Top Engagement Ring Tips From the Experts

Top Engagement Ring Tips From the Experts

Is it time to start ring shopping? Congratulations! Buying an engagement ring and gearing up for the proposal is truly an exciting time. Don’t know where to start? Scroll down for expert advice!

Top Engagement Ring Tips

We sat down with Sarah, one of James Allen’s senior customer service reps, to talk about some common questions she encounters on a daily basis from customers. Whether it’s about buying an engagement ring or making proposal plans, read on for her top engagement ring tips and more!

1. Shape Your Thoughts

When you’re just getting started, we recommend thinking about shape preference. ‘A round center stone is never going to go out of style, and it is by far the most popular shape,’ explains Sarah. If you don’t know where to begin, play it safe and go for a round center stone. Oval cut and pear-shaped diamonds are a great choice if you prefer something a bit more trendy.

18K White Gold Pavé Halo And Shank Diamond Engagement Ring (Pear Center)
14K White Gold Three Stone Pear Shaped Engagement Ring

2. Timing Is Everything

When you’re thinking about the proposal, consider timelines and how long it takes to make your ring. ‘I always remind our customers to allow themselves enough time because all our rings are made to order,’ adds Sarah. So, remember, whatever you choose, give yourself a few weeks before getting your hands on these gorgeous pieces.

18K Yellow Gold Flat Edged Diamond Solitaire Engagement Ring
18K Yellow Gold Bypass Engagement Ring

3. Let’s Talk Budget

You may have heard about the ‘three-month salary rule’, but we believe you should determine how much you can comfortably spend overall. There are no set rules when it comes to how much money you should spend on an engagement ring. Keep in mind that the price tags of an engagement ring can vary significantly, so it’s important to choose one that fits your budget.

‘Once we know what style the customer wants, the best-sellers are a good reference,’ adds Sarah. We have a wide selection of stunning options for every kind of budget and won’t break the bank.

18K Yellow Gold 1.5mm Comfort Fit Engagement Ring
14K Yellow Gold Petite Pavé Engagement Ring

Looking to sparkle and save? We teamed up with proposal expert Stacy Stahl to cover all your ring budget questions, including:

  1. How much should you spend on a ring?  
  2. Does bigger mean better? 
  3. How can you save money? 
  4. What’s the average amount spent?

Listen to her tips in the video below to find the best bling for your buck:

4. A Two-Way Street

Engagement ring shopping is usually a two-way street. ‘You should always keep your partner in the loop and follow their lead’ advises Sarah. Your partner is going to be wearing the ring every day, so make sure they love it! If your significant other hints at something other than a classic solitaire, try something different like these vintage-inspired engagement rings.

14K White Gold Regal Frame Diamond Engagement Ring
14K White Gold Art Deco Inspired Floral Halo Engagement Ring

FAQs

What is most important when picking an engagement ring?

The most important characteristics you should pay attention to when buying an engagement ring are the diamond’s cut, color, weight, and clarity. A diamond’s price and appearance depend on these characteristics.

How can I make my engagement ring special?

There are many different and beautiful ways to make an engagement ring special. At JamesAllen.com we offer you the opportunity to design your dream ring using our Ring Studio.  And for an extra personal touch, you can also engrave a meaningful message (for free) on the inside of your engagement ring. 

How do you properly wear an engagement ring?

Despite there being no right or wrong way to wear an engagement ring, engagement rings are usually worn on the left ring finger. This is the most common choice, and in many western cultures, the wedding ring finger is traditionally said to be the fourth finger on the left hand. However, the “ring finger” is not the same in all cultures and countries. 

What should you not do when buying an engagement ring?

When it comes to engagement ring shopping, many people often make the same mistakes. To make sure both the engagement ring and the proposal moment are close to being perfect, it’s so important to keep these in mind:

  • Set a budget 
  • Do your homework and get all the information you can 
  • Check your partner’s ring size partner
  • Consider your partner’s personal style. 
  • Plan the proposal  

Looking for real-life proposal inspiration? Take a look at our customers’ engagement moments from all over the world.

You can also contact us if you need help finding your dream engagement ring. Our diamond and jewelry experts at JamesAllen.com are always available to answer any questions you may have. We look forward to assisting you!

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

Tarryn Snoyman

Tarryn is a content writer by day and a criminology enthusiast by night.

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How To Stack & Layer Your Jewelry

When it comes to beautiful jewelry, the more the merrier!

Stackable Rings

How To Embrace More Is More

Minimalism is out and maximalism is IN! We may have adopted the phrase ‘less is more’, but layering more necklaces or stacking more rings offers a unique way to show off your style! Starting your day by throwing on several necklaces is a great way to achieve that chic but effortless look. By stacking a few stylish rings on your fingers, you can create an eye-catching ensemble in a matter of minutes. In this blog, we are going to explain why sometimes more is more!

Tips On How To Stack Your Jewelry

Try to keep your metals the same

When stacking or layering your jewelry pieces, it’s a great idea to keep the metals the same. Wearing pieces that are uniform in color will ensure that your look is cohesive and pleasing to the eye. Wearing gold rings with gold necklaces, for example, will tie your whole outfit together beautifully!

Stack jewelry

Mix and match different shapes

When you’re stacking or layering jewelry, you have the freedom to have fun and experiment with silhouettes and shapes! Mixing different shapes within your jewelry will give off an eclectic and colorful touch to your outfit. And if that isn’t what you’re going for, you can match your jewelry shapes and keep things consistent. That will keep the lines and silhouettes of your pieces neat and tidy!

Add different lengths

When selecting which necklaces to use for layering, choose ones with varying lengths! Not only does this help with tangled chains, it gives you the chance to show off each of your pendants individually! Even wearing a chain without a pendant will help your other pieces shine! Tiering your necklaces is the perfect way to add a personal touch to your pieces- all while creating dimension.

Stacking Different Jewelry Tips & Tricks

How To Stack Bracelets

Stacking bracelets is an easy and fun way to add a dash of fun to any ensemble! To make sure things don’t appear too cluttered or disorganized, place your tighter bracelets closer to your hand and your looser or wider bracelets behind them. This works when you wear bracelets of different sizes and thicknesses. When wearing bracelets that are all thin, do as you please! And when stacking bracelets that are all thick, try not to wear more than 2 or 3 on one wrist.

How To Layer & Stack Necklaces

If you’re new to layering necklaces, start off with the following: Wear a choker at around 14 inches, a chain at 16 inches, and three pendant necklaces at 18, 20, and 22 inches- all together! This is a simple and easy-to-remember method to create an alluring tiered look. Once you discover what looks best to you, feel free to mix things up! With so many different chains, pendants, and lengths to choose from, the world is your oyster.

How To Stack Rings

Stacking rings is like an artform! Try wearing a couple of stackable rings with one prominent statement ring. Be sure not to clutter them on just one or two fingers- spread them out! To get a playful but sophisticated look, play around with different stones, shapes, and symbols. Wear standard sized rings and then smaller rings halfway down your finger to elevate your everyday look. But remember- when pairing thick rings with thin ones, always place the thicker rings closer to the base of the finger so the thinner ones don’t appear squished!

  • Stackable Rings
  • 14K Yellow Gold Diamond Starburst Ring
  • 14K White Gold Deep V Diamond Ring
  • 14K Yellow Gold Peeking Diamond Ring
  • 14K Yellow Gold Woven Ring

How To Stack Stack Earrings

Stacking earrings are all the rage- and for good reason! If you want to get the look but are in doubt, stick to the cascading rule. The rule suggests that you keep your larger and more dangly pieces at the bottom of your ear (around your earlobe, for example), and have your smaller studs and hugging earrings higher up. This ascension gives the effect of a clean and balanced order to your pieces.

Stacking & Layering Jewelry: Get These Looks

Stacking jewelry

To get this look, place a minimalist bracelet further down on your wrist. Pair that with a paperclip bracelet and a tennis bracelet, and you have a beautiful ensemble that mixes shapes, thicknesses, and materials.

Stackable Ring with Necklaces

To achieve this minimal layered look, simply follow the aforementioned necklace tiering tip. Pair an 18-inch chain like this one with a longer chain and pendant of the same metal, and you’re done! It’s a foolproof way to add dimension to any look.

