"Will you marry me?" is one of the most important questions you will ever ask. Naturally, you want the perfect ring to go with the proposal — and finding perfection takes time. About 35 percent of couples spend three months or less looking for the right engagement ring, while 24 percent of couples spend four to six months picking out just the right bling before formalizing the engagement, according to The Engagement Ring Bible. Most people will turn to the Internet, talk to their friends and family and ask their fiancé-to-be some questions to help steer toward the right decision, but what do you do when it actually comes to making the purchase? Should you buy your engagement ring online — after all, you can buy just about anything online these days — or, should you make a trip to the store and do your buying in-person? We've compared both options to help you in your quest for just the right diamond engagement ring.
Choose the Right QualityAn engagement ring is an investment, and it’s one you want your fiancé to wear with pride. Determining quality is the first step you would take with any investment. Diamond quality can be broken down into four core characteristics, or the 4Cs:
- Carat weight
Select the FeaturesMost people are novices when it comes to shopping for an engagement ring, and it is easy to become lost in the sea of different styles. Princess or pear cut? White gold or platinum? The decision is tough, and it definitely matters. Brides ranked the following as the most important feature when it comes to their engagement rings, according to The Engagement Ring Bible:
- Overall design: 86.2 percent of brides
- Price: 62.7 percent of brides
- Color: 58.5 percent of brides
- Sentiment: 58.3 percent of brides
- Size: 47.7 percent of brides
- Bar. Small diamonds, each spaced out by a metal bar, surround the entire engagement ring in this setting.
- Bezel. A thin piece of precious metal surrounds the large center diamond of the engagement ring.
- Channel. This setting holds a row of smaller diamonds around the entire band.
- Cluster. The central stone is nestled amongst a number of smaller diamonds in the cluster setting.
- Gypsy. Unlike most other settings, the gypsy setting has the stone sunken into the band so the diamond is even with the rest of the engagement ring.
- Micro pave. Tiny stones run around the entire large diamond in this setting.
- Pave. In the pave setting, smaller stones surround the entire center diamond.
- Prong. Four to six prongs, typically, raise the diamond above its band.
- Shared prong. A common prong supports neighboring diamonds on an engagement ring with a shared prong setting.
Long-Term BenefitsOnline shopping certainly has a number of immediate benefits. You have the chance for savings and a quicker, more convenient shopping process. However, an engagement ring is a lifetime purchase. Your spouse will love and wear that engagement ring every day. If you think about the future, spending a little more in store can be more than worth it. Online retailers may be great for a one-time transaction, and they likely have some type of return policy, but aside from that, your interaction with the seller is finished after the sale. On the other hand, you can build a lasting relationship with a trusted jewelry store. A jewelry store with a quality showroom will offer benefits that come along with the committed purchase of an engagement ring. Your spouse will be wearing her engagement ring long after the magic of the wedding and the honeymoon are over, and day-to-day life means wear and tear. An engagement ring bought from a jeweler can come with lifetime cleaning and inspection, while you would need to find somewhere yourself to clean and maintain an engagement ring bought online. If the engagement ring becomes scratched or dirty, you want to be sure you have a place that can bring it back to its original sparkle and shine. This may seem obvious, but what if the engagement ring doesn't fit quite right? In the romantic, whirlwind moment of the proposal, the perfect fit will hardly seem to matter. However, once wearing the engagement ring becomes part of the daily routine, your fiancé could realize it is a little loose or a bit too tight. You don't want to lose the ring or have it be uncomfortable to wear. With an online purchase, you will have to do a bit of research to find a jeweler to fit the ring and pay a fee. If you've decided to a buy an engagement ring from a jeweler, you can likely bring it back to the store for a free professional fitting. Your fiancé will feel, rightly so, the engagement ring was made just for her. Perhaps more importantly, you can purchase an in-store engagement ring with a lifetime warranty. The sentimental value of an engagement ring is priceless. You will want to have a plan in place if something were to happen to it. One of the smaller stones could be knocked loose, or even the center diamond. A lifetime warrantee will guarantee you can repair the engagement ring, the ring your spouse could not imagine going through life not wearing. Sometimes the right engagement ring just isn't in your price range, but you just can't wait to pop the question. Love comes first, and the perfect ring can come later. You could buy a filler engagement ring online and save up for just the right one, but some jewelry stores offer you a better option. A trade-in option allows you to apply 100 percent of your original diamond purchase price toward the purchase of a more valuable diamond from the store. Then, your partner can have the engagement ring of her dreams and lifetime relationship with a trusted jeweler.
ExperienceAn engagement ring is one of the most personal and memorable gifts you will ever give. Shouldn't the shopping experience match? Online shopping is an impersonal experience. You do not have the chance to speak with anyone else, ask for advice or hear other proposal stories. The stories you have to tell are part of the magic of promising to be with someone forever. Buying an engagement ring the same place you buy the latest book you want to read or order your groceries is not a story. When you walk into the jewelry store where you will find the engagement ring you want to buy, you are about to begin an extraordinary experience you will want to tell everyone about. You can laugh with your fiancé about trying out different rings and proposal speeches on the sales associates, just so you can try to imagine what it will actually be like on that special day. You can tell her how you saw engagement ring after engagement ring until you started to get a nervous feeling you'd never find the one, until the showroom associate held up the diamond that now rests on her ring finger. You can laugh with your family and friends when they tease you for being so nervous. You can tell your kids how tightly you held the box in your hand after you left the store, scared you would drop the engagement ring that already meant so much.
Trust Mountz for the Jewelry That Matters MostAn engagement ring is so much more than a diamond set in a precious metal. It is the first step you will take together as a couple committed to a lifetime together. From the 4Cs and the engagement ring's design to the assurance it will stand the test of time and the stories you will tell for years to come, you want everything to go just right. The moment she sees it, you will know all the effort you spent in that jewelry showroom was worth it. Let us help you find the diamond engagement ring worthy of a lifetime. Visit one of our convenient locations and trust your special moments to Mountz!
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