Engagement Rings

Engagement Ring Guide

Finding your soul mate may be a challenge, but buying an engagement ring she’ll love is easier than you might think. When it comes to choosing an engagement ring setting, there are virtually unlimited possibilities catering to all tastes and styles. While some prefer the elegant simplicity of a solitaire setting, others may opt for a setting with side stones. Gemstone engagement rings add a pop of color to any ring, while halo settings are sophisticated and graceful. Here are our 6 favorite styles when it comes to engagement ring settings:

Solitaire Engagement Rings

In a solitaire ring, a single diamond sits on a metal band. The most popular ring setting style, solitaires are a traditional style that embodies a timeless elegance.

Side-Stone Engagement Rings

Side stones embellish an engagement ring by increasing its sparkle. Small accent stones add interest and individuality, creating a sophisticated aesthetic.

Antique Engagement Rings

Antique engagement rings express a unique charm. Vintage details from past eras make these diamond ring settings fit to be passed down as family heirlooms.

Halo Engagement Rings

In a halo ring setting, small stones surround a center diamond, making the diamond appear larger. The halo setting style is known for its femininity and brilliance.

Three-Stone Engagement Rings

In a three-stone ring, the middle diamond is largest. This style allows for mixing and matching diamond shapes to create a symmetrical look that frames the center.

Gemstone Engagement Rings

Colored gems line the ring band, contrasting with the center diamond. Gemstones add vibrancy to a ring and are the perfect choice for brides who love color.

Most Popular Diamond Shapes


A brilliant cut, round diamond exceeds all other shapes in its ability to reflect light. One of the most popular choices for engagement rings, a round diamond is extremely versatile and looks striking in a variety of settings.


A square stone with 90-degree corners, the princess shape originated in the United States in 1980. Due to the unique cutting and polishing method that is used, inclusions are not as visible in a princess cut as they would be in another.


Introduced in 1902 by renowned diamond cutter Joseph Asscher, the asscher cut utilizes many of the same cutting techniques as the emerald cut. What sets asscher diamonds apart are their uniquely angled and cropped corners.


Radiant cut diamonds are a stunning hybrid of the tradi- tional round cut and the elegant emerald cut. Radiant diamonds tend to emit a beautiful glow, and can have a square, near-square, or rectangular orientation.


First introduced in the early 1800’s, the cushion cut is considered by many to be a vintage version of the round cut diamond. A cushion diamond is cut into a square or rectangular shape and features rounded corners and sides.


When Selecting a Diamond Shape

When selecting a diamond shape, consider the style and figure of the wearer. For instance, if she has longer fingers, a wider band with a round or square center stone will look especially attractive. If she has shorter fingers, a thinner band with stone shapes like the marquise or pear would be a beautiful choice and would make her fingers appear longer. Engagement rings with a larger stone, wider band and bolder styling make the perfect complement to a curvier bride.

Custom Engagement Rings

Make a custom ring to meet your exact specifications.

Custom Diamond Search

Our diamond experts can help you find the best diamond within your price range.

Choosing a Metal Type for an Engagement Ring

Consider her preferred jewelry style when deciding on the precious metal of her engagement ring. Does she wear primarily yellow gold, white metal, or a combination of each? Let’s take a look at some of the most common precious metals used for engagement rings.


Gold is a classic, timeless option for engagement rings. In its purest form (24-karat), gold is too soft for use in jewelry. When used to make engagement rings, gold is typically alloyed with other metals like copper, silver, nickel, and zinc to add strength and durability. The ratio of alloy to gold content is what determines the gold’s carat weight and purity.

18k Gold

18K gold consists of 75% gold and 25% alloy metals. Fine jewelry experts consider this karat weight to possess ideal balance of metal purity and strength. Those who prefer yellow gold, 18K exhibits a deeper, richer coloring than 14K yellow gold.

14k Gold

14k Gold 14K gold consists of 58.3% gold and 41.7% alloy metals. Priced slightly less than 18K gold, it’s a popular choice among those shopping on a limited budget. For those who prefer white gold, 14K offers a whiter coloring than 18K white gold.

Yellow Gold vs. White Gold

White and Yellow gold are comparably priced and possess the same levels of durability and gold content. If you’re pondering whether to choose white or yellow gold, here are a few suggestions to help with your decision:

Yellow Gold: If your bride-to-be wears a lot of yellow gold jewelry, choosing this metal for her engagement ring will complement her current style and taste. Yellow gold engagement rings are a classic choice, complementing those with warmer skin tones.