FAQs

1. How do you stack rings nicely?

Go thick to thin! Wear thicker rings at the bottom of your finger and thinner ones closer to the top. Not only does this elongate your fingers, it makes sure that no ring gets overshadowed by another. And remember to add some flair to both of your hands- balance is key!

2. How many bracelets are too many?

While we believe that more is merrier, sometimes there is such a thing as too much. When wearing thinner, daintier bracelets, limit yourself to 6 or 7. When mixing thicker bracelets with thin ones, try not to wear more than 5 on one hand. Wearing too many bracelets can be uncomfortable and cumbersome. Three per wrist is generally the sweet spot!

3. Can you wear bracelets on both wrists?

Totally! Wearing several bracelets on one wrist and only one or two on the other can create a nicely balanced look. Especially when they match your outfit, bracelets on both hands create the perfect accessories.

Bracelets

To Wrap Up

On the days when you want to elevate your look in a matter of minutes, layering your jewelry is your secret weapon! Sometimes, the more jewelry you wear, the more stylish you feel! And the best part? There is no right or wrong way to do it. If you want an eclectic and energetic look, layering can help you achieve that! If you want a more sleek and clean look, layering can do that for you too!
Remember, it’s all about experimenting, enjoying, and showing off your personal style. Don’t forget to sign up for our email list to keep updated on more tips and tricks and even $100 off your first order!

Rachel Glassman

Rachel is fond of the written word and the moving image- and will talk about both with anyone who will listen!

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Wedding Rings for Women: A Buying Guide

While popping the question, and the engagement ring that goes with it, can get the bulk of the attention, the wedding ring is just as important. A crucial part of the wedding ceremony and a symbol of your everlasting love and commitment, you want to make sure the wedding ring you choose is perfect.

From different delicious metals, sparkling diamonds and gemstones, and numerous styles, choosing the right wedding ring can be overwhelming. That’s where we come in! Read on to find out everything you need to know about getting the perfect wedding ring.

Wedding rings for women

What Is A Wedding Ring?

So what IS a wedding ring? While the engagement ring is what you wear when you are intended to be married, the wedding ring is what you exchange during the ceremony and what you wear once you are officially married.

What Does A Wedding Ring Symbolize?

A wedding ring marks the love between you and your partner and is a symbol to the world of your commitment to each other that you wear and see everyday.

Your wedding ring is emblematic of your wedding vows, a beautiful reminder of the meaningful words you said to your partner on that special day.

The Difference Between A Wedding Ring And a Wedding Band

This one is easy, there isn’t one! Wedding rings and wedding bands are the same things. The terms are used interchangeably and both refer to the ring you exchange during your wedding ceremony to symbolize your commitment to your partner.

Wedding Rings For Women

Simple wedding rings

Many people prefer a simple wedding ring for women, such as a plain gold band style or a dainty wedding ring. This can be due to religious customs, personal style, or simply to match their engagement ring. This classic, clean style is also great if you have smaller hands.

14K White Gold 2mm Knife Edge Women's Wedding Ring

Diamond Wedding Rings

A diamond wedding ring is the perfect way to increase the sparkle of your engagement ring and show off your personal style. Eternity rings are a great way to go if you love endless sparkle!

Just as the name says, eternity rings offer eternal shine through diamonds that go all the way around the band, giving you the ultimate bling from every angle.

14K Yellow Gold Trellis Lab-Created Diamond Eternity Ring (5 CTW F-G / VS2-SI1)

If you opted out of an engagement ring or opted for a simpler engagement ring, then a diamond wedding ring is the perfect opportunity to add bling to your symbol of love.

Gemstone Wedding Rings

Gemstones are a great way to add sparkle and shine to your wedding ring while also getting a burst of color. Choose your favorite color, your birthstone, or maybe the stone of the month you got married in; whichever gemstones you choose, these are a great way to showcase your personal style.

14K Rose Gold Oval Ruby And Diamond Ring

Simple Engagement And Wedding Ring Combinations

Simply sparkling, if you sport a channel set or pavé engagement ring, a diamond wedding ring will seamlessly and flawlessly add the perfect amount of dazzle. Check out this dazzling duo and go to JamesAllen.com for more perfect pairs!

14K White Gold Petite Pavé Engagement Ring (Flush Fit)
14K White Gold Flush Fit Pavé Wedding Ring

Prefer a more traditional look? Pair a wonderfully minimalist solitaire with a clean, cool wedding ring like these two, which were simply made for each other…just like you and your love.

14K White Gold 1.5mm Comfort Fit Engagement Ring
14K White Gold 1.5mm Comfort Fit Wedding Ring

Do you want to make a statement? Are you looking for that perfect combo of dazzling diamonds and a simple wedding ring for women? Get a load of this dazzling combo!

A simple wedding ring for women

Love the look! Check them out below!

18K White Gold Chevron Diamond Station Engagement Ring
18K White Gold Chevron Diamond Station Wedding Ring

No matter which style you prefer, James Allen has the matching set for you. Let us take the guesswork out of it!

Popular Metals Used In Wedding Rings

The choices when it comes to wedding rings for women are available in platinum, yellow gold, white gold, and of course, rose gold.

Platinum is a popular choice because it is strong, pure, and rare. It is also hypoallergenic so it is a great choice for anyone with allergies or skin sensitivities. And while platinum carries a higher price point, it wears well over time, so it is a good investment.

If you love the look of platinum but prefer a lower price point, or simply prefer to be adorned in gold, then white gold is the metal for you. Love gold but want some color in your band? Go for classic yellow gold! Want color but prefer something with a bit more romance? Rose gold is the perfect choice. Not sure if platinum or white gold is for you? Find out here!

Just like engagement rings, metals for wedding rings vary in popularity and there are many factors to consider. Make sure to take the following into consideration when choosing the metal for your wedding ring:

  • Matching to your engagement ring
  • Matching to your partner’s ring
  • Personal style
  • Budget

How to Wear Your Wedding Ring

Many cultures see women wearing their wedding ring on the ring finger, on the left hand. This originated in ancient Greece with the belief that a vein there that leads to the heart is the vein of love. However, in other cultures, women wear the wedding ring on the ring finger on the right hand.

Still, others wear it on either hand, but not on any particular finger. Ultimately, there are no hard and fast rules for this. Where you wear your wedding ring is entirely up to you.

Should You Get Matching Wedding Rings?

Once again, this is entirely personal to you and your partner. You may opt for a more simple, classic wedding ring while your partner may prefer something more alternative and modern. Or perhaps you want a ring that perfectly matches your engagement ring, while your partner wants a style all their own. 

Many couples now also shop for both engagement and wedding rings together. This can allow you to match your wedding rings to your engagement ring and each other. Matching wedding rings can be a beautiful way to symbolize your commitment, but don’t forget this is a ring you will wear everyday.

So whether you match it to your partner’s ring, your engagement ring, or showcase your individual style, make sure it is a ring you love.

How To Find Your Wedding Ring Size

Don’t worry, this isn’t as hard as you may think! There are a few options to find your ring size at home, read ALL about How To Measure Your Ring Size HERE! The best way is to get a free ring sizer from James Allen.

Simply click here to order your free James Allen ring sizer directly to your home. And hey, don’t worry! Even if you still get it wrong, James Allen will resize your ring once for free within one year of your purchase.

How Much Should Your Wedding Ring Cost?

Just like how much you should spend on an engagement ring, the amount you spend on your wedding ring is very personal. If you prefer a classic, plain metal band, then your costs will be lower. However, if your style is a blinged out eternity ring, then you will need to budget a bit more for all those dazzling diamonds.

Whether you choose to start with a classic and move to sparkle for an anniversary, there is no should here. The amount you spend will be related to your budget and style.

FAQs

  • Who buys the man’s wedding ring? 
    • Traditionally, the bride buys her groom’s wedding ring, and he buys his bride’s wedding ring. However, more and more couples are splitting these costs and avoiding the whole you buy him and he buys yours. Other couples make this a family affair. Maybe your family will buy your future husband his ring. Like so many things, who pays for the ring is a personal decision.
  • Can a woman just wear a wedding ring? 
    • Of course! You can wear whatever you want! And in fact, many women are hopping on this trend. Go for a glorious anniversary or eternity ring to get a wedding ring with all the bling.
  • Which hand do you wear my wedding ring on? 
    • Traditionally, many wear their wedding ring on the ring finger on their left hand, the same as their engagement ring. However, some cultures wear the wedding ring on the right hand, separate from the engagement ring. Where you choose to wear your wedding ring is entirely up to you. Just think about it before, so you are sure to get the right size.
  • Do you still wear your engagement ring after you get married? 
    • Traditionally, many wear their engagement ring together with their wedding ring. This is why so many women match their wedding ring to their engagement ring, even picking them out at the same time to ensure continuity in style. However, this is totally your decision. If you want to save your engagement ring for only special occasions, then you do you boo!

