check out our helpful article on How to Stick to Your Wedding Budget.
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