fine jewelry including earrings, necklace and a tennis bracelet

Winter Jewelry Guide: Tips To Stay Warm & Sparkle

Read our winter jewelry guide for cool tips in time for the holiday season. 

Winter Jewelry Guide: Tips To Stay Warm & Sparkle

As the weather takes a cold turn and we start to cover up with gloves, scarves and sweaters, it’s the perfect time to lighten the mood by accessorizing with your favorite statement jewelry. Brrrace yourself, we’ve compiled a list of styling tips to make sure that you stay warm (and sparkle!) this winter. 

Go Long

Keeping warm in icy temperatures requires a bit of extra wardrobe work. With additional layers of clothing, it’s best to keep your jewelry simple. Stop your chains and necklaces from getting tangled with a single, elongated pendant. They’re long enough to fit over thicker clothing and offer a sparkly, solid glow.

Four Prong Basket Solitaire Pendant

White Gold Four Prong Basket Solitaire Pendant - Winter Jewelry Guide

Emerald Cut Solitaire Pendant

Yellow Gold Emerald Cut Solitaire Pendant - Winter Jewelry Guide

Pear-Shape Solitaire Pendant 

White Gold Pear-Shape Solitaire Pendant - Winter Jewelry Guide

Glisten Up

Look extra cute when it’s extra cold with a pair of delicate studs. You’ll instantly brighten up any outfit and avoid dangly earrings getting caught in your scarf or turtlenecks. And small hoops? They’re perfect, not to mention chic.

Halo Diamond Earrings

White Gold Halo Diamond Earrings - Winter Jewelry Guide

Wire Basket Stud Earrings

Yellow Gold Wire Basket Stud Earrings - Winter Jewelry Guide

Huggie Hoop Earrings

White Gold Huggie Hoop Earrings - Winter Jewelry Guide

Pretty Pearls

Pearls have always been a firm favorite for any season, and winter is no exception. They’re smooth, which means you won’t damage your winter clothing and are easy to accessorize. Plus, they seamlessly complement winter hues like black, navy and charcoal.

Cultured Pearl Bracelet

Yellow Gold Cultured Pearl Bracelet - Winter Jewelry Guide

Pearl Bangle

Yellow Gold Pearl Bangle - Winter Jewelry Guide

Keep It Basic

Ever snagged your favorite sweater while showing off your sparkler? Here’s an easy fix – flat rings. Not only are these safer for those delicate items of clothing, you’ll look equally dazzling. The cold weather is also the perfect opportunity to flaunt a ring with December’s wintery birthstone – blue topaz.

Pavė Rainbow Ring By Brevani

Pavė Rainbow Ring - Winter Jewelry Guide

Infinity Blue Topaz Birthstone Ring

White Gold Infinity Blue Topaz Birthstone Ring - Winter Jewelry Guide

Ready for a sparkling winter? Check out the articles below to get more inspiration!

Engagement ring catch your eye? Share the love on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, or in the comments below!

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Jarred Maram

Jarred is a writer by day and unofficial office ping pong champion

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ring stacking tips

Stackable Rings: The Essential Guide

We’ve compiled a dazzling assortment of stackable rings. P.S. You’ll want to start stacking these beauties ASAP.

Stackable Rings: Top Ring Stacking Tips

Stacking rings is more than wearing a variety of sparkle, it’s a symbol of your individuality. Whether you stack multiple rings on many fingers or pile sparkle on one finger, both make a shining statement. Stackable rings are also a foolproof gift to spoil a loved one to mark a special occasion. Read our top ring stacking tips, then stack the perfect combo! 

Love At First Stack

When it comes to stackable rings, the creative floodgates are open! Start with a statement ring on your ring finger and build around it. Alternatively, choose small rings with subtle bits of sparkle and work your way up. There’s no right or wrong answer – you are the leader of your stack! We think white, rose and yellow gold rings make the dream stack.

White Gold North South Diamond Ring

White Gold North South Diamond Ring - Stackable Rings

Rose Gold Shared Prong Alternating Diamond Ring

Rose Gold Shared Prong Alternating Diamond Ring - Stackable Rings

Yellow Gold Fishtail Diamond Ring

Yellow Gold Fishtail Diamond Ring

Mix & Match

Learning how to build a mixed metal ring stack requires a combination of practice and personal preference. If you’re feeling adventurous, use two contrasting metals to mix and match your statement ring. Pick a primary color, then add 2-3 secondary pieces to the top and bottom of the center ring for a stunning alternating combo.

Yellow Gold Petite Station Diamond Ring

Yellow Gold Petite Station Diamond Ring - Stackable Rings

White Gold Twisted Pavé Wedding Ring

White Gold Twisted Pavé Wedding Ring - Stackable Rings

Yellow Gold Baguette & Round Alternating Ring

Yellow Gold Baguette & Round Alternating Ring - Stackable Rings

Simple Stacking

In the pursuit of the perfect stack, sometimes things can go from #onpoint to slightly over the top. To avoid this, slim it down using a thin ring and use stackable rings of the same width. This sleek look is dazzling AND gives you more finger freedom – double win, triple shine 😉

White Gold Sleek Accent Diamond Ring

White Gold Sleek Accent Diamond Ring - Stackable Rings

Yellow Gold Single Row Diamond Ring

Yellow Gold Single Row Diamond Ring - Stackable Rings

Rose Gold Thin French Cut Pavé Eternity Ring

Rose Gold Thin French Cut Pavé Eternity Ring - Stackable Rings

Weighing Your Options

Create a stackable look that demands attention. To avoid your stackable rings feeling too matchy matchy, experiment with different weights and shapes. This adds personality and variation to your stack. A bold piece, like this eternity ring, stacked with a simple pave՛ makes the perfect pair.

White Gold Half Bezel Set Diamond Eternity Ring

White Gold Half Bezel Set Diamond Eternity Ring - Stackable Rings

White Gold U Pavé Rounded Wedding Ring

White Gold Pavé Rounded Wedding Ring - Stackable Rings

Ready to stack? Check out the articles below to get more inspiration!

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Jarred Maram

Jarred is a writer by day and unofficial office ping pong champion

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blue sapphire ring

Sapphire Rings: Something New, Something Blue

We’ve got the scoop on why you absolutely need to add a blue sapphire ring to your jewelry box. Read on to find out!

You may be wondering: With so many ring styles and stunning gemstone options to choose from, what sets blue sapphires apart? Featuring a mesmerizing blue gemstone, sapphire jewelry makes the perfect gift for that special occasion. And trust us, you’re going to want a blue sapphire ring. Brace yourself for a whole lot of BLUE. 

1. They’re Unique

There’s no denying that diamonds are the de facto choice when choosing your sparkler. But we think a blue sapphire comes a close second, and we’re not alone! Blue sapphire is one of the rarest gemstones to grace an engagement ring. Choose blue sapphire and set yourself apart from the crowd with these statement pieces.

White Gold Vintage Bowtie Sapphire & Diamond Ring

White Gold Vintage Bowtie Sapphire & Diamond Ring

Yellow Gold Diamond & Marquise Sapphire Wedding Ring

Yellow Gold Diamond & Marquise Sapphire Wedding Ring

2. A History Of Glam

Blue sapphire rings are popular amongst celebrities and have been associated with the royal family for centuries. Notably, the September gemstone brings to mind the world’s most famous (and gorgeous) blue sapphire ring once belonging to Princess Diana and currently worn by Kate Middleton. It broke trends back then and is still making its mark today.

White Gold Oval Halo Sapphire and Diamond Ring

White Gold Oval Halo Sapphire and Diamond Ring

White Gold Milgrain Bezel Sapphire Ring

White Gold Milgrain Bezel Sapphire Ring

3. They’re Tough

Blue sapphire is an inherently strong and durable gemstone, with a score of 9 on the Mohs scale – second to only diamonds. This means that you can flaunt your blue sapphire ring without worrying about chipping, scratching or cracking from everyday wear. Choose a traditional shape and get creative with a sparkling white gold ring.

White Gold Sapphire Pavé Sugarloaf Ring

White Gold Sapphire Pave՛ Sugarloaf Ring

White Gold Sapphire Pavé East-West Oval Ring

White Gold Sapphire Pave East-West Oval Ring

4. They’re More Affordable

The tradition, uniqueness and lasting beauty associated with sapphires also comes with dazzling affordability. Sapphires typically cost less per carat than diamonds, giving you more design flexibility and bang for your buck. Whatever style you choose, one thing is certain – you’ll shine down the aisle in a ring with a splash of blue 😉 

Three Stone Blue Sapphire Engagement Ring

Three Stone Blue Sapphire Engagement Ring

Vintage Diamond & Marquise Sapphire Engagement Ring

Vintage Diamond & Marquise Sapphire Engagement Ring

5. They’re Perfect For Everyday

When you choose a blue sapphire ring, it will be a perfect accessory for almost any outfit, whether you’re casual in blue jeans or glamming it up in a cocktail dress. No matter the occasion, you’ll always have an excuse to put yourself in our blues.