Conclusion

Buying a wedding ring can be a daunting process. Luckily James Allen is here to take the guesswork out of it. Whatever your style and budget, we have the ring for you! Choose your metal, choose your look, check your size, and rock a ring that shines as bright as you!

Sarah Axelrad

Sarah is a stickler for grammar and prefers to use the Oxford comma. She enjoys her career as a writer since being a professional snowboarder/powerlifter/pastry chef didn’t pan out.

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How To Clean Your Jewelry At Home & Other Useful Tips

Fine jewelry, engagement rings, and wedding rings – what does it take to properly maintain your gold and platinum jewelry? We’ll give you the complete rundown on how to clean jewelry at home.

How to clean your jewelry at home

Why Should You Clean Your Jewelry Regularly?

For sparkle: Your jewelry shines its brightest at its cleanest. Over time, thin layers of dust and oil accumulate and block light from reaching your jewelry’s surfaces. Without light, there’s no reflection, refraction, brilliance, or fire. So if you notice that your jewelry is looking a bit dull, your first thought should be to clean it.

For sanitization: jewelry is full of prongs and crevices that collect grime. This doesn’t just dull your jewelry’s shine; it also means your jewelry is constantly transferring germs between you and your surroundings. Think of regular cleaning like hand-washing for your jewelry; it keeps your jewelry sanitized and keeps you healthy. Particularly in the era of COVID-19, sanitization is critical.

For safeguarding: A dirty ring is a damaged ring. Particulate build-up can scratch and/or discolor your jewelry metal. On the other hand, cleaning your jewelry too often or too vigorously can also seriously damage your jewelry. Harsh cleaners on some metals can wear away plating, causing permanent discoloration. 

How Often Should You Clean Your Jewelry?

How often should you clean your jewelry? That depends on how thoroughly you want to clean it. Regular, gentle cleaning should be performed weekly, while more thorough cleansing should only occur occasionally so that the harsh chemicals don’t damage your jewelry.

Light Cleaning: Every Week

  • Warm water + dish soap + soft toothbrush. Make your own jewelry cleaner by filling a bowl with warm (not hot) water, and then adding a few drops of dish soap. Put your jewelry in the mixture and let it sit for 15 minutes. Afterward, take your jewelry out of the bowl and scrub it clean with a soft-bristled toothbrush. Rinse, dry with a soft towel, and layout on a soft surface to dry.
  • Polishing cloth. In a pinch, a normal microfiber cloth will do. However, specialty jewelers’ cloths are the best, since they contain particular cleaning compounds formulated to both polish and remove small scratches in your jewelry. 

Occasional Cleaning: Every 1-2 Months

  • Ammonia. For a deep cleaning at home, create a strong jewelry cleaner by adding one-part ammonia to six parts water. Let your jewelry sit in this mixture for no more than 1 minute. Remove, rinse under running water, dry with a soft cloth, and place on a towel to air dry completely.

Deep Cleaning: 1-2 Times Per Year

  • Free jewelry cleaning with James Allen. Either send your jewelry to James Allen for maintenance or take your jewelry to a local James Allen partner for a complimentary professional cleaning. Minor repairs are also free!
  • Ultrasonic jewelry cleaning machine. These are similar to the machines used by professional jewelers. Ultrasound waves loosen grime from even the smallest of niches, and it only takes about 5 minutes. If you want to give your jewelry a regular deep clean, it may be worth investing in one.

Expert Tip: Ultrasound jewelry cleaning doesn’t sanitize your jewelry, so it’s worth following up an ultrasonic treatment with a simple dish soap + water cleaning. The ultrasonic waves can also damage jewelry that contains tungsten or soft, porous gemstones like pearls.

Daily Habits To Protect Your Jewelry

To prevent tarnishing and scratching, it’s worth learning a few helpful jewelry habits. These actions are most important for protecting softer metals like yellow gold and plated metals like white gold, which can be most easily scratched or discolored.

  1. Store each piece of jewelry in its own cloth bag to prevent scratching.
  2. Purchase a jewelry box that has a soft inner lining to stop pieces from scratching each other.
  3. Keep a jeweler’s polishing cloth in your bag or backpack for quick use.
  4. Take your jewelry off when you’re sleeping.
  5. Remove your jewelry during strenuous activities, like gym or construction.
  6. Don’t wear jewelry when you’re using caustic materials like household cleaners – or wear rubber gloves.
  7. Keep your jewelry off while you apply makeup or hairspray.
  8. Remove your jewelry before you swim in chlorinated pools and salt water.

How To Clean Your Engagement Ring At Home

How to clean your diamond ring

Related Post: How To Clean Your Diamond Jewelry

How To Clean Yellow Gold Jewelry

Most yellow gold jewelry is offered in two different karats of metals: 14k and 18k. While 24k is pure gold, lower carats are actually mixed with other metals (like nickel, copper, and silver) in order to strengthen it to the point that it’s suitable for jewelry.

If you’re wondering how to clean gold jewelry, you’re in luck: yellow gold is slow to tarnish and dull and doesn’t require maintenance as frequently as other gold jewelry metals.

  1. Use: Dish soap + water, ammonia, or a polishing cloth.
  2. Avoid: Bleach and tough scrubbing brushes

How To Clean White Gold Jewelry

White gold’s silvery luster is created by alloying yellow gold with white metals like nickel or zinc and finishing with rhodium plating. Normal wear and tear will result in the need for rhodium re-plating every 5-10 years in order to maintain white gold’s silvery appearance.

This rhodium plating can also be worn down by strong chemicals, so take off your white gold rings when cleaning.

  1. Use: dish soap + water or a polishing cloth
  2. Avoid: harsh chemicals which can strip the rhodium plating.

How To Clean Rose Gold Jewelry

Rose gold is a yellow gold/copper alloy. The gold gives it a malleability and sheen that’s perfect for jewelry, and the copper gives it its distinctive pink hue. It’s also the strongest of all the gold metals, so your rose gold jewelry can be worn more often, with less chance of scratching.

  1. Use: dish soap + water or a polishing cloth
  2. Avoid: abrasive chemicals

How To Clean Platinum Jewelry

Platinum is a rare, valuable metal with a gorgeous silvery sheen that retains its white luster with minimal maintenance. It’s also the most durable of all the ring metals! In general, you’ll have to clean platinum jewelry less regularly than gold, and it will also scratch less.

  1. Use: dish soap + water or a polishing cloth.
  2. Avoid: Ammonia

A Tidy Summary

No matter what metal your jewelry is made from, it’s important to maintain its sparkle via weekly cleanings with dish soap, warm water, and a soft-bristled toothbrush.

For a squeaky-clean professional shine, either send your James Allen jewelry to us for a quick and complimentary deep cleaning or take it to one of our brick-and-mortar partner jewelers. Or spend a bit of money to DIY and deep clean it with either an ammonia-water mixture or purchase an ultrasonic jewelry cleaner. 

Treating your jewelry right will help it look continuously brilliant throughout the years.

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

Jessica Thomas

Jessica feels too much anxiety trying to come up with a cool bio. Read her awesome blog post instead.

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How To Measure Your Ring Size

How To Measure Your Ring Size

Whether you’re searching for the perfect fit for your dream engagement ring or surprising your fiance’ to be, our ring size guide will point you in the right direction. Let’s see how you measure up.

How To Measure Your Ring Size

Wedding and engagement rings have long been a symbol of love and devotion. The circular ring has neither a start nor a finish, which is emblematic of an everlasting union. With such rich meaning and symbolism, designed to last a lifetime—so it makes sense that the ring size needs to be spot on.

If you’re not sure how to measure ring size, you’re in the right place.

How To Measure Ring Size At Home?

