How to Pick the Perfect Diamond Ring

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So, you’ve decided to propose to your significant other…congrats! Now let’s get down to business. The next step, of course, is selecting the ultimate ring – normally, this is regarded as an overwhelming endeavor, but our friendly guide makes things a bit more approachable, arming you with essential tips and knowledge to make the process as seamless and enjoyable as possible. We’ll be rooting for you.

1 · Do Some Light Digging

Channel your inner private investigator to find out the important details like size, setting, and precious metal choice that make up the engagement ring of your significant other’s wildest dreams. Whether it’s secretively asking her closest friends or hunting down her Pinterest board for intel, there are multiple ways to gather the tools you need without spoiling the surprise (unless she wants to pick it out herself – that’d lighten the workload, wouldn’t it?).

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2 · Know Your Shapes

Engagement rings come in all sorts of different shapes and sizes – from solitaire and pavé to halo and channel set (and everything in between), our Style Your Ring tool is the perfect place to familiarize with the basics before you’ve even set foot inside a store. That way, if your bride-to-be hasn’t already dropped a hint on her preferred shape, you’ll have an idea of your own when it comes time to shop.

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There’s a shape for everyone, but as a rule of thumb, the more sparkle, the better.
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In the diamond world, “color” refers to the lack thereof. Who knew?
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Most diamonds have slight imperfections, and clarity refers to where a stone falls on that scale. There are many ways to find a sweet spot here between her taste and your budget.

3 · Meet the “4 Cs”

The “4 Cs” refer to the most important things to take into consideration when shopping for the perfect engagement ring: cut, color, clarity, and carat. Here’s a quick breakdown:

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CUT

Contrary to popular belief, the cut of a diamond is different than its shape – whereas shape refers to the silhouette of the gem, cut indicates its ability to reflect light (i.e. the better the cut, the better the sparkle). To maximize your budget, focus on cut as your priority as this is considered to be the most important facet (pun intended) of diamond shopping.

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COLOR

While ironically named, this category actually refers to the lack of color in a precious stone. You’ll want your diamond to be as close to colorless as possible (to the naked eye), so on the letter scale, aim for grades G or H.

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CLARITY

Clarity refers to the degree of imperfection (or lack thereof) in a stone. Most diamonds do have slight, mostly microscopic imperfections; those entirely without are extremely rare. There is a grading scale for diamond clarity that starts at “I3-I2” and goes all the way up to “FL” (flawless). Aim for somewhere around the VS category – imperfections will be nearly undetectable by the naked eye.

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CARAT

The term “carat” is often misunderstood, so in layman’s terms, it essentially represents the weight of the diamond and not necessarily the size; of course the size impacts the weight on some levels but quality also factors into the equation. For example, a small diamond of high quality might weigh the same in carats as a slightly larger diamond of lower quality. This is something to keep in mind when determining budget and navigating your way through options.

4 · Certification

The importance of a diamond’s certification should not be underestimated –obtaining an official grading report conducted by unbiased gemologists gives the ultimate peace of mind in an investment as serious as an engagement ring. In short, nabbing an engagement ring with a certified diamond completes the five-fecta of gemstone shopping.


Head to macys.com and give our engagement ring section a gander and put these tips to good use.

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