Yellow Gold Blue Sapphire & Aquamarine Ring

Yellow Gold Blue Sapphire & Aquamarine Ring

Rose Gold Diamond & Sapphire Baguette Milgrain Ring

Rose Gold Diamond & Sapphire Baguette Milgrain Ring

All Blue-d Up? Check out the articles below to get more inspiration!

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Jarred Maram

Jarred is a writer by day and unofficial office ping pong champion

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guide to pinterest cover

Using Pinterest to Find Your Partner’s Dream Ring

Trying to figure out your partner’s taste in engagement rings while hiding the fact that you’re ring shopping? If they use Pinterest (and they probably do), here’s how to make it your secret weapon in the search for that dream ring.

Pinterest is a brainstormer’s utopia, which is why it’s used by TONS of ring enthusiasts to virtually window shop. When your partner uses Pinterest (if they don’t, give them a nudge!), you have front-row access to exactly the rings they love. And remember, you can contact our customer service team at any time for hands-on help. 

DISCOVER THEIR STYLE

Quickly identify your partner’s ring style by identifying trends on their Pinterest boards. As you browse their ring pins, ask yourself which ring characteristics show up most often:

  • Type of setting (pavé, solitaire, halo…)
  • Ring metal (rose/white/yellow gold…)
  • Diamond cut (round, emerald, oval…)

Head to James Allen’s Engagement Ring board and easily search rings by your partner’s fav categories. Once you’ve collected your ring inspo, save the pins to a secret board (more on that below). Share them with our customer service team and within minutes they’ll help you pin-point THE ring!

Next up: how to get Pin-spired without raising any ring-shopping suspicions.

Triple Diamond Cluster Engagement Ring

Using Pinterest to Find Your Partner’s Dream Ring: Rose Gold Triple Diamond Cluster Engagement Ring.

“I took all of the best elements from my fiancée’s Pinterest and combined them into this ring. She is absolutely over the moon with it.”

-Quincy B.

FOLLOW ANONYMOUSLY

To follow your partner without them knowing:

  1. Create a Pinterest account using a non-specific username and a first name/last name that’s not your own.
  2. Search for your partner by their email address (or Pinterest username if you know it)
  3. Go into their profile and click “See all boards”
  4. Choose the relevant engagement ring-related board and click “follow.” 
  5. All the pins you follow will appear in the “following” tab at the top of the page.

Split Shank Solitaire Engagement Ring

Using Pinterest to Find Your Partner’s Dream Ring: Split Shank Solitaire Engagement Ring.

“When the time was right I scoured her Pinterest page looking at photos she had collected over the years. Through these pictures I had an idea of what she liked.”

– Zachary T.

SAVE THEIR RINGS

Once you’re following your partner, it’s super convenient to save all their relevant pins in one location. You can do this by saving their pins to your own secret board, or you can download their pins and save them on your computer – or both!

How to save rings to a SECRET board

To ensure everything stays private, all you have to do is make your board secret. Just click on the pencil icon in the bottom right-hand corner of the board tile. A pop-up will appear. Scroll down and activate the option “keep this board secret.”

If your partner visits your profile, they won’t be able to see any of your saved pins on this secret board. Your secret will be safe.

Vintage Filigree Engagement Ring

Using Pinterest to Find Your Partner’s Dream Ring: Vintage Filigree Engagement Ring

“I immediately was drawn to one ring that I had seen on my girlfriend’s Pinterest page once… I knew it was perfect for her and she absolutely loves it!”

– Zahnlecker M.

COLLABORATE WITH FRIENDS/FAMILY

How can you use Pinterest to collaborate with your partner’s friends and family? Invite them to pin to your ring board and comment on the rings you’ve found!

To get input from the people who know your partner’s tastes best, first search for your ring helpers via username or email – but don’t follow them. (If you do follow them, anyone can see you’re connected.) Then, invite them to collaborate on your secret board.

Once they accept, your partners-in-crime can help by adding ring pins and commenting directly on specific rings.

Entangled Vines Engagement Ring

Using Pinterest to Find Your Partner’s Dream Ring: Entangled Vines Engagement Ring

“My fiancée had a specific ring in mind (Which she made very well known via Pinterest) and James Allen was one of only a handful of online retailers to carry this specific design.”

– Curtis M.

FIND SIMILAR RINGS

Found a James Allen ring on Pinterest that looks almost perfect, but not quite? Open the pin and enlarge the ring to see similar-looking rings.

Our legendary customer service team is also an incredible resource. They’re available 24/7 – and super responsive! Reach out and you’ll be chatting with them within minutes. They’re fantastic at helping to narrow down ring options once you’ve got an idea of your partner’s style.

Cushion Outline Halo Engagement Ring

Using Pinterest to Find Your Partner’s Dream Ring: Cushion Outline Halo Engagement Ring

“I was on my fiancée’s Pinterest and saw a ring from James Allen…Now everyone she comes into contact with always asks about her ring and the compliments never stop!”

-Brandon M.

DO YOUR RESEARCH

So now you’re an expert, buff up your ring expertise by following James Allen Rings on Pinterest. Get the most info for your follow by starting with these James Allen Pinterest boards that are chock-full of educational advice:

Petite Pavé Engagement Ring

Using Pinterest to Find Your Partner’s Dream Ring: Petite Pavé Engagement Ring

“I noticed that 90% of her rings on Pinterest had pavé bands, so I found a really nice diamond and put the ring together. She loves it.”

-Keith G.

On a stealthy ring hunt? Read on for clues:

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Rachel Hoar

Rachel is an unabashed linguistics fanatic who can identify the ancient Greek root of any word. She promises not to spray you with Windex.

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Earth-Created vs. Lab-Grown Diamonds: A Guide

Lab-grown diamond – or earth-created diamond? Here’s all the data you need to live your best sparkling life.

lab-grown diamonds vs. earth-created diamonds set side-by-side on blue and pink backgrounds

Lab-grown diamonds are pretty much the new kids on the jewelry block. So let’s clarify a few points, so you can decide with 100% confidence which sort of sparkle sets a twinkle in your eye: classic earth-created diamonds, or cutting-edge lab-grown diamonds

ORIGIN

The only difference between the two is their origin.

Earth-created diamonds: sourced from below the earth’s surface.
Lab-created diamonds: created in simulated “below-ground” conditions in a lab.

What’s a diamond? It’s just carbon atoms. But arrange them in a very particular structure, and you get the incredibly hard and beautiful stone we know and love. Producing this special carbon arrangement in nature demands conditions that are…intense. We’re talking high heat and super high pressure. Needless to say, very few places in the world are capable of producing earth-created diamonds. 

But technology has advanced to the point that we don’t always have to go digging for our precious stones; we can actually simulate the necessary extreme conditions in specialized pressure chambers in a lab. Lab-created diamonds are grown from tiny carbon “seeds” that develop in these chambers over months, as incredibly hot gases deposit carbon atom-by-atom onto the original seed.

Lab-created diamonds even develop their own unique characteristics (inclusions, clarity, etc) along the way, and once they’re fully grown they’re cut into the shape that suits their qualities best.

White Gold Pavé Halo Engagement Ring
with Cushion-Cut Diamond

lab-grown diamonds vs. earth-created diamonds: white gold halo cushion-cut diamond engagement ring

Rose Gold Vintage Engagement Ring
with Princess-Cut Diamond

lab-grown diamonds vs. earth-created diamonds: rose gold vintage floral diamond engagement ring

COST

Lab-grown diamonds are generally about 30% more affordable than earth-created diamonds.

Why?

The diamond-growing process is less resource-intensive than the diamond-mining process. It simply costs less to grow a diamond in a lab than it does to mine a diamond from the earth, and those savings are passed along to diamond-shoppers. That means that for the same cost, you can purchase a lab-created diamond that’s 30% larger than an earth-created one.

Rose Gold Bezel-Set Pavé Engagement Ring

lab-grown diamonds vs. earth-created diamonds: rose gold pavé bezel-set diamond engagement ring

Two-Tone Comfort Fit Engagement Ring

lab-grown diamonds vs. earth-created diamonds: white gold and yellow gold diamond engagement ring

VALUE

Earth-created diamonds are the classic choice. Lab-created diamonds are the fresh choice. 