You may be asking yourself, how is this even possible? It’s true, James Allen can help you figure out your ring size all from the comfort of your own home. Take a look at our free online ring sizer

Alternatively, you can simply request a free ring sizer that will be delivered to your home. 

Nervous that you’ve ordered the incorrect ring size? Don’t fret! We will resize your ring once, for free up to 1 year after the purchase.

Different Ring Size Conversions

While you may wear one size in the U.K., your sizing in the states may be completely different. Thankfully, though, conversion charts are available to ensure you order the right size regardless of which country the ring was sized in, which ensures complete accuracy.

Ring sizes in the United States and Canada range from 3 to 13, which includes half and quarter sizes. A ring’s size is determined by its diameter or circumference and is measured in inches or millimeters. The diameter measures the inside length of the ring, whereas the circumference measures the length of the entire band. 

International ring sizing involves the same measurement process, but the numbered sizes run on different scales, which vary by country. Australia and the United Kingdom actually use an alphabetical letter sizing system.

Different Ring Size Conversions

How To Measure Ring Size With A Tape Measure

Using a measuring tape is considered to be the best and most accurate method to determine your ring size. Give yourself enough space to accommodate your knuckles for the best results. Also, you should measure the finger where you plan to wear the ring, since the finger size on your left and right hands may differ.

STEP 1: 

Place the measuring tape over your finger and pull it around into a circle. 

STEP 2: 

You should adjust the size of the circle, move it over your knuckles, and make sure it fits comfortably.

STEP 3: 

Take note of the measurements in millimeters and use the comparison chart if needed. 

How To Measure Ring Size With A String

This next method is simple and works well for those who don’t have a ring nearby. All you need to do is take some string or ribbon and wrap it comfortably around your ring finger.

Once the piece of string is around your finger, carefully mark the spot where the string overlaps. For an accurate result, try to make the smallest mark possible. Then, take the string and measure it against a ruler or measuring tape. Enter your measurements here in either millimeters or inches. We’ll do the calculations for you and, voila, you now have your ring size. 

Still unsure? Find out more by watching this video.

More Ring Sizing Tips

  1. Measure your finger in the evening – For best results, measure your finger at the end of the day. In the morning, your fingers are colder and therefore smaller than usual.
  2. Measure a few times – Be sure to measure your finger size a few times to make sure your calculations are accurate.
  3. Use non-stretchable material – If you’re measuring your finger on your own, you want an accurate measurement! Good materials: ribbon, twine, even paper.
  4. Measure your finger close to your knuckle – This is where the ring will usually sit, so you want it to be comfortable.
  5. Measure your finger in the middle of the day – Our fingers tend to swell overnight, so it is recommended not to take your measurement in the morning as you wake up. 
  6. It’s also recommended to not measure your finger, When the weather is either too hot or cold, after an intense workout or if you are sick.

Tips for Buying a Ring as a Surprise:

  1. Ask people If you don’t know your partner’s ring size, ask their close friends or family members to assist. Tell them to keep it hush-hush so that they don’t accidentally ruin the surprise!
  2. Borrow a ring that fits Borrow their ring (from the correct finger!) and use James Allen’s virtual ring sizer to determine the ring’s size.
  3. Shop for the ring on a private device And log out of all your shared accounts! You don’t want your partner running across your cookie trail.

Other Ways To Find The Ring Size

Taking an existing ring to a jeweler

Even though you won’t be shopping for a ring in the store, this is still one of the most professional ways to find your ideal ring size. Head over to your local jewelry store and have the jeweler measure your ring size. In addition to their nifty gadget, consider trying on a few of their engagement or wedding rings to ensure comfort and a perfect fit. 

Find your ring size

What Is The Average Ring Size For Men?

The average size of a men’s wedding band is 9. For men with bigger hands and long fingers, a wider ring band is recommended. While men with smaller hands or shorter fingers, a wider band may not be the best choice. Then again, this also depends on your personal style and how much of a statement you want to make.

What Is The Average Ring Size For Women?

According to the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), the average ring size for a woman is a size 6. However, they also add that depending on their lifestyle, on average most women tend to fluctuate in weight, so adding a quarter size to the ring is often recommended. Fingers also tend to swell during seasons such as summer, so keep that in mind as well when measuring your ring size.

The average ring size for women

James Allen Ring Sizer Tools

You don’t have to worry about sizing a ring. James Allen’s Virtual Ring Sizer can help you determine your ring size online for free. There are two options available, you can either measure your finger, or you can measure a ring you already own to discover your ring size. Both are accurate and will give you your exact ring size.

What Happens When My Ring Is Resized?

During the resize process, small amounts of metal will be added or removed to increase or decrease the size as needed. As a result, your ring may be slightly thicker or thinner when completed. This is a minor difference and is often invisible to the naked eye.

Your resized ring will be inspected by quality assurance to ensure that our high standards are met and that your ring has been fitted to the size that you need.

What If I Order The Wrong Ring Size?

It’s worth noting that approximately 40% of rings end up being resized. But don’t worry, as we know that this is something that can happen when you’re buying a ring online, we offer free ring sizing for up to 1 year after purchase

Rings That Can’t Be Resized

Unfortunately, some rings are not able to be resized. This may be because of the specific design or material that has been used. Rings made from unconventional materials such as resin, ceramic, jade, or wood cannot be resized because there’s no way to cut and bend the ring- its composition isn’t amenable to the process,

These include:

FAQs

  1. How will I know if I have the right size?

A good ring size should fit snug around the base of your finger without bulging or leaving any indentations. However, the ring should also be loose enough to slide over your knuckle. Check if your ring fits right by pushing it up from underneath and making sure there is a small space between it and your finger. This means there is enough room.

  1. Does band thickness affect size? 

Yes, band thickness can affect your ring size. The more a ring covers your finger, the tighter it will fit. In addition, stacking many types of bands, such as a wedding ring set, will increase your ring size. We recommend measuring your ring size with a sizer that’s close to the thickness of the ring that you’ll be wearing.

  1. How to secretly find someone’s ring size? 

Planning a surprise romantic and creative proposal? You can easily find out your partner’s ring size without them knowing. One of the easiest options is to simply ask their family or friends. Another way to measure your partner’s ring size secretly is by measuring a ring they already wear.

  1. Are men’s and women’s rings measured using the same scale? 

Yes, women’s and men’s ring sizes are measured on the same scale. The average size of men’s hands tends to be larger than that of women’s, so they will fall into the larger category.

We’re Here To Help

Concerned about how to measure your ring size? At JamesAllen.com, our non-commissioned diamond and jewelry experts are always available to help and answer any queries you may have. We look forward to assisting you! Contact us here.

Tarryn Snoyman

Tarryn is a content writer by day and a criminology enthusiast by night.

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Fancy Yellow Diamonds: A Complete Guide 

Ever wondered what a fancy yellow diamond or canary diamond is? We’ve got all the answers to your yellow diamond questions, from their origins to their color grading and so much more!

Yellow Diamonds

What Is A Fancy Yellow Diamond?

Yellow diamonds, or canary diamonds, are part of the fancy color diamond group. Fancy yellow diamonds get their stunning golden glow from a small part of nitrogen that’s contained in their structure. The more nitrogen, the deeper the yellow shade. 

Regular colorless diamonds may contain a yellow tint in them depending on their grading. However, when the color reaches a certain level and becomes the dominant color it falls into the fancy color diamond category and its value rises. 

Fancy yellow diamonds come in all shades, from pale yellow to intense yellow. These diamonds may also contain shades of other colors, such as orange and brown. Diamonds with the pure intense or vivid yellow hue are known specifically as Canary Diamonds or Yellow Canary Diamonds. 

What Is The Origin Of Fancy Yellow Diamonds?

Yellow diamonds get their summery color from the presence of nitrogen in their composition. The nitrogen molecules absorb blue light, making the stone appear yellow. Depending on the amount of nitrogen, a yellow diamond could range from light to vivid yellow. 

A little nitrogen may put a colorless diamond in the H or L color grading, which, for a colorless diamond, isn’t attractive to diamond buyers. Whereas diamonds with more nitrogen become increasingly yellow, which turns them into an asset and a rare sought-after gem. 

A collection of fancy yellow diamond jewelry

What Are Canary Diamonds? 

Canary Yellow Diamonds are the most desirable and valuable type of yellow diamond. Like the canary bird, these diamonds exhibit a deep, intense yellow hue, as opposed to a dull or light yellow tinge that can be considered a negative in colorless diamonds.

