When a girl gets engaged, the first thing all her friends want to know about is the ring. An engagement ring is an important symbol of a couple’s commitment to one another, but it’s also an important accessory that a woman will wear for the rest of her life.
Some grooms may have a clear idea of the type of ring they want to surprise their bride-to-be with, often times they will look to her for hints…. perhaps a passing comment while window-shopping or a pin on Pinterest—some guys need all the help they can get! On the other hand, many couples discuss marriage well before the proposal, and the bride’s ring preference may be part of the conversation.
Either way, it’s important for the future bride to be aware of the types of engagement rings available, so she can communicate (however subtly!) what type of ring fits her personal taste.
Here is a primer to help you learn about the different types of engagement rings so you can make the best choice for your needs and budget.
Solitaire Engagement Rings
One of the most popular settings for an engagement ring, solitaires are a single stone set upon the band. While this is a simple classic, it can be surprisingly versatile. The size of the stone doesn’t matter – a smaller stone can be enhanced by a slimmer band – so the sky is the limit in terms of design and cut. The choice of stone is also versatile, being based on taste and budget. In fact, solitaire rings are easiest on the budget as well, because they are simple, with fewer variables.
Vintage Engagement Rings
Antique rings are fantastic options for those with a taste for history and romance. At Brilliance, we advocate going with new, vintage-inspired rings to ensure that your vintage engagement ring diamond is conflict free, as antique diamonds cannot be verified by the Kimberly Process. Don’t worry about that narrowing your options—there are countless rings that borrow the beautiful aesthetics of bygone years. If vintage is for you, do a little research into the different looks of different eras… are you a sleek, architectural Art Deco kind of girl, or do you prefer the extravagant intricacy of Edwardian engagement rings?
Halo Engagement Rings
Halo engagement rings are named after the “halo” or circle of small stones that circle the center stone on a ring. Halos can come in many different forms—round, square, double, drop, etc—but their main benefit is that they add extra brilliance to a ring, and make the center stone look larger. Depending on the size and quality of the halo stones, this can be a great option for budget-conscious brides.
For an eye-catching engagement ring, add gemstones to the mix—a halo of romantic rubies accenting a diamond, or a line of petite diamonds circling around a beautiful blue sapphire. Halo rings can also be crafted with a unique twist, such as…
- A halo surrounding a non-traditional diamond cut shape
- A flower-inspired design (pictured above)
- A mixed-metal look
Three-Stone Engagement Rings
When just one stone won’t suffice, a three-stone setting allows for a little versatility. This is a common setting that includes a central stone flanked by two side stones. These stones can be the same size or slightly smaller, diamonds or gemstones—whatever the bride’s choice.
What makes the three-stone truly special, however, isn’t just it’s style, it’s the symbolism. Each stone represents the past, present, and future of a relationship, making it a beautiful romantic gesture.
Side Stone Engagement Rings
Not every side stone engagement ring is a three-stone ring. Many rings feature more than three side stones, or use diamonds and gemstones as accents in settings that don’t fit the traditional three-stone mold, particularly vintage gemstone and custom ring designs. However they’re used, side stones are a great way to add personality to a ring.
Additional stones make a ring sparkle and stand out, but beware that the more side stones you have, the more at risk they are to come loose—especially if you’re very active and use your hands a lot at work or at home. Your lifestyle is often just as important to choosing a ring as your fashion sense!
Eternity Band Engagement Rings
Many modern engagement rings feature small diamonds or gemstones embedded in the band of the ring. If these small stones circle the entire length of the band, it is known as an eternity band. “Eternity rings” first appeared as a popular gift for an anniversary and did not feature a center stone at all, but the striking beauty of these gem-encrusted bands has caught the eyes of couples around the world.
An eternity band symbolizes endless commitment, which is perhaps why they have come into fashion for engagement rings. Since the amount of diamonds needed for an eternity band makes for a hefty price tag, the half-eternity engagement ring is the more affordable (and more popular) option.
Getting engaged is exciting, and the bride-to-be deserves the best ring she can get—and the ring she wants most. Knowing what you want ahead of time can ensure that happens, and researching types of engagement rings can give you ideas you may not have thought of before! Whether your go for something traditional, modern, or eclectic, the best engagement ring is the one given and received with love.