There is no doubt that earth-created diamonds contain millennia of history, tradition, and romance. They are one of nature’s most incredible products. Drawn from deep within the earth, these sparkling treasures have been proudly flaunted by generations upon generations – paving the way for you to carry on the tradition.

Lab-created diamonds, on the other hand, are the next step in diamond history. Technically speaking, they’re brand new. But traditionally speaking, diamonds are diamonds forever. Lab-created diamonds give their wearer a unique chance to create new memories. 

Both earth-created diamonds AND lab-created diamonds hold their sparkle forever, so they’ll be just as beautiful when you’ll pass them on as heirlooms as they are when you wear them on a night out.

Rose Gold Leaf Bypass Engagement Ring

lab-grown diamonds vs. earth-created diamonds: rose gold bypass diamond engagement ring

White Gold Tapered Pavé Engagement Ring

lab-grown diamonds vs. earth-created diamonds: white gold tapered pavé diamond engagement ring

CUTS & COLORS

Both earth-created and lab-created diamonds are available in nearly every shape and color – even fancy colors!

Colorful diamonds, like canary yellow ones, are quite rare. Their shocking hues are caused by trace amounts of non-carbon elements, like nitrogen. By adding these elements to a growing diamond in its pressure chamber, lab-grown diamonds take on the same fancy colors as earth-created diamonds.
Good news: any diamond can be cut into any shape. When it comes to diamond cuts, you truly are spoiled for choice!

White Gold Milgrain Engagement Ring
with Princess-Cut Fancy Yellow Diamond

lab-grown diamonds vs. earth-created diamonds: white gold fancy yellow diamond engagement ring

White Gold Laurel Engagement Ring
with Cushion-Cut Diamond

lab-grown diamonds vs. earth-created diamonds: white gold cushion-cut diamond engagement ring

JEWELRY

Diamonds aren’t only for rings. Have a look at the pendants and earrings that can be set with either earth-created or lab-grown diamonds:

White Gold Bezel-Set Diamond Pendant

lab-grown diamonds vs. earth-created diamonds: white gold diamond pendant

Yellow Gold Scroll Diamond Pendant

lab-grown diamonds vs. earth-created diamonds: yellow gold diamond pendant

White Gold Princess-Cut Diamond Stud Earrings

lab-grown diamonds vs. earth-created diamonds: white gold princess-cut diamond stud earrings

Yellow Gold Martini Diamond Stud Earrings

lab-grown diamonds vs. earth-created diamonds: yellow gold diamond stud earrings

Searching for more diamond reading? Read on below!

  1. Lab-created Diamonds vs. Moissanite
  2. Princess Cut vs. Cushion Cut 
  3. Why Diamond Cut Matters Most
  4. How To Care For Your Diamonds
  5. Our Diamond Price Match Guarantee

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Rachel Hoar

Rachel is an unabashed linguistics fanatic who can identify the ancient Greek root of any word. She promises not to spray you with Windex.

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design a ring with your partner

Designing Your Ring Together: Here’s Why You Should

Are you and your SO thinking about designing a ring together? Here’s why you should.

Buying an engagement ring is no easy task. It often takes time, patience and planning to score the perfect ring that your partner will wear forever. To ease the process, can a couple design a ring together without taking the surprise or romance out of the proposal? We think so. Find out why designing a ring may just be one of the best decisions you’ll make together.

1. A Modern Love

Nowadays, choosing to design a ring together has gained more popularity and comes with many pros. Not only does it alleviate pressure from your fiancé to find a ring that suits her style and preferences, it’ll give your partner comfort knowing that they made the perfect choice. Win-Win. Not sure where to begin? Start with a simple solitaire ring and take it from there.

White Gold Split Shank Solitaire Engagement Ring

White Gold Split Shank Solitaire Engagement Ring

Yellow Gold Tapered Milgrain Solitaire Engagement Ring

Yellow Gold Tapered Milgrain Solitaire Engagement Ring

2. You Glow Girl

Traditionally, the man picks the ring, comes up with an elaborate proposal plan, pops the question, then it’s all smiles and ring selfies. Today, more women prefer to add their two cents. Designing a ring together will give you peace of mind knowing your SO is getting exactly what they want. It’s a pretty bold choice. In the spirit of bold decisions, go big and design a halo.

White Gold Navette Leaf Halo Engagement Ring

White Gold Navette Leaf Halo Engagement Ring

Yellow Gold Cushion Outline Pavé Engagement Ring

Yellow Gold Cushion Outline Pavé Engagement Ring

3. In It Together

When you design a ring as a duo, it means you do everything together. You’ll be able to choose a ring you love and set a budget you’re both comfortable with. You’ll also know what setting and diamond to choose and get your partner’s ring size on the spot. Why not use our try-on feature together and test drive these vintage, three-stone or channel set rings?

Yellow Gold Vintage Infinity Engagement Ring

Yellow Gold Vintage Infinity Engagement Ring

Rose Gold Three-Stone & Pavé Engagement Ring

Rose Gold Three-Stone & Pavé Engagement Ring

White Gold Bow-Tie Channel Set Engagement Ring

White Gold Bow-Tie Channel Set Engagement Ring

4. Tried and Tested

Many of our customers have chosen to design a ring together and could not be happier. Does it ruin the proposal moment? Hardly. Some decisions can still be a secret, like where, when or how the proposal will take place. Plus, they’ll be surprised in a good way with a ring they love. Read what our customers have said after designing their rings together.

We took the modern approach of picking out the ring together. We are so happy with it! – Lea H.’

White Gold Petite Pavé Cathedral Engagement Ring

White Gold Petite Pavé Cathedral Engagement Ring

‘My fiancée and I picked the ring out together and I am so happy we did’ – Roxanne E.

Yellow Gold Twisted Vine Engagement Ring

Yellow Gold Twisted Vine Engagement Ring

‘We picked our ring together and found the experience to be wonderful.’ – Erik S.

Rose Gold Graduated Halo Engagement Ring

Rose Gold Graduated Halo Engagement Ring

Sounds Like Love

What’s better than crafting the ring of your dreams together? Designing a ring with a sweet beat. Follow us on Spotify for a dazzling selection of tunes that’ll up the romance when you’re ring shopping on JamesAllen.com (wink wink). 

Designed your dream ring yet? Check out the articles below to get more inspiration!

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Jarred Maram

Jarred is a writer by day and unofficial office ping pong champion

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affordable engagement rings

Affordable Engagement Rings: Our Top Picks

These affordable engagement rings are equally as beautiful as they are budget-friendly!

Affordable engagement rings: pear-cut diamond halo engagement ring

Everybody deserves their dream engagement ring. However, in some cases, high-quality glitter comes with an equally high price tag. If you’re looking for an affordable yet beautiful engagement ring, don’t fret. We’ve compiled a list of our top-selling affordable engagement rings that will have your SO beaming as bright as the rings themselves.

1. Solitaire Engagement Rings

When it comes to affordable engagement rings, a solitaire ring is always a good place to start. Consisting of a single stone and simple setting, this timeless ring allows your diamond to take center stage. Keep it simple but shiny with these classics.

White Gold Split Shank Solitaire Engagement Ring

Affordable engagement rings: a white gold split-shank solitaire engagement ring

Knife Edge Solitaire Engagement Ring

Affordable engagement rings: yellow gold knife-edge solitaire engagement ring

2. Elongated Stones

Although classic shapes are the most popular, you’ll find a golden opportunity with elongated fancy shapes. These stones are not only cheaper, but their shapes create the appearance of a larger surface area. Consider these stunning pear, oval and marquise rings and get more bang for your buck.

Pavé Halo & Shank Engagement Ring

Affordable engagement rings: pavé halo and shank engagement ring with a pear-cut center diamond

Yellow Gold Navette Leaf Halo Engagement Ring

Affordable engagement rings: yellow gold navette leaf halo engagement ring with an oval-cut center diamond.

Rose Gold Beaded Marquise Engagement Ring

Affordable engagement rings: rose gold beaded engagement with a marquise-cut center diamond.

3. Pavé The Way

Pavé rings consist of small diamonds encrusted on the band, making the band itself look like it’s made of diamond. This elaborate display of diamonds gives the ring a boost of extra sparkle at an affordable price, without needing to invest more in increasing the center stone’s carat size.