Officially, canary diamonds are simply fancy yellow diamonds, graded anywhere from fancy intense to fancy vivid on the GIA color scale. Canary Yellow is a casual term used for yellow diamonds with pure yellow color. 

Canary Yellow Diamonds are rare and beautiful which ultimately means they come with a higher price tag and resell value than most other yellow diamonds.

Yellow Diamond Color Grading

White diamonds are graded on a color scale of D to Z, with D being a colorless diamond and Z having a distinct yellow or brown tint. If the scale were to continue past Z—all the way to a rich, yellow color—you’d have a Fancy Vivid Yellow Diamond. In other words, yellow diamonds are fully saturated with yellow and carry no traces of whiteness whatsoever.

The GIA color grading scale for yellow diamonds is:

  1. Faint
  2. Very Light
  3. Light
  4. Fancy Light
  5. Fancy
  6. Fancy Intense
  7. Fancy Vivid, Fancy Deep, or Fancy Dark
An infographic detailing the yellow diamond color grading scale

Are Fancy Yellow Diamonds Expensive?

Fancy Yellow Diamonds can cost anywhere from around $2,500 per carat to $20,000 or more per carat, depending on a number of factors. For a decent quality 1 carat yellow diamond, you can expect the price to be at least $3,000-$3,500.

Factors that influence the price of yellow diamonds include:

  • Yellow Color Grade: “Faint” or “Very Light” yellow diamonds are much cheaper, while Fancy Intense and Fancy Vivid diamonds are much more expensive.
  • Supporting Colors: the highest-priced yellow diamonds are those with a pure yellow color (like Canary Diamonds) or diamonds with an orange or green overtone. On the other end, brownish-yellow diamonds are often (though not always) cheaper.
  • Cut and Clarity: like colorless diamonds, the 4Cs play heavily into the price of yellow diamonds. 
  • Carat: yellow diamonds at high carat weights are much rarer than smaller diamonds, and thus command a higher relative price.

Are Yellow Diamonds Real Diamonds?

The short answer is yes! Yellow diamonds are 100% real and absolutely breathtaking. Not only are these diamonds real but they are extremely valuable and created in the same natural process as colorless diamonds. 

On a side note, lab grown fancy yellow diamonds are also just as real as natural mined diamonds. Lab created diamonds are synthetically, chemically, and optically identical to earth created diamonds. Despite their differences, some may argue that the process behind lab grown diamonds is more environmentally friendly, and creates stunning diamonds that are significantly cheaper. 

What Cut Is The Best For Yellow Diamonds?

While colorless diamonds tend to radiate brilliance as round cuts, a round cut might have the opposite effect on yellow diamonds. It turns out that a round cut might dilute the color of yellow diamonds, while radiant, and cushion cuts help to deepen the color of a yellow diamond. 

Radiant and cushion cut diamonds are very similar in regard to how the faceting system and shape of these stones balance the vibrant color to achieve the highest sparkle possible. The faceting of these diamonds maximizes the saturation of the color while still maintaining the highest levels of fiery brilliance. 

An image of a fancy yellow cushion cut diamond
An image of a fancy yellow radiant cut diamond.

What Metal Color Is The Best For Yellow Diamonds? 

With a yellow diamond, you can really play around with metal colors depending on the shade of your yellow diamond. Yellow diamonds have unique opportunities to either contrast or compliment when it comes to different metal colors.

Engagement ring settings usually come in a variety of metals, including platinum, white gold, yellow gold, and rose gold.

We recommend platinum or white gold for fancy deep and vivid canary yellow diamonds. The contrast these light metals will create with the intense yellow colors ensures that your engagement ring stands out. 

Likewise, combining a yellow center diamond with colorless side stones, or in a halo setting, can accentuate the main diamond and make it pop. 

Alternatively, a darker setting like yellow or rose gold can make a yellow diamond appear deeper and more intense than its color grade. This can allow you to save by purchasing a faint or light-colored diamond, which will have a darker appearance when reflecting the color of its setting.

14K White Gold Bead Accent Pavé Trio Diamond Engagement Ring
14K Yellow Gold Round Split Band Diamond Halo Engagement Ring

What Ring Setting Is The Best For Yellow Diamonds? 

Our top three picks for yellow diamond engagement ring settings are halo and side stone settings. 

Halo settings also look stunning with radiant and cushion cut diamonds and help to maximize the diamond sparkle and will make it appear larger. 

Side stones are perfect to highlight your yellow diamond and add to the uniqueness of your ring. Side stone settings come in various chic and bold designs with many different diamond accents- also available in various diamond cuts.

14K White Gold Drifting Marquise Diamond Engagement Ring
14K Yellow Gold Marquise Row Diamond Halo Engagement Ring

Do You Get Lab Created Yellow Diamonds? 

Fancy yellow lab created diamonds do exist and are found in every yellow shade and diamond size and cut. Lab grown diamonds are particularly popular in online jewelry retail stores, and are significantly cheaper than natural diamonds, as they are easier to come by.

The downside is lab diamonds are not as rare as natural diamonds and thus carry very little resale value. However, if you simply want a beautiful diamond for the lowest price, you can consider going with a man-made diamond.

FAQs About Fancy Yellow Diamonds? 

  1. Can yellow diamonds fade?

A real yellow-colored diamond’s color will never fade and it won’t require any special treatment to maintain its natural color. Of course, it’s important to clean your diamond on a regular basis to remove dirt, creams, and other unwanted materials. 

  1. Aren’t yellow-colored diamonds a bad thing? 

Regular colorless diamonds that have a certain degree of yellow or brown tints in them are regarded negatively and are cheaper than completely colorless diamonds. However, once the color reaches a level where it is the dominant color, the diamond is then categorized as a Fancy Colored Diamond and its value begins to rise given its new title. 

  1. What is the price of a 1 carat fancy yellow diamond? 

Depending on the color grade and cut of the 1 carat fancy yellow diamond, you can expect to pay between $2,500-$20,000. That number could greatly decrease if you chose to opt for a 1 carat lab created fancy yellow diamond. 

  1. Where is the best place to buy a fancy yellow diamond? 

The best place to buy a fancy yellow diamond depends on what you’re looking for. You may get a better variety of diamond cuts and color grade options online than in-store. However, if you’re looking for a lab grown yellow diamond, online diamond retailers tend to have a larger inventory to choose from. 

  1. Are yellow diamonds rare? 

Yellow diamonds make up 60% of fancy color diamonds. While they aren’t the rarest fancy color diamond, they are rare and they can be quite expensive.

Final Thoughts

At James Allen, we have over 500,000 diamonds, all certified conflict-free. We are proud to go above and beyond many of the current industry requirements and standards to ensure we are offering you the best quality diamonds from the most responsible sources.

Visit our Education Center to read everything you need to know about selecting the best center diamond for you. View your favorite diamond choices in 360° HD with a free consultation. You can even try out our engagement ring customization tool to create the ring of your dreams with your ideal yellow diamond!

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

Jessica Thomas

Jessica feels too much anxiety trying to come up with a cool bio. Read her awesome blog post instead.

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What Are Gemstones? A Complete Guide 

What is a gemstone? Join us as we explore fun facts about gemstones from their origins, symbolism, rarity, and which ones are used as our favorite birthstones. 

Gemstones

Gemstones have mesmerized people for centuries. Throughout history, gems had become a sign of wealth and grew even more popular when an entire belief system arose around the energy and symbolic properties of these stunning stones. Of course, we know gemstones are most popular as jewelry, but many civilizations believed they were endowed with mysterious powers.

So, where do these miraculous gems come from? What types of gemstones do we get, and what are birthstones? Join us as we explore the history, origin, colors, and other interesting fun facts about gemstones. 

What Are Gemstones?

Gemstones are minerals, rocks, and other organic materials that are cut and polished to create pieces of jewelry and other attractive accessories for clothing or decorative ornaments. Gems are either considered precious or semi-precious. 

Fun fact #1: Of the more than 2,000 identified natural minerals, fewer than 100 are used as gemstones. 

Gemstone necklaces

Types of Gemstones 

There are many different types of gemstones. We’ll look at each category based on how they’re formed. Some are created from minerals, organic materials, inorganic materials, or rocks. 

