How to Buy an Engagement Ring in 5 Easy Steps (2024)

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by Suzanne Sachs  5 min read

Art deco Diamond Rings



Whether you have been in a relationship for years or have just recently found that special someone whom you hope will be “the one,” buying an engagement ring can be intimidating. These five easy steps can help guide you through the process to choose the perfect ring to represent the love you share and the promises you are ready to make to each other.


In this guide, we will explain the following:

  • Step 1: Are You Ready to Propose?
  • Step 2: Discover the Ring Style
  • Step 3: Consider a Budget
  • Step 4: Study Up on Diamonds and Gemstones
  • Step 5: Discover the Ring Style
  • Make the Purchase
  • How Long Should it Take to Buy the Engagement Ring?

    Step 1: Are You Ready to Propose?

    Before beginning to shop for an engagement ring, consider whether or not you are ready to propose and ask this most important, life-changing question.

    As a couple, you should both feel secure and comfortable in your relationship, and should be at the point where you've discussed critical aspects of how you would build a life together: finances, religion, whether or not to have children, career paths, and similar topics that will impact how you live and grow together. You should have met one another’s families if possible, and already be saving not just for an engagement ring, but also for a wedding, honeymoon, home together, and other expenses all couples face. If you don’t feel ready to make this commitment, it is not the time to buy an engagement ring.

    Retro engagement ring

    Step 2: Discover the Ring Style

    As you feel ready to make this next step, try to discover your significant other’s engagement ring style preferences. For some couples, this can be a very open discussion as you visit jewelry stores, try on different styles, and begin to learn about diamonds, gemstones and jewelry eras.

    If you would prefer a “surprise” engagement ring, you can still learn about your partner’s jewelry fashion by closely watching what pieces they wear most often and which rings or other jewelry they like best. This can clue you in about diamond or gemstone preferences, whether they like warm or cool tones, and whether they are more traditional, modern, or edgy in their overall style. This can inform what type of engagement ring style you will ultimately select.

    This is also the time to verify the correct ring size. Any jeweler can do this, or you can compare a favorite ring they frequently wear to sizing tools to determine the right ring size for a perfect fit.


    Step 3: Consider a Budget

    Engagement rings can cost less than $500 to $15,000 or more depending on the ring style, precious metal choice, gemstone size and quality, retailer, and other factors. It is important that you set a reasonable budget that you can both agree on for this most important purchase. Some jewelers and jewelry retailers offer financing and layaway plans if you are comfortable making payments, or you might consider estate jewelry as a less expensive but still beautiful possibility.

    Antique or vintage engagement rings can also be stunning options for less than the cost of a new, modern ring. Beautiful rings can be had at any price point, but it is important to stick to your agreed-upon budget. This will not only demonstrate your commitment to your life together, but will show your respect for the plans you’ve made and the financial responsibility you will have as you share expenses.


    Step 4: Study Up on Diamonds and Gemstones

    As you begin to examine different engagement rings in detail, be sure you are familiar with diamond and jewelry quality such as the four C’s of diamonds – carat, cut, color, and clarity, as well as the qualities and origins of precious and semi-precious gemstones. This will help you better understand the stone you are investing in to ensure the ring you buy is one that will retain its value for years, just as your relationship remains strong through many happy anniversaries.

    At the same time, look beyond just the physical characteristics of the stone to be sure you are happy with the overall purchase. Consider researching blood or conflict diamonds, and ask your jewelry retailer about their diamond buying practices to determine if their stones – and the ring you will buy – have ethical origins. You might also consider environmental practices and commitments to charities, social justice, and other causes so you feel comfortable supporting a business with this very significant purchase.


    Step 5: Make the Purchase

    You’ve done your research, discussed a budget, chosen the style, found the retailer you prefer… It’s time to buy the engagement ring! Decide whether you will pay in full or be making payments, and inspect your individual ring carefully before finalizing the purchase. Take time to understand the terms and conditions of the sale, such as whether or not regular inspections are necessary to maintain a ring’s warranty or what types of repairs may or may not be covered. Before leaving with the ring, have it thoroughly cleaned so it is as beautiful as possible when you ask that most important question.

    Finally, keep all receipts for the ring, as well as any warranty paperwork, and store them carefully in a secure spot. You will need this documentation in the future if repairs are necessary, or if you add the engagement ring to any home or personal property insurance policy in case of theft or damage.


    How Long Should It Take to Buy an Engagement Ring?

    There is no single timeline for how long it should take you to feel comfortable buying an engagement ring. For couples who know their style and are comfortable with very open discussions on this type of purchase, it may take just a few days to find and buy the best ring. For other couples, it may be a process that takes months to find that one special piece of jewelry that feels right for their relationship.

    By taking the time to buy an engagement ring with thoughtful consideration, you can feel comfortable with the purchase and the step it represents in your life together as you ask that very special question the ring will symbolize.


    Antique Engagement Rings For Everyone:

    No matter which era is your favorite, these time-honored rings have a rich history and individualized character and will continue to have a timeless beauty and elegant appeal that is part of a legacy to pass on to future generations.

    Find The Perfect Engagement Ring:

    Antique diamond cuts are prized not only for their beauty but also for their exquisite attention to detailing and faceting. If you’re looking for a ring with a sense of glamour, sophistication and vintage charm, explore our collection of vintage engagement rings today!


    Suzanne Sachs

    Suzanne has always believed vintage rings can change lives. She's been in the jewelry industry for over 35 years, working with vintage jewelers, diamond dealers, diamond cutters, and gemologists. Suzanne started Artdecodiamonds in 2000 and understood the demand for vintage rings throughout the world. She ultimately started in 2014, and understands each vintage ring is a reflection of you – your history, your relationships, your style, your elegance and is honored to have the opportunity to help you showcase your flair in a unique and exquisite way.


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    Art Deco Emerald Ring


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