Yellow Gold Petite Pavé Cathedral Engagement Ring

Affordable engagement rings: yellow gold petite pavé cathedral engagement ring with round center diamond

Rose Gold Pavé Rope Engagement Ring

Affordable engagement rings: rose gold pavé rope engagement ring with round center diamond.

4. Well, Halo There

If you’re on a budget and want an affordable yet supersized sparkle, look no further than a halo! We recommend a cushion-cut stone paired with a pavé halo band. Alternatively, choose a clean trellis setting and let the halo do the sparkling.

White Gold Pavé Halo Engagement Ring (Cushion Center)

Affordable engagement rings: white gold pavé halo and shank engagement ring with a cushion-cut center diamond

Yellow Gold Trellis Halo Engagement Ring

Affordable engagement rings: yellow gold diamond-encrusted halo engagement ring with round center diamond.

5. Colored Gemstones

Gemstones have become an increasingly popular option when shopping for affordable engagement rings. If you’d like to venture away from a traditional all-diamond engagement ring, a gorgeous side-stone ring with marquise-shaped sapphires or a ruby three-stone ring will do the trick.

White Gold Vintage Diamond & Marquise Sapphire Engagement Ring

Affordable engagement rings: white gold diamond and sapphire engagement ring with round center diamond

Yellow Gold Ruby Three Stone Engagement Ring

Affordable engagement rings: yellow gold three-stone engagement ring with round center ruby and diamond side-stones.

Found your dream affordable ring? Check out the articles below to get more inspiration!

  1. Classic Minimalist Jewelry
  2. How Much To Spend On An Engagement Ring
  3. 11 Gorgeous & Affordable Engagement Rings
  4. How To Budget For An Affordable Engagement Ring

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Jarred Maram

Jarred is a writer by day and unofficial office ping pong champion

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hand sanitizer

Ring Cleaning Tips in the Age of COVID-19

With the sudden outbreak of COVID-19, keep reading for our best ring cleaning tips.

The global spread of COVID-19 has a number of people making changes to their daily habits, with many increasingly using hand sanitizer to minimize the risk of exposure. While hand sanitizer may do a good job protecting you, it may be affecting something else – your engagement ring. Scroll down for our best ring cleaning tips to keep your sparkler safe and COVID-free!

1. Cleaning Agents

Excessive exposure to cleaning agents can make finish on white gold wear a little faster. This won’t cause immediate damage. However, contact with cleaning agents like chlorine, bleach and antibacterial soap can break down the brilliance of the metals over time. So keep cleaning agents away from white gold sparklers to keep them dazzling to the max:

White Gold Pavé Rope Engagement Ring

White Gold Pavé Rope Engagement Ring - ring cleaning tips

White Gold Vintage Infinity Engagement Ring

White Gold Vintage Infinity Engagement Ring - ring cleaning tips

White Gold Diamond Three-Stone Ring

White Gold Diamond Three-Stone Ring - ring cleaning tips

2. Clean Smart, Not Hard

We’re not suggesting that you stop using hand sanitizer. Heath and hygiene come before bling! However, there are ways to stay clean and protect your precious sparkler. Avoid rubbing hand sanitizer or harsh cleaning products directly onto your ring. Instead, remove your ring, sanitize, dry your hands, then put one of these back on:

Rose Gold Pavé Adorned Engagement Ring

Rose Gold Pavé Adorned Engagement Ring - ring cleaning tips

Yellow Gold Graduated Halo Engagement Ring

Yellow Gold Graduated Halo Engagement Ring - ring cleaning tips

3. Bling Care

You should ideally clean your ring once a week. The best way is by soaking it in warm water and dish-washing soap. This will allow you to keep practicing good hygiene habits and avoid putting your ring in jeopardy. Soak up one these white, rose and yellow gold options:

White Gold Sleek Accent Engagement Ring

White Gold Sleek Accent Engagement Ring - ring cleaning tips

Rose Gold Shared Prong Marquise Side Stone Ring

Rose Gold Shared Prong Side Stone Ring - ring cleaning tips

Yellow Gold Bow-Tie Channel Set Ring

Yellow Gold Bow-Tie Channel Set Ring - ring cleaning tips

4. Gloves On

If you can’t remove your ring for any reason or don’t want to use hand sanitizer, don’t fret! We recommend that you wear a pair of gloves when doing any household cleaning.

White Gold Cable Solitaire Ring

White Gold Cable Solitaire Ring - ring cleaning tips

Yellow Gold Pavé Split Shank Ring

Yellow Gold Pavé Split Shank Ring - ring cleaning tips

Ready to rock a clean sparkler in 2020? Check out the articles below to get more inspiration!

Subscribe to our email list for access to secret sales, practical ring-buying tips, and $100 off your first purchase!

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Jarred Maram

Jarred is a writer by day and unofficial office ping pong champion

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home proposal ideas

Tips to Nail an At-Home Proposal

With National Proposal Day approaching, scroll down for some intimate home proposal ideas!

National Proposal Day is almost here and the sudden outbreak of COVID-19 may have people uncertain about their proposal plans. Not to worry, we’ve got you covered. Keep scrolling for some intimate home proposal ideas to sweep your fiancée-to-be off her feet while staying safe!

1. Travel Memories

If you had plans to travel and propose, why not put together a collection of slides highlighting some treasured travel moments you’ve shared in your journey together? These sparklers look good in any location:

White Gold Comfort Fit Solitaire Ring

White Gold Comfort Fit Solitaire Ring - home proposal ideas

Yellow Gold Navette Leaf Halo Ring

Yellow Gold Navette Leaf Halo Ring - home proposal ideas

2. Take a Walk

Take the road less traveled with an intimate stroll together. This great proposal option allows you to be alone while avoiding mass transportation during times of social distancing. So find the perfect view, get down on one knee and pop the question with one of these white or yellow gold options:

White Gold Pavé Split Shank Engagement Ring

White Gold Pavé Split Shank Engagement Ring - home proposal ideas

Yellow Gold Art Deco Diamond Engagement Ring

Yellow Gold Art Deco Diamond Engagement Ring - home proposal ideas

3. At-Home Fine Dining

Unlike the classic restaurant proposal, no need for you to make a reservation or talk to the manager to plan your perfect moment. Wine and dine your partner with a restaurant meal. Not only is it delicious, but they’ll love the extra effort!

White Gold Perfect Pavé Engagement Ring

White Gold Perfect Pavé Engagement Ring - home proposal ideas

Rose Gold Tapered Baguette Engagement Ring

Rose Gold Tapered Baguette Engagement Ring - home proposal ideas

4. Virtual Concert

Hire a local band to serenade your partner on Skype or FaceTime. Then, invite your friends and loved ones for a virtual cocktail reception to celebrate! Don’t forget to show off one of these sparklers while you’re online:

Yellow Gold Channel Set Cathedral Ring

Yellow Gold Channel Set Cathedral Ring - home proposal ideas

White Gold Three-Stone Round Ruby Ring

White Gold Three-Stone Round Ruby Ring - home proposal ideas

5. Hire a Celeb

Get in touch with your favorite celebrity to share a Cameo shout out and give yourselves not one, but two lifelong memories that will be spoken of for years to come. Heads up – Mandy Moore and Busy Philipps have joined Cameo and are donating all proceeds to support nonprofits such as ‘No Kid Hungry’.

Rose Gold Three Stone Diamond Infinity Ring

Rose Gold Three Stone Diamond Infinity Ring  - home proposal ideas

Ready to nail your proposal? Check out the articles below to get more inspiration!

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Jarred Maram

Jarred is a writer by day and unofficial office ping pong champion

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The Ultimate Guide for Choosing a Foolproof Jewelry Gift

Choosing a jewelry gift for your partner, made simple.

Buying a jewelry gift for your SO can be a stressful and slightly daunting task. We get it. After all, it’s a reminder of the love and commitment you have to each other, and you want to mark the occasion with something special. With so many options out there, you may not know where to begin. Not to worry, follow this guide and you’ll find a foolproof gift in no time.

1. Know Your Partner’s Preferences

First thing’s first. When it comes to a jewelry gift, you should always pay attention to your partner’s particular taste and style. Take notice of what she wears daily. Does she like to glam it up for special occasions? Or does she prefer to keep it straight up classic? These elegant diamond earring options can help you decide.

White Gold Four Prong Diamond Earrings

jewelry gift diamond earrings

White Gold Four Prong Diamond Stud Earrings

jewelry gift diamond stud earrings

2. Decide on a Category

There are many categories of jewelry to choose from. Some good options include earrings, bracelets and necklaces. If your partner’s ears are pierced, go for earrings. If not, then opt for a timeless bracelet or necklace instead. Sometimes it’s good to keep it simple with an all-occasion tennis bracelet or a pair of white gold earrings.