Mineral Gems

Diamonds, sapphires, rubies, emeralds, and almost all birthstone gems (not opal) are formed from minerals.

Organic Gems

Next, we have organic gems. These gems contain both fossil-based gems like amber and organic-formed gems like pearls. 

Fun fact #2: Amber is the result of resin from fossilized prehistoric trees! It’s considered to be the softest and lightest gemstone on earth.

Inorganic Gems

There are only two other types of inorganic gems, opal, and obsidian. Obsidian is black volcanic glass formed as a result of volcanic eruptions. Opal is a strange material that can act as a solid crystal but sometimes behaves like a liquid. 

Rock Gems

Finally, the rock gems category consists of lapis lazuli, a blue, white, or gold stone, and unakite which is a form of granite. Unakite is a greenish-white stone with pink patches. 

Synthetic Gemstones

There is a particular class of gemstones known as synthetic gemstones. These stones are not naturally occurring, like minerals, or formed from organisms, like pearls, but instead are created through human intervention. Synthetic gems are designed to look like naturally occurring gems but without the hefty price tag caused by the rarity of natural stones. 

PS: Lab created diamonds aren’t synthetic gems, they’re 100% real diamonds. 

The Formation of Diamonds vs. Gemstones

Unlike gemstones, diamonds are the only gem formed by a single element. That element is highly pressurized carbon. Gemstones are usually made up of two or more compounds. 

Gemstone Origins

Ever wondered where gemstones come from? Well, the short answer is 3 to 25 miles beneath the Earth’s surface. That is where most gemstones are formed and are then either mined or brought to the earth’s surface during a natural process. 

Fun fact #3: There are only two gems, diamonds, and peridot, that are formed and found much deeper in the earth. 

What Is The Birthstone For Each Month?

So, what is a birthstone? A birthstone is a gemstone that represents your birth month or zodiac sign. One of the things we love most about birthstones is they make it easy to shop for friends and family birthdays. Don’t know what to gift your loved one? Birthstone jewelry is there to save the day. 

Fun fact #4: Did you know that some months have more than one birthstone? At least five months have multiple birthstones. Let’s find out which ones fall into that category: 

Birthstone jewelry
  1. January’s birthstone is garnet. Garnet is commonly a stunning red gem but can come in all colors of the rainbow and sometimes change color in different lighting. 
  1. Amethyst is the February birthstone. Amethyst comes in shades of lilac to deep purple and was once reserved for royalty and believed to cure addiction. 
  1. March’s birthstone actually includes two gems, aquamarine, and bloodstone. Aquamarine stuns with its oceanic hues, and bloodstone is said to help protect its wearer. 
  1. April’s birthstone is diamond. This gem needs no introduction as it is arguably one of the world’s most popular and sought-after gems. 
  1. May’s birthstone is emerald. Emerald has been loved for millennia and is known for its captivating green colors, and is said to symbolize rebirth and renewal. 
  1. June has three birthstones, pearl, moonstone, and alexandrite. Pearl is the most popular of the three, while alexandrite is considered one of the rarest gemstones in the world. 
  1. Ruby is the July birthstone most recognized as the stone of love, passion, and wealth, given its rich red colors. 
  1. August also has three unique birthstones, peridot, spinel, and sardonyx. Peridot is the most famous of the three as it only exists in one color- a cosmic green. 
  1. September’s birthstone is sapphire. Sapphires come in many colors but are most famous for their blue variety. Pink sapphires are considered very rare. 
  1. Opal and tourmaline are the birthstones for October. Both gemstones come in a rich array of colors, but opal is more popular as a precious jewel. 
  1. November has two birthstones, citrine and yellow topaz. Both stones are golden in color and symbolize love and affection. 
  1. Turquoise, tanzanite, blue topaz, and zircon make up the birthstones for December. Turquoise is by far the oldest known of the three, while Tanzanite is the most recently discovered. 

What Is A Gemstone For Love & Romance?

There are a few stunning options if you’re looking for gemstone jewelry or a gemstone engagement ring that symbolizes love and romance. Rose quartz, pink sapphire, ruby, pink tourmaline, and amethyst. These stones are believed to encourage romantic and self-love, open one’s heart and promote acceptance and faithfulness. 

Fun fact #5: Pop royalty, Lady Gaga, and real-life royalty Princess Eugenie both received pink engagement rings. 

What Are Gemstones For Good Luck?

Need some extra luck in your life? Peridot, sapphire, and citrine are three of the luckiest gemstones you’ll find. Sapphires are said to attract riches and recover lost wealth. Peridot is also known as the money stone and increases willpower, well-being, and vitality. Finally, the golden stone, citrine, is known to keep bad things away and is a stone of prosperity and protection. 

What Are Gemstones For Healing?

Amber, the stunning organic gem, has a strong connection to nature. It can be electrically charged when rubbed against silk or wool and is said to treat headaches. Another healing stone is the oceanic aquamarine. Some people believe this gemstone brings happiness and luck to its wearers and helps them cope when grieving. 

The last one on our list of healing gemstones is garnet. Garnet is a deep red gem that energizes wearers as they deal with their health issues. This stone is believed to revitalize the body and mind by increasing wearers’ confidence. 

What Are The Gemstones By Color?

Many famous gemstones are known for a specific color, but it should be noted that most of these gemstones come in various colors and hues. For example, two of the most popular gems, diamond, and sapphire, can be found in a rainbow of colors.

White diamonds have their own color grading system, and you might be surprised to know that fancy colored diamonds also exist. At the same time, sapphires exist in every color except for red. 

Here’s a list of the most well-known gemstones by color:

  • Black gemstones: Black sapphire, onyx, black opal, black pearl, obsidian, black pearl, black tourmaline, and fancy black diamond.
  • White gemstones: Diamond, opal, pearl, white sapphire, moonstone, white jade, and zircon.
  • Gray gemstones: Tahitian pearl, grey sapphire, grey tourmaline, and fancy grey diamond.
  • Pink gemstones: Morganite, pink sapphire, rose quartz, pink garnet, pink pearl, pink tourmaline, pink topaz, and fancy pink diamond.
  • Red gemstones: Ruby, garnet, red tourmaline, carnelian, and fancy red diamond.
  • Brown gemstones: Amber, tiger’s eye, brown tourmaline, citrine, smoky quartz, brown jade, and fancy brown diamond.
  • Orange gemstones: Amber, orange sapphire, sunstone, agate, and fancy orange diamond.
  • Peach gemstones: Morganite, peach sapphire, fancy peach diamond.
  • Yellow gemstones: Citrine, yellow sapphire, amber, yellow topaz, yellow garnet, yellow tourmaline, and fancy yellow diamond.
  • Green gemstones: Emerald, peridot, jade, green tsavorite garnets, green agate, green bloodstone, and fancy green diamond.
  • Blue gemstones: Blue sapphire, aquamarine, lapis lazuli, blue topaz, blue tourmaline, and fancy blue diamond.
  • Purple gemstones: Amethysts, purple sapphire, purple tourmaline, purple garnet, spinel, tanzanite, and fancy purple diamond. 

Fun fact #6: In ancient times, women used to wear opal beads in their hair to maintain the blonde color and keep it from fading. 

Famous Gemstones And Their Meanings

Amethyst Gemstone Meaning

Because of its color, the ancient Greeks associated amethyst with the wine god Dionysus and believed that the gem could prevent drunkenness. In fact, the word amethystos meant “not drunk” in ancient Greek. Amethyst has also been thought to keep the wearer clear-headed and quick-witted. 

Amethyst Gemstone

Browse our collection of Amethyst birthstone jewelry here

Aquamarine Gemstone Meaning

Aquamarine is believed to give its wearer courage, mental clarity, and good health. This gem has a long association with water and so aquamarine has been said to keep sailors safe at sea. It’s also been known to purify water and work as an antidote to poison. The stone is also closely tied to mythologies of sirens and mermaids, and some legends say that aquamarines first washed up to shore out of sirens’ treasure chests.

Aquamarine Gemstone

Browse our collection of aquamarine birthstone jewelry here

Citrine Gemstone Meaning

Citrine is the gem that brings happiness, health, good energy, and luck! It is widely known as “healing quartz” because legend has it that citrine promotes vitality and energy in whomever wears it. The name citrine comes from the Latin root for lemon, and it’s no surprise as the gem shines with different golden hues.