White Gold: If she wears mostly white gold or sterling silver jewelry, a white gold engagement ring may be a wise choice. White gold offers a smooth, contemporary appeal and blends well with other jewelry pieces and clothing colors.

Platinum vs. White Gold

While white gold and platinum are both white metals that beautifully reflect light, there are some fundamental differences between the two. If you’re leaning toward a white precious metal and are undecided between platinum and white gold, here are a few points that may help with your decision.

Platinum is 95% pure, while white gold is 58.3-75% pure. If allergies or skin sensitivities are a concern, platinum is more hypoallergenic.

Platinum is harder and more durable than 18K white gold (although platinum can be scratched and is not entirely damage-resistant).

While platinum retains its solid white coloring permanently, white gold can develop a slight yellow hue over time as the outer layers of metal wear off. At Brilliance, we coat each of our white gold jewelry pieces with a protective layer of Rhodium, a metal that creates a white, gleaming look similar to platinum. White gold should be re-coated in Rhodium periodically to help maintain its original luster.

For those who prefer the look of platinum but need an economical alternative, white gold offers much of the same visual appeal at a significantly lower price. Learn more about platinum versus white gold.

Whatever Metal You Choose

Most of the engagement rings offered at Brilliance are designed with a platinum head, ensuring a secure setting for your center stone.


How much should you spend?

An engagement ring is likely the most significant jewelry purchase you’ll ever make. Shopping for one is an emotional event, and it can be tempting to over-spend. Before starting the process, establish a budget for what you can afford. While an amount equivalent to two month’s salary is a common starting point, many couples choose to spend more or less.

Keep the following factors in mind when establishing your engagement ring budget:


You’ll want to purchase a diamond with the highest possible quality within your budget. Many couples sacrifice in other areas to get a better stone. For instance, you may want to start with a simple, inexpensive setting so you can invest more in the cut, color, and clarity of the diamond. You can always upgrade to a more elaborate setting later.

Jeweler Reputation

Discount jewelers may be the least expensive, but may not offer the value, warranties, or services you need. Make sure the jeweler you choose is a reputable seller with a history of satisfied customers. With more than 30 years in the business, Brilliance has built a steller reputation, so you can purchase from us with confidence.

Other Financial Considerations

Consider all financial obligations when determining your engagement ring budget. Take into account wedding and honeymoon expenses, the cost of setting up a new household, student loan debt, credit card balances, and vehicle debt. You don’t want to start off your new life together with financial strain.

Making your Purchase

When you’ve finally selected “the” ring and are ready to buy, it’s important to obtain a gemological appraisal that confirms the ring’s value for insurance purposes. Reputable jewelers should also provide a certificate from an independent diamond grading facility, such as the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) or American Gem Society (AGS), which details the center diamond’s grade. In case the style isn’t quite right and you need to return the ring, verify that the jeweler offers a money-back guarantee and a hassle-free return policy. With every loose diamond and diamond engagement ring purchased, Brilliance includes a gemological appraisal certified by our Master Gemologist, along with a diamond grading report from one of the five most reputable independent gemology labs. Our 30-day money back return policy provides peace of mind and ensures that our customers are completely satisfied with their purchase.

Protecting your Purchase

While priceless in terms of sentimentality, an engagement ring is likely to be the most valuable piece of jewelry a woman will own. When purchasing an engagement ring, it’s important to get insurance to protect your diamond in the event that it is lost or stolen. To insure your engagement ring, you’ll need a detailed appraisal that documents its value. The most commonly offered policy for jewelry is replacement coverage, which guarantees a payment that will purchase a ring identical in quality, design, metal, and setting. Other types of coverage may be available depending on the policy of your insurance company. For your convenience, we have partnered with Lavalier Insurance Services to provide our customers with Jewelry Insurance that will keep you protected.

The Surprise Factor

While it’s not uncommon for a couple to shop together for an engagement ring, some grooms still prefer to surprise the bride-to-be with a ring of their choosing. After deciding on the metal type, diamond shape, and quality level your budget allows, you’ll be ready to narrow your search to a few finalists. To ensure that you select the perfect ring while maintaining an element of surprise, ask for a second opinion from one of the bride-to-be’s close friends or from her mother. You’ll want to slip the ring on her finger with ease, so proper sizing is important. If her friend or mother can’t assist you with the ring size, try to obtain one of her rings and size it using our printable ring sizer. If you can’t take the ring with you, measure or trace the inside diameter on a sheet of paper and contact a Brilliance diamond and jewelry expert at 866-737-0754 for sizing assistance.