White Gold Four Prong Diamond Tennis Bracelet

jewelry gift four prong tennis bracelet

White Gold Inside Out Petite Diamond Hoops

jewelry gift - inside out petite diamond hoops

3. Choose a Trusted Brand

In general, purchasing your jewelry gift from a reliable brand whose quality you can vouch for is always better, even if it means spending a few bucks more. Remember, good quality doesn’t necessarily mean that you should be spending more! At James Allen, every piece has been carefully inspected by our team of expert gemologists and comes with a lifetime guarantee. So why not get your hands on a pair of beautiful earrings that we cover for life?

White Gold Freshwater Pearl & Diamond Drop Earrings

jewelry gift - white gold freshwater pearl

Yellow Gold Freshwater Pearl Drop Earrings

jewelry gift - yellow gold pearl drop earrings

4. Match the Jewelry Gift to the Occasion

A special occasion calls for a special jewelry gift, agreed? It helps engrain those treasured moments in your memory forever. Whether it’s an anniversary or Valentine’s Day, there’s something for every occasion. Surprise your partner on your next anniversary with an anniversary ring to celebrate another year of love and joy.

White Gold Five Stone Shared Prong Diamond Ring

white gold five stone shared prong diamond ring

White Gold Marquise Ruby & Diamond Pendant

When Valentine’s Day comes around, nail your gift with this necklace, sporting a stunning ruby red gemstone, perfect for the romantic occasion.

White Gold Marquise Ruby & Diamond Pendant

5. Finally, Make It Personal

Sometimes, you may find that the perfect jewelry gift lies in the little details. Think about engraving a note or your partner’s initials on a beautiful pavé ring. Not only will it make your gift that much more sentimental, but it will also show that you chose the piece especially for her.

White Gold Pavé Knife-Edge Lotus Band

White Gold Pavé Knife-Edge Lotus Band

White Gold Pavé Crossover Wedding Band

White Gold Pavé Crossover Wedding Band

Starting your gift search? Check out the articles below to get more inspiration!

Bought your jewelry gift? Share the love on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, or in the comments below!

Drop a hint to your SO with this pin:

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Jarred Maram

Jarred is a writer by day and unofficial office ping pong champion

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Cut is King: Why Carat Weight Matters Less Than You Think

Carat weight is NOT as big a deal as you think! The secret lies in the cut.

When it comes to engagement ring shopping, it’s all about go big or go home, right? Wrong. We’re here to put some common misconceptions regarding carat weight and size to sleep, so that you can buy an engagement ring sure to sweep your future ‘Boo’ off her feet!

1. Carat Cut: Why It Matters

Carat cut affects the visual appearance of the diamond and how much it sparkles. So diamonds with a better cut will look brighter. You’ll notice little visual difference, while saving yourself some cash. Win Win. Halo rings do a good job of maximizing sparkle, by having an outer ring of smaller diamonds that reflect light off the center stone, making it appear larger:

White Gold Graduated Halo Diamond Engagement Ring

White Gold Double Shank Halo Diamond Engagement Ring

2. Worth the Weight

As you can probably guess, the more the carat weight, the rarer and more valuable the diamond becomes. This also means your bling comes attached with bigger insurance policies, trade-in policies, and appraisals. Instead, opt for a diamond that’s just shy of the standard cutoff points (0.8 Carat), like these sparkling solitaire, pavé, and halo options. And don’t forget that you can ensure you’ve gotten the best diamond deal with our Diamond Price Match guarantee.

White Gold Comfort Fit Engagement Ring

Yellow Gold Petite Pavé Engagement Ring

Rose Gold Cushion Outline Pavé Engagement Ring

3. In Good Shape

Do you want a diamond that’s larger than life without breaking the bank? Choose an elongated shape such as oval, emerald or pear. These all tend to appear larger for their actual carat weight. A cushion cut style does a great job in maximizing carat weight, at the same time making the stone look larger:

Yellow Gold Cushion Halo Peridot and Diamond Ring

White Gold Pavé Halo Diamond Engagement Ring

4. Bigger Isn’t Always Better

Apart from focusing on carat weight and size, invest in a quality cut. This will maximize light reflection, meaning more sparkle and more dazzle. Remember, a small change in size can often mean a big difference in price! If you’re looking for maximum sparkle, choose a round, cushion or pear cut:

White Gold Pavé Halo & Shank Diamond Engagement Ring

White Gold Cushion Halo Split Shank Engagement Ring

White Gold Cross Prong Solitaire Engagement Ring

White Gold Cross Prong Solitaire Engagement Ring

5. So, Where Does That Leave You? 

Remember diamond specifications are not an exact science and you don’t have to perfect all 4 C’s! Without neglecting carat weight, color and clarity, focus on getting the perfect cut and you’re guaranteed to bag the perfect ring!

Starting your ring search? Check out the articles below to get more inspiration!

Subscribe to our email list for access to secret sales, practical ring-buying tips, and $100 off your first purchase!

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Jarred Maram

Jarred is a writer by day and unofficial office ping pong champion

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Diamond Terms: Your Essential Pocket Dictionary

Just starting your diamond search? This bite-sized dictionary of the most important diamond terms is a life-saver.

Keep this list of diamond terms open on a browser tab. Diamond terminology can be a headache. But hey, you’ve got to speak the language! We’ve created a list of the diamond terminology that will be most helpful to you. As you begin to ring-shop, this is THE list.

Good luck! Let’s start it off with the MOST important diamond terms: the 4 Cs:

CUT

How well-proportioned a diamond is.

Many consider cut to be the most important C, as a well-cut diamond will give off more sparkle than a less expertly-cut diamond. A well-cut diamond also hides color and imperfections better. Cut grades range from Good to Very Good to Ideal. James Allen also carries True Hearts™, a Super Ideal cut that displays perfect internal symmetry, optimal proportions, and the highest gem grading for cut and polish. (Psssst…less than 1% of diamonds qualify for the True Hearts™ title.)

Emerald-Cut Pavé Ring

COLOR

A grading system based on a diamond’s lack of color.

In general, more colorless diamonds are more valuable. While most diamonds have some degree of color, in many cases it can only be seen under specific viewing circumstances. Additionally, metal color choice can often affect a diamond’s perceived color.

Yellow Gold Milgrain Ring

CLARITY

The presence or absence of imperfections (or “inclusions” in gem-speak) in a diamond.

These inclusions can be found on the surface of the diamond (like chips) or inside the diamond (like clouds or crystals). Clarity is graded on a scale from “Included” (lowest) to “Flawless” (highest). See “Eye Clean” below for additional info.

CARAT

A measurement of a diamond’s weight.

Higher carat weight often correlates with larger size, but not always. Due to certain cuts’ specific proportions, sometimes a diamond of a higher weight can actually look smaller than one of a lower weight.

Vintage Oval Ring

COST (the 5th C)

Getting the most out of your ring budget!

To many people, this is actually the most important C! There are countless ways to get the most for your money, including opting for a lower clarity graded diamond, dropping color grades in a yellow or rose gold metal, opting for a lab diamond and buying just under the desired carat weight.

Extra-credit blog reading:
Tips & tricks on how to make your diamond look bigger while staying in-budget.

keeping the ring a secret hiding spot

SHAPE

The form in which a diamond is cut.

The most popular diamond shapes include round, princess, oval, cushion, and marquise. Don’t confuse shape (the diamond’s form) with cut (the diamond’s proportions)!

Tapered Heart-Shaped Ring

EYE-CLEAN

Whether or not a diamond’s imperfections are visible to the naked eye.

Higher clarity grades indicate that a diamond’s inclusions are visible only under professional magnification. These diamonds may offer good value; they’re less expensive while still lacking any visible flaws.

FACING UP WHITE

A diamond that may not be colorless, but which will look colorless to the naked eye in a setting.

In many cases, the color grade “I” and above will “face up white.” If you opt for a lower color-graded diamond, setting it in a warm metal will help mask its color.

Rose Gold Entwined Ring

EARTH-CREATED DIAMONDS

Diamonds that have been formed in the earth’s mantle under immense heat and pressure over millions of years.

Diamond Halo Pendant

LAB-CREATED DIAMONDS

Diamonds that are created in a laboratory, but are actually chemically and optically identical to traditional diamonds.

There are two ways to make lab-created diamonds:

1) “High Pressure, High Heat” mimics the pressure and heat of the earth to create a diamond.