Citrine Gemstone

Browse our collection of citrine birthstone jewelry here

Diamond Gemstone Meaning

Are diamonds tears cried by the gods or remnants from falling stars? Perhaps not, but that is what the ancient Romans and Greeks believed diamonds were. During the Middle Ages, diamonds were thought to be healing stones that could cure ailments ranging from fatigue to mental illness. Nowadays, diamonds are a symbol of strength for relationships and their individual wearers.

Diamond Gemstone

Browse our collection of diamond jewelry or diamond engagement rings

Emerald Gemstone Meaning

In ancient Greece and Rome, emeralds represented Venus, the goddess of love and hope. Emeralds are not only a stone associated with nature, but with intuition and foresight. Legend has it that if you place an emerald under your tongue, it’ll give you the ability to see the future. Emeralds are said to protect their wearers against evil and can cure disease.

Emerald Gemstone

Browse our collection of emerald jewelry and emerald engagement rings

Garnet Gemstone Meaning

Garnets have a mythological association with the goddess Persephone. The ancient Greeks believed these gems came from the pomegranates she ate in the underworld. In ancient Egypt, the pharaohs wore red garnet necklaces and in ancient Rome, rings with carved garnets were used to stamp the wax on important documents. Garnets are also one of the oldest stones to be used for spiritual protection throughout history.

Browse our collection of garnet birthstone jewelry here

Morganite Gemstone Meaning

Morganite was first discovered in the early 1900s by gemologist George Kunz, who proposed that the stone should be named after American financier and gem enthusiast J.P. Morgan. This pink variety of beryl is believed to bring positive healing energy, inner peace joy, confidence, and unconditional love. It is also supposed to soothe anxiety and stress. 

Morganite Gemstone

Browse our collection of morganite jewelry here.

Opal Gemstone Meaning

Because opals can exhibit so many colors within a single stone, they have long been thought to possess supernatural powers. In ancient Rome, this gem symbolized love and hope. The ancient Greeks believed opals gave their owners the gift of prophecy and guarded them against disease. For centuries, Europeans have considered the gem a symbol of hope, purity, and truth. 

Opal Gemstone

Browse our collection of opal birthstone jewelry here.

Pearl Gemstone Meaning

The oldest precious gem, pearls, are known for their beautiful shimmering color and delicate beauty. In ancient China, pearls were believed to protect against fire, and in Europe, they were associated with innocence and purity. Pearls maintain their association with innocence today and are popular as bridal jewelry.

Pearl Gemstone

Browse our collection of pearl birthstone jewelry here.

Peridot Gemstone Meaning

Peridots have long been associated with Ancient Egypt. The Egyptians thought peridot protected against nightmares and brought the wearer confidence, good luck, and health. It’s believed that some of Cleopatra’s famous emeralds were actually peridots.

Peridot Gemstone

Browse our collection of peridot birthstone jewelry here.

Ruby Gemstone Meaning

Ancient Hindus believed those who offered rubies to the god Krishna would be emperors in their future life. People in India and Burma have also believed that rubies provided safety and peace, and medieval Europeans thought these gems guaranteed health, wealth, wisdom, and success in love.

Ruby Gemstone

Browse our collection of ruby jewelry and ruby engagement rings.

Sapphire Gemstone Meaning

Sapphires are a very lucky stone, believed to attract an abundance of blessings upon their wearers. This gem is said to promote health and spiritual clarity and guard one’s innocence. Sapphires are closely associated with royalty and have been a popular choice as engagement ring center stones. Princess Diana’s blue sapphire engagement ring is still the most recognizable engagement ring to this day.

Sapphire Gemstone

Browse our collection of sapphire jewelry and sapphire engagement rings.

Topaz Gemstone Meaning

Topaz symbolizes love and fidelity and is said to give strength and increase cognitive abilities for those who wear it. While topaz comes in various colors, most popularly blue topaz, it’s orange topaz that has been associated with fire in many cultures and eras. Like citrine and yellow sapphire, topaz is thought to bring good fortune and confidence.

Topaz Gemstone

Browse our collection of topaz birthstone jewelry here

We hope you found this helpful! If you’re looking to know more about gemstones, or you’re curious to learn more about a particular birthstone, check out our related blogs below! 

January Garnets * February Amethysts * March Aquamarines * April Diamonds * May Emeralds * June Pearls * July Rubies * August Peridots * September Sapphires * October Opal * November Citrines * December Blue Topaz

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

Jessica Thomas

Jessica feels too much anxiety trying to come up with a cool bio. Read her awesome blog post instead.

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How To Choose The Right Jewelry For Your Skin Tone 

There’s a good reason certain metal types suit you better than others. Read on and find out how to pick the right jewelry color for your skin tone!

Jewelry

What is Skin Tone & Why Does It Matter With Jewelry?

Your skin tone is not the same as your skin color, also known as overtone. Rather, it refers to the subtle undertones of your skin that come through no matter how the environment impacts your skin. 

To get technical, the primary component in someone’s skin tone is their melanin content. We know that melanin also contributes to skin color, with more melanin resulting in darker skin color. However, in the case of skin tone, the more melanin you have the warmer your skin tone. 

So why does skin tone matter when picking your engagement ring metal or other fine jewelry? It matters because different metals either clash or complement different undertones. Since the metal encasing your gemstones or diamond often rests directly in contact with your skin, it can have a major impact on how well your jewelry looks on you.

Most people fall into one of two undertone categories – warm or cool. A few of you may even be part of the neutral skin tone group.

Skin Tone vs Undertone 

Skin Tone

  • Surface color of your natural skin
  • It can change 
  • Categorized as light, medium, dark

Undertone

  • Muted color beneath your skin 
  • Cannot change 
  • Categorized as warm, cold, neutral 

Skin Tone Categories

Light 

Light or fair skin tones tend to come from Northern European countries. People with paler skin are usually more sensitive to the sun and find they burn easily.

14K White Gold Two Hearts In One Layered Diamond Necklace
14K Yellow Gold Plate Cuff Bangle

Medium

Medium complexions are typical of those of Southern Europe and Northern Asian descent. Usually, this skin tone is neutral and can tan well in the sun. Many people under the medium category have an envy-worthy olive skin tone.

14K White Gold Inside Out Round Hoops, 3/4 Inch Diameter (0.25 Ctw.)
14K White Gold Channel Set Princess Cut Diamond Engagement Ring

Dark

Dark complexions typically originate from parts of the world that have the most exposure to ultraviolet radiation, such as the Middle East, India, and Africa.  

14K Yellow Gold 3.9mm Paper Clip Chain Necklace
14K Yellow Gold Woven Solitaire Engagement Ring

Undertone Categories

Your undertone is like the shadow of your skin that will always be there and never change. Cool, warm, and neutral are used to describe the different shades we find. 

When applying make-up, the undertone of your skin determines what shade of foundation to use on your face, and it also helps us to understand which metal color is perfect to suit your unique skin tone.

  • Cool tone: red, pink, and bluish hues underneath the skin. 
  • Warm tone: yellow and golden hues underneath the skin. 
  • Neutral tone: olive or a balanced mix of the above-mentioned shades. 

How to Determine Your Skin Tone

Here are three ways to tell which skin tone category you fall under. 

  1. Your Veins 

Look at your veins under natural light and check their appearance under your skin. Under natural light, you’ll be looking at your undertones rather than your overtones. Are your veins blue or green? Are you even able to tell? 

Well, if you can’t tell, you may be someone who falls under the neutral skin tone category. If your veins are blue or purplish, then you’re part of the cool tone group. Finally, if your veins are green, you’ll fall under the warm tone category. 

  1. The Silver/Gold Test

If you have some jewelry lying around, try on some silver and yellow gold pieces and see which metal complements your skin better. If the silver looks better, it’s likely you have cool undertones. If you have warm skin tones, yellow gold will stand out as the better option. 

Hint hint: At JamesAllen.com you can use our virtual try-on to see how well your favorite engagement ring looks on your hand AND you can try it on using different metal colors! 

  1. Your Skin’s Reaction to Sun Exposure

When you’re out in the sun, how does your skin react? Do you tan easily or rarely experience sunburn? Or do you find your skin is easily burned and turns red quickly? Those who tan easily likely have a warm skin tone. If you burn easily you’re probably part of the cool tone club. 