2) “Chemical Vapor Deposition” builds up carbon vapor into a diamond within a low-pressure vacuum chamber.  

Lab-Created Diamond Pendant

Want to make your diamond knowledge a cut above? Check out the articles below!

Subscribe to our email list for access to secret sales, practical ring-buying tips, and $100 off your first purchase!

Jackie B.

Jackie B.

Jackie is a writer who loves a good deal, especially when it comes to jewelry!

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Wedding Ring Engraving Ideas

Make your day unforgettable with a free wedding ring engraving.

pavé wedding ring engraved with the inscription "finders keepers"

Amidst the hectic, public extravaganza that is your wedding, a meaningful wedding ring engraving gives the person you love a little extra attention. And DYK? You can engrave your wedding ring for free at checkout.

WEDDING RING ENGRAVINGS: WRITTEN IN THE STARS

But out of everything you could say, what’s the right inscription for you? Take a look below at our customers’ words for some amazing wedding ring engraving ideas!

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS:
A CLASSIC PHRASE

Tradition will never get old.

“LOVE IS A VERB”

White Gold Milgrain Wedding Ring

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS: pavé wedding ring engraved with "love is a verb"

“ALWAYS & FOREVER”

White Gold Curved Wedding Ring

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS: pavé wedding ring engraved with "always & forever"

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS:
YOUR SPECIAL DATE

Emphasize the importance of your big day with a custom inscription.

“I FOUND LOVE 3-14-19”

Yellow Gold Pavé Wedding Ring

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS: yellow gold pavé wedding ring engraved with "i found love"

“1.30.19 S&H”

Platinum Sapphire Arrow Wedding Ring

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS: sapphire and diamond wedding ring engraved with wedding date and initials

“-Alfonso 2019-“

Platinum Sunburst Wedding Ring

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS: diamond wedding ring engraved with "Alfonso 2019"

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS:
SHORT & SWEET

With these initial ring inscriptions, you two will know exactly what you mean.

“4EVA MY LTM”

Rose Gold Pavé Edged Wedding Ring

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS: rose gold pavé wedding ring engraved with initials

“ADM”

Yellow Gold Thin Channel-Set Wedding Ring

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS: yellow gold channel-set wedding ring engraved with initials

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS:
GET GOOFY

Why hide it? You’re adorable.

“MY CATLADY2”

White Gold Cushion Pavé Wedding Ring

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS: pavé wedding ring engraved with "my catlady2"

“DO NOT REMOVE”

White Gold Round and Marquise Wedding Ring

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS: wedding ring engraved with "do not remove"

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS:
GET ROMANTIC

Melt each other’s hearts with a sweet ring engraving.

“I KNEW I’D MARRY YOU”

Platinum Matching Filigree Wedding Ring

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS: vintage wedding ring engraved with "i knew i'd marry you"

“Forever and Ever, Amen”

White Gold Engraved Channel-Set Wedding Ring

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS: princess-cut channel-set wedding ring engraved with "forever and ever, amen."

“TO MY WIFE”

White Gold Paisley Surprise Wedding Ring

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS: vintage wedding ring engraved with "to my wife"

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS:
FAVORITE LYRICS

Inscribe the lyrics of the first song you’ll dance to as a married couple!

“COME AWAY WITH ME”

Platinum Pavé Bypass Wedding Ring

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS: offset wedding ring engraved with "come away with me"

“AMORE MIO”

Platinum Wide Channel-Set Wedding Ring

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS: channel-set wedding ring engraved with "amore mio"

Searching for more wedding ring engraving ideas? Read more below!

Obsessing over one (or more) of the wedding ring engravings in this post? Share the love on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, or in the comments below!

Pin & share these wedding ring engraving ideas:

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Rachel Hoar

Rachel is an unabashed linguistics fanatic who can identify the ancient Greek root of any word. She promises not to spray you with Windex.

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10 Ways To Lose Your Ring: Why You Need Jewelry Insurance

Sometimes life just…happens. That’s why there’s jewelry insurance.

Jewelry insurance blog: image of a rose gold solitaire engagement ring and a rose gold wedding ring.

These customer experiences are proof that jewelry insurance is a must. No one is safe from life’s great ring hazards, like fishing expeditions or golden retrievers. These 10 fiasco-filled customer stories prove it!

Jewelry mishaps are way too common. Luckily, James Allen has partnered with Jewelers Mutual to provide both warranties against damage AND comprehensive jewelry insurance – so you can be protected against wear-and-tear, loss, theft, or extensive damage. 

You know, just in case (HEAVEN FORBID) what happened to these customers, happens to you. 

So, when does jewelry insurance come in handy?

1. WHEN YOU’VE GOT THE WORST LUCK

Get. Jewelry insurance. At. Checkout. Do we have to spell it out for you?

“I was going to propose the following day. I thought of getting insurance, but I planned to do it after dinner with my family. 2 hours after coming back home, my house was broken into and the ring was gone.
– Danial K.

2. WHEN YOU JUST LOSE STUFF

If you can’t keep track of your stuff, we’ve got your – hey, where are my keys?

“My husband lost his wedding band, again. This site made it so easy to reorder. I will use James Allen again when he loses it next time.
– Genevieve F.



3. WHEN YOUR HINDSIGHT’S 20-20

Protect your sparkle & sip your beachy margaritas worry-free.

“Unfortunately, I lost my original ring on vacation (get that insurance!). But…my new ring is AMAZING!!!!!”
– Alison R.

4. WHEN YOU CATCH…AND RELEASE

Active lifestyles = more lost rings. 

“I bought the same ring twice when my husband lost the first one on a fishing trip. He loved it so much he wanted the exact same one the second time.”
– Shellie M.

5. WHEN YOUR PETS GET INVOLVED

Got pets? Get insurance.

“My original engagement ring was eaten by my dog.
– Consuela V.

6. WHEN YOU’RE A BIT ABSENT-MINDED

Let us worry about your ring, so you can keep your mind on the proposal.

“The ring was in my briefcase, which was stolen by a taxi driver in the ride from the Rome airport so I didn’t get to propose at the Trevi Fountain as I had planned.”
– George D.

7. WHEN THE PRODIGAL RING RETURNS

From normal wear-and-tear to some more…um…serious damage, jewelry insurance makes sure your sparkle is recoverable.

“I lost my engagement ring a few weeks ago in Dublin (Ireland), but luckily enough I found it again. Unfortunately, my ring did sustain quite a bit of damage. I sent the ring back to James Allen for repairs – it came back like brand new and as sparkly as ever!”
– Katie M.

8. WHEN YOU TRY TO BE RESPONSIBLE BUT…

Sometimes it slips your mind.

“My husband was trying to get my ring resized for me and forgot to bring it into the house overnight and his car was broken into and the thieves got away with my ring. I was devastated!”
– Jane B.

9. WHEN REDECORATING BECOMES AN EXTREME SPORT

Daily life isn’t risk-free!

“My wedding ring turned out perfectly. When it was damaged (moving furniture) we were able to send it back to James Allen to be repaired for free.”
– Jared F.

10. WHEN THE STAR OF THE SHOW GOES MISSING

Center stone issues? We’ve got insurance for that.

“My wife lost the center stone on her engagement ring. She was very sentimental about replacing it. When I found a new stone, I felt like I was proposing to my wife all over again!!”
– Bill T.

Searching for your forever ring? You’ll love these popular ring styles:

Obsessing over one (or more) of the engagement rings in this post? Share the love on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, or in the comments below!

Shout out your style with this pin:

Subscribe to our email list for access to secret sales, practical ring-buying tips, and $100 off your first purchase!

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Rachel Hoar

Rachel is an unabashed linguistics fanatic who can identify the ancient Greek root of any word. She promises not to spray you with Windex.

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Lab-Created Diamonds vs. Moissanite

Two budget-friendly stone choices – but one clearly comes out on top.

Loose princess-cut lab-created diamonds and loose round lab-created diamonds on a pink background

In their search for that perfect sparkler, ring shoppers who want to maximize their budgets inevitably end up checking all the different options. Moissanite has historically been a good option for wallet-wary shoppers, but it’s also worth noting that the surge in lab-created offerings and the significant lowering of retail prices have made lab-created diamonds an excellent, wallet-friendly option.

So yes – at first, lab-created diamonds and moissanite can seem quite similar… and this can be an extremely perplexing issue! But you’ll soon find that they’re not similar. At all.

To put it bluntly: 

LAB-CREATED DIAMONDS = REAL DIAMONDS

MOISSANITE = NOT DIAMOND

“Ok,” you say.

“Tell me more.”

Lab-created diamonds are real diamonds!
They’re chemically, structurally, and visually the same as the earth-created diamonds we all know and love. The only difference is that the high-pressure, high-temperature, diamond-creating conditions that usually take place deep underground are instead performed in a lab. Because it’s easier to create lab conditions than to mine diamonds underground, lab-created diamonds can be significantly more affordable than earth-created diamonds.

Moissanite isn’t a diamond, it’s a silicon carbide!
It’s synthesized in a lab under a thermal growing process. This silicon carbide crystal is a completely different material that looks very similar to diamond but is still an imitation of the real thing. Moissanite is often marketed as a cheaper alternative to diamond, but it’s an inferior option given the pricing and availability of ‘real’ lab-created diamonds. Moissanite doesn’t have anywhere near the same brilliance or clarity as a real diamond, and it has none of the fire.

Loose princess-cut lab-created diamonds and loose round lab-created diamonds on a blue background

Let’s size up lab-created diamonds and moissanite over 6 traits:

1. COLOR PERMANENCE

LAB DIAMONDS
A diamond’s color is everlasting. The lab-created diamond you buy today will look exactly the same when you eventually pass it down to your grandchildren.

MOISSANITE
Moissanite exhibits “thermochromism,” meaning that it is sensitive to color change at temperatures above 150° F (65 C). These are usually temporary, but these heat-sensitive color changes can sometimes be permanent.


2. COLOR

LAB DIAMONDS
Colorless to extremely colorful
. Diamonds can exhibit a full range of colors, from intense fancy colors (canary, purple, pink) to completely colorless.

MOISSANITE
Moissanites usually display warmer tints, often exhibiting slight yellowish or greenish hues.


3. SPARKLE

LAB DIAMONDS
Lab-created diamonds have a refractive index of 2.42 and their faceting pattern returns light remarkably. The combination of their brilliance (reflected white light), fire (refracted color) and scintillation (surface sparkle) give diamonds their unparalleled true sparkle. Brilliant and sparkly!

MOISSANITE
Moissanite actually has a higher refractive index than diamonds, at 2.65, and their faceting pattern is different, leading their brilliance to display a “rainbow effect.” The rainbow effect tends to make moissanite look fake to the well-trained eye, and is especially noticeable under natural light and in larger stones.


4. IDEAL SIZE

LAB DIAMONDS
Lab-created diamonds sparkle the same at any carat weight. Go big, go small, go whatever you like.

MOISSANITE
Moissanite’s exhibits a “rainbow effect” which can look fake and is especially noticeable in larger moissanite stones. Stick with smaller sizes.


5. WEAR-AND-TEAR

LAB DIAMONDS
Diamond is the hardest stone (it has the highest rating of 10 on Moh’s hardness scale). It’s not susceptible to scratching.

MOISSANITE
Extremely hard (9.25 on Moh’s hardness scale), but is still more susceptible to scratching than diamonds.


6. COST

LAB DIAMONDS
Diamonds are usually the more expensive choice. However, lab-created diamonds are the affordable diamond option, allowing you to get a 30% larger stone for the same cost as earth-created diamonds.

MOISSANITE
Moissanites are a cheaper option, though buyers must take into account the lifetime costs of maintenance like jeweler cleanings. Moissanite’s value is mostly sentimental.


The Conclusion:

We at James Allen believe the overall resiliency, beauty, and affordability of lab-created diamonds make them #1 choice for budget-friendliness. Moissanite simply doesn’t compare.

Big, bright, and beautiful!

And now for our picks: pieces that show off all the sparkle of lab-created diamonds. And after you’ve chosen your lab-created diamond, ensure you’ve gotten the best deal by using our Diamond Price Match Guarantee and by chatting with our legendary customer service team.

Three-Stone Emerald-Cut Engagement Ring

White gold emerald-cut diamond three-stone engagement ring with lab-created diamonds

“This is the most sparkly ring I’ve ever seen. I feel like a million bucks!”
– Teresa T.

Pear-Cut Halo Engagement Ring

White gold halo engagement ring with a pear-cut lab-created diamond

“I love my pear-shaped ring!! It is simple yet not understated at all.”
– Andy A.

Bow-Tie Princess-Cut Engagement Ring

White gold channel-set engagement ring with a princess-cut lab-created diamond

“A showstopper ring. It’s glam, class, and elegance all in one.”
– Swanson J.

Halo Pendant

Milgrain halo diamond pendant set with a round lab-created diamond

“The halo makes the center stone look much much bigger. It is very impressive.”
-Pi-Yu C.

Scalloped Pendant

Round six-prong diamond pendant set with a round lab-created diamond

“This is the best purchase I’ve ever made online!”
– Bing W.

Lab-created diamonds caught your eye? Read on to hone your diamond expertise!

Subscribe to our email list for access to secret sales, practical ring-buying tips, and $100 off your first purchase!


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Rachel Hoar

Rachel is an unabashed linguistics fanatic who can identify the ancient Greek root of any word. She promises not to spray you with Windex.

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Lookin’ Sharp: View Diamonds in 360° HD

Get to know your diamond really up close and personal.

Shopping for a diamond is the beginning of a beauuuuuutiful relationship. In our humble opinion, the best and most comfortable way to get to know your diamond up close and personal is our 360° Diamond Display Technology. 

*trumpet fanfare*

It’s kind of a big deal.

While it’s pretty easy to find diamond certificates most everywhere online, relying on them alone is settling for uncertainty. Identical certificates can describe very different diamonds – each stone is unique and one will always be better. A 360° HD view of the diamond itself shows you more than a certificate ever could. You’ll be able to gain a comprehensive understanding of every aspect of your stone, so you can choose the best diamond with confidence.

So why’s our technology unique?

CLEAR AS DAY

  • “When I saw the diamond and the ring, I realized that the 360° view is a much more elaborate inspection than I ever did in any store.”
    Pranav S.

In order to make the most informed purchase possible, you as a diamond consumer deserve to be able to inspect every detail of your stone. Via our 360° HD Diamond Display, you can view everything online down to the tiniest inclusion. Every aspect of your diamond’s shape, cut, color, and clarity is on display. 

READY FOR YOUR CLOSE UP

  • “Seeing real enlarged diamonds to pick from with technology to view them in vivid detail made shopping online for a diamond easy.”
    – Scott R.

We don’t just zoom. We SuperZoom! All images are displayed in the highest definition possible – up to 40x larger than life.

GIVE IT A SPIN

  • “The HD, 360° view of the diamonds was a useful tool to really understand what I was buying.”
    – Piero Z.

This is an interactive view – not a video or a still photo. You control the spin so you can watch your diamond sparkle naturally, just as it would on your finger.

TAKE YOUR TIME

  • “This was my first time buying a ring online. The experience was great! I could look and browse with no pressure.”
    – William M.

Busy schedule? Choose your diamond on your own time – no need to drive anywhere or set up a single in-person meeting. You don’t have to rely on memory, either; you can view your diamond online in as much detail and as often as you want.

A PERSONAL TOUCH

  • “The service is top-notch! If you have a question you can have an answer within minutes.
    – Rich T.

As you view diamonds in 360° HD, don’t forget that our in-house experts are close by! Click the “Chat With a Diamond Expert” button to immediately get in touch online with an experienced, non-commissioned representative who will answer your questions and give all sorts of professional suggestions.

Find your diamond on your own time and on your best terms by inspecting it via our 360° Diamond Display Technology. Once you view your diamond online in interactive HD, it’ll be hard to rely on anything else (or so we’ve heard!).

Inspired by our 360° Diamond Display Technology?

Ready to find your perfect ring?

Searching for the one? View our 10 most popular solitaire engagement rings!

Read on…

Read ‘em and reap: learn how our Real-Time Diamond Inspection works, get engagement ring engraving ideas, find her engagement ring style, and grab summer proposal tips!

Obsessing over one (or more) of the engagement rings in this post? Share the love on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, or in the comments below!

Pin this to keep tabs on your diamond & setting wish-lists:

Subscribe to our email list for access to secret sales, practical ring-buying tips, and $100 off your first purchase!

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Rachel Hoar

Rachel is an unabashed linguistics fanatic who can identify the ancient Greek root of any word. She promises not to spray you with Windex.

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Diamond Price Match: Our Competitive Pledge

Worried about overpaying for your diamond? Don’t be. Our Diamond Price Match guarantee has got you covered.

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After weeks or even months of painstaking research, you’ve finally found the perfect, most exquisite diamond on JamesAllen.com. Congratu…

Hold up – is that one of our competitors offering the exact same diamond at a lower price? 🧐

Well, yes and no.