Buying The Right Jewelry For Your Skin Tone 

Now that you know how to determine your skin tone and which undertone category you fall under, we can start to figure out which metal type is perfect for you. 

Cool Tone

If you fall in the cool category, white metals complement your skin the best. These include platinum, white gold, and silver. If you’re worried about whether your white gold jewelry will still stand out against paler skin, fear not. White metals shine just as bright as yellow or rose gold.

14K White Gold Channel Set Diamond Wedding Ring (.63 CTW.)
18K White Gold Halo Princess Cut Diamond Necklace

Warm Tone

If your skin tone falls in the warm category, then opt for yellow gold or copper. Earth tones, such as rose gold, bronze, or black metals also look great on warm skin tones. Darker metals can really elevate your look, especially with statement pieces like diamond necklaces or tennis bracelets.

14K Yellow Gold Asscher Cut Diamond Eternity Ring (2 CTW H-I / SI1-SI2)

Neutral Tone 

Finally, if neutral is your tone, then you can choose the metal you like best. Go with what makes you feel beautiful because every metal looks great on your skin!

P.S. Love rose gold? Rose gold is a neutral metal, so it looks great on everyone! 

14K Rose Gold Pavé Chain Diamond Ring
14K Rose Gold Claw Prong Solitaire Engagement Ring (Flush Fit)

Final Thoughts

Just keep in mind, these guidelines are just that – a place to get you started in experimenting with which metals look best against your beautiful skin. At James Allen, we have all the tools and support you need to find and design the engagement ring of your dreams and the wedding rings you and your partner will cherish forever. 

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

Jessica Thomas

Jessica feels too much anxiety trying to come up with a cool bio. Read her awesome blog post instead.

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Wedding Ring Engraving Ideas

Make your day unforgettable with a free wedding ring engraving.

Ring engraving ideas

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!

Why engrave your wedding ring?

  1. It’s free
  2. It’s personal
  3. You can match it to your partner’s 
  4. Suits the ceremony

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS: A ROMANTIC PHRASE

Angled Common Prong Diamond

14K White Gold Ladies 1.00CTW.* Angled Common Prong Diamond Eternity Ring

“LOVE IS A VERB”

Matching Filigree

Platinum Matching Wedding Band

“I KNEW I’D MARRY YOU”

Three Stone Sunburst

Platinum Three Stone Sunburst Wedding Ring

“I CHOOSE YOU

Satin Finish Channel Diamond

Platinum 8mm Satin Finish Channel Set Diamond Band

“TBH, I LOVE YOU”

More Ideas:

  • For a lifetime
  • Dreams Do Come True
  • Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me
  • With You Always
  • Joined for Life
  • Yours Forever
  • You & Only You
  • Truly, Madly, Deeply
  • “ALWAYS & FOREVER”
  • “TO MY WIFE”

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS: YOUR SPECIAL DATE

This is your biggest day! Incorporate your wedding date into your ring engraving as a way to emphasize the importance of your special day.

Matching Pavé

14K Yellow Gold Matching Pavé Wedding Band

“I FOUND LOVE 3-14-19”

Sapphire & Diamond

Platinum Blue Sapphire And Diamond Arrow Shape Wedding Ring

“1.30.19 S&H”

Hammered Comfort Fit

14K Yellow Gold 6mm Hammered Comfort Fit Wedding Band

“I Take Thee” 9-5-22

Slightly Curved Round Diamond

14K Rose Gold Slightly Curved Round Diamond Wedding Ring

“Of Course” 2.26.2021

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS: GET GOOFY

Why hide it? You’re adorable.

Cushion Outline

“MY CATLADY2”

Round And Marquise Diamond 

14K White Gold Round And Marquise Diamond Wedding Ring

“DO NOT REMOVE”

Low Dome Wedding Band

14K Yellow Gold 6.0mm Low Dome Wedding Ring

“BETTER THAN AVOCADO”

Pavé Knife Edge Cathedral

14K Rose Gold Pavé Knife Edge Cathedral Diamond Wedding Ring

“LOVE YOU, DORK”

More ideas:

  • DIGGIN’ YOU
  • WOOT WOOT!
  • YOU’RE HOT
  • NO TAKE BACKS

Multilingual Engravings

 Traditional Slightly Curved

14K Rose Gold 6mm Traditional Slightly Curved Wedding Ring

Amor Vincit Omnia (Latin: Love Conquers All)

Channel Set Diamond

L’amour De Ma Vie (French: Love of my life)

More ideas: 

  • In Omnia Paratus (Latin: Ready For Anything)
  • Ma Raison D’être (French: My Reason For Being)
  • עם כל ליבי (Hebrew: With All My Heart)
  • Mi Tesoro (Spanish: My Treasure)

RING ENGRAVING IDEAS: SONG LYRICS

Engraving song lyrics is a wonderful way to honor you and your partner’s favorite song or to memorialize the lyrics of the first song you’ll dance to as a married couple! Warning: be ready to cry!

Perfectly Matched Pavé Bypass

Platinum Perfectly Matched Pavé Bypass Wedding Ring

“COME AWAY WITH ME”

Round Shaped Diamond

Platinum Round Shaped Diamond Wedding Ring (.50 CTW.)

“AMORE MIO”

Etched Comfort Fit

Platinum 6mm Etched Comfort Fit Wedding Band

“I Am The Luckiest”

“The Luckiest,” Ben Folds

 Women’s Knife Edge

14K Yellow Gold 2.5mm Knife Edge Women's Wedding Ring

“Love You Forever And Forever”

“I Will,” The Beatles

More ideas

  • ” Fly Me to the Moon,” Frank Sinatra.
  • ” You Are the Best Thing,” Ray LaMontagne
  • “It Had to Be You,” Dooley Wilson 
  •  it’s always better when we’re together” “Better Together,” Jack Johnson

Bible Verses

By inscribing a bible verse in your rings, you can say a LOT in just a few characters. These ancient texts hold rich messages that have been beloved for thousands of years. Imbue your bands with an additional special meaning by connecting it to the verse that most resonates with you.

Flat Comfort Fit

Platinum 6mm Flat Comfort Fit Wedding Ring

Song of Solomon 2:16 (I am my beloved’s, and my beloved is mine.)

Bezel Set Diamond

14K White Gold 3mm Bezel Set Diamond Wedding Ring

Ruth 1:16
(Where You Go I Will Go)

More ideas

  • Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Ephesians 4:2
  • I thank my God every time I think of you. Philippians 1:3
  • Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate. Mark 10:9
  • God has poured out his love into our hearts. Romans 5:5
  • I have found the one whom my soul loves. Song of Solomon 3:4

Love Writ Large (and small)

How will you and your partner engrave your rings? This is an excellent chance for you both to eloquently personalize them in a way that honors the nuances of your specific relationship.

Whether you follow in the footsteps of the greats or you break with tradition, choosing your wedding ring engravings wisely will not only add another layer of excitement to your big day, but it will also help you start your marriage off on an extra-special note.

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

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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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How To Figure Out Fancy Colored Diamonds

Fancy colored diamonds are all the rage, but what exactly are they? Are they real? Are they like regular diamonds? And just how do they get their color? Read on to get all the answers and some inspo too!

Fancy Diamonds

In 2021, a new record was set. The largest, most valuable blue diamond was discovered in South Africa. It is larger, has deeper color, than the previous record holder, and this gem is flawless, with the highest color rating available by the GIA. A prize offered to less than 1% of blue diamonds.

The stone took over a year to polish and facet into the 15.10-carat step-cut diamond it is today and now The De Beers Cullinan Blue diamond is valued at $48 million USD.

The De Beers Cullinan Blue diamond

While THIS fancy colored diamond is out of reach for most of us here on the ground, getting your own fancy colored diamond is easier than ever. James Allen carries a variety of sizes and colors to choose from.

So get on board with the trend that is here to stay! From engagement rings to fine jewelry, fancy colored diamonds give that unique, personal edge to your bling. So get ready to sparkle, because embracing color has never been more in style.

What Exactly Are Fancy Colored Diamonds?

Essentially fancy colored diamonds are diamonds that feature a variety of colors. Diamonds normally come in an assortment of colorless options. Meaning that diamonds are either completely colorless all the way to a variety of light yellow.

How Do Fancy Color