There’s no such thing as ‘the exact same diamond’; each and every diamond is unique and one of a kind. It’s only on paper that two diamonds can be considered comparable if they share identical or near-identical characteristics (think cut, color, clarity, and carat).

If you’ve found a similarly spec’d diamond for less, we may be able to match the price…

Meet Your Diamond Price Match

diamond price match guarantee

At James Allen, we strive to offer superior diamonds at highly competitive prices. In fact, we’re so confident that you won’t find a better deal anywhere else that we’ve introduced a Diamond Price Match Guarantee. This is to ensure you’re getting the best value for money, without sacrificing diamond quality or any other aspect of the shopping experience.

diamond price match certificate

OK, so how does it work?

For starters, we’ll need to determine whether the competitor’s diamond is eligible. It must, among other things, have the same characteristics as the James Allen diamond, be in stock and available for immediate purchase, and come with a GIA grading report. We recommend reading through our complete list of requirements before applying for a Diamond Price Match.

Same Ice, Same Price

diamond price match request

Requesting a Diamond Price Match is as easy as contacting us by phone, chat, or email. You’ll need to provide valid proof of the competitor’s offer such as a link to their website or some other form of advertisement. If we determine that the diamond meets our requirements, we’ll match the price – no questions asked!

Game, Set, Diamond Price Match!

Seen a comparable diamond for less? Request a price match today and enjoy sparkle that’s beyond compare.

You can’t afford not to pin this!

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Subscribe to our email list for access to secret sales, practical ring-buying tips, and $100 off your first purchase!

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Jonny Hart

Jonny is passionate about puns, adores alliteration, and finds diamonds positively facet-nating! Since joining James Allen, he has written the word 'sparkle’ 9,732 times and counting.

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Diamond Pendants: The Essential Guide

Designed to be worn close to your heart, diamond pendants are among the most romantic gifts you can give or receive.

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Diamond Pendants: Necks Appeal

Few accessories have the ability to light up an outfit quite like diamond pendants. They’re perfectly positioned for maximum impact and come in a range of eye-catching styles.

Whether you’re after a piece that complements your everyday jewelry collection or a glamorous gift for special occasions, our guide has got you covered. So pop on some peppy music and get your jewelry browse on.

Browse Preset Pendants

Diamond Pendants: Dangling Designs

Looking to treat your SO to a diamond pendant? Consider which style will best suit her personality. For the classic woman, a solitaire pendant adds a touch of refinement to any outfit.

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Diamond Scroll Key

If it’s a statement piece you’re after, key pendants are a popular choice, along with nature-inspired motifs such as hearts, flowers, and butterflies.

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Pavé Diamond Butterfly

If, on the other hand, she’s the artistic/creative type, a more whimsical or abstract design might be preferable.

Traditional

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Wire Diamond

Solitaire diamond pendants are the ideal way to showcase a single stone. Opt for a prong mount if you wish to highlight the stone while concealing the metal behind it.

Pro tip: Less is more when it comes to choosing a diamond solitaire pendant. Go for a simple setting and pair it with a good quality diamond, focusing on clarity and cut for extra shine.

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Round Halo Cluster

For a more contemporary look, choose a bezel-set diamond pendant that surrounds the centerpiece with a thin band of metal.

Pavé-Set Frame

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Princess Cut Pavé-Set Frame

Pavé-set frame draws more attention to the setting itself. It’s often accented with ornate filigree borders.

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Round Cut Pavé-Set Frame

Pavé Bail

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Pavé Bail Diamond

Pavé bail features diamond detail on the metal loop that connects the pendant to the chain.

Design Your Own Pendant

Diamond Pendants: Don’t Leave Us Hanging!

All the women who are into pendants! Let us know which neck candy you’re sweet on in the comments below or on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, or Snapchat.

Find out which pendant styles will be the necks big thing for 2019 and see why diamond cluster is setting hearts aflutter.

Keep this pendant inspo firmly within your clasp (Pin it!)

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Subscribe to our email list for access to secret sales, practical ring-buying tips, and $100 off your first purchase!

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Jonny Hart

Jonny is passionate about puns, adores alliteration, and finds diamonds positively facet-nating! Since joining James Allen, he has written the word 'sparkle’ 9,732 times and counting.

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Amazing Amethyst: The February Birthstone

Purple it up with an accessory made of amethyst, the February birthstone.

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If you’re considering purchasing an amethyst, now’s a perfect time. Not only is it the February birthstone, but it’s a great way to usher in a bolder, more unconventional new year.

Check out these plum-colored stunners in 360° HD.

The February Birthstone: Purple Reign

Prince was famously known as “the Purple One”, but everyone from Katy Perry to Sofia Vergara is posing in purple on the red carpet.

Whether you believe the February birthstone has the power to promote inner peace or you simply like the way it looks, you’ll find the allure of these hand-picked amethysts impossible to resist.

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Amethyst Stud Earrings

These richly hued amethyst stud earrings exude understated elegance, making them a classic choice for your special someone.

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Amethyst and Diamond Butterfly Necklace

Four gorgeous amethysts come together to create a butterfly necklace as intricate and delicate as its namesake.

The February Birthstone: A Purple Past

The February birthstone is as rich with symbolism as it is purple. The ancient Greeks and Romans believed that the grape-colored stone could prevent a person from getting drunk, thereby promoting clarity of mind. However, it is the legend of St. Valentine, who wore an amethyst ring while performing illicit marriages, that led to the modern-day practice of giving amethyst jewelry on Valentine’s Day.

The stone itself is a type of quartz mineral, ranging in hue from exquisite lilac to opulent plum. It pairs well with most metal types, complements every skin tone, and can elevate any outfit.

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Amethyst and Diamond Studded Halo Ring

This whimsical cocktail ring features a diamond studded halo that complements the bezel-set center gemstone, adding a stunning pop of color to your everyday look.

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East-West Emerald Cut Amethyst and Diamond Halo Bar Ring

This east-west emerald-cut bar ring straddles the wearer’s finger, creating a charming birthstone bridge. Perfect for the dressiest occasions or as an everyday statement piece.

The February Birthstone: In Pursuit of Purple

Do you see yourself rocking the purple in 2019? Vio-let us know in the comments below or on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, or Snapchat.

While you’re at it, check out our other birthstone guides:
January GarnetMarch AquamarineApril DiamondMay EmeraldJuly RubySeptember SapphireNovember CitrineDecember Topaz

Keep amethyst at the top of your list (Pin it!)

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Subscribe to our email list for access to secret sales, practical ring-buying tips, and $100 off your first order!

Editor’s Note – This post was originally published January 2018. It was updated February 2019.

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Jonny Hart

Jonny is passionate about puns, adores alliteration, and finds diamonds positively facet-nating! Since joining James Allen, he has written the word 'sparkle’ 9,732 times and counting.

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Engagement Ring Etiquette: 5 Big Questions

The results are in! We surveyed 2,800 women about engagement ring etiquette – what are the rules for getting engaged, and which of those rules are meant to be broken?

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Engagement Ring Etiquette: “The 2 Months’ Salary Rule”

There’s an age-old myth that you’re supposed to decide how much to spend on the engagement ring based on how much you’d earn in two months. However, when we actually asked, 69% of women disagreed. The engagement ring etiquette consensus: a ring should cost whatever you can afford – the relationship is the most important thing.

engagement ring etiquette 2 months salary

Read on: How Much to SpendHow to BudgetHow to Make Your Ring Look Bigger

Engagement Ring Etiquette: Forgo the Flash Mob

It might be best to stay away from dramatic and/or jumbo-tron proposals; 56% of women surveyed said they prefer an intimate proposal with just the two of you, while 28% said they want something small with close friends and family. Only 4% told us they’d rather go big than go home.

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Read on: How to Propose10 Essential Proposal TipsProposal Inspiration

Engagement Ring Etiquette: Who Proposes?

So when it comes to heterosexual partnerships, are guys always supposed to be the ones to pop the question? In this modern age, survey says… mostly yes. 79% of women said the guy should propose. On the other hand, 12% said they have no problem with a woman proposing to the man, while 9% said they’d only propose if their guys waited around for too long.

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Read on: Winter Proposal IdeasSummer Proposal IdeasUnique Places to Propose

Engagement Ring Etiquette: Have Your Sparkly Say

Collaboration is key! 84% of women surveyed said they’d be happy to drop hints, provide pictures, or tell friends/family about the engagement ring they prefer. Might as well make it a date night activity; 15% of women surveyed said they want to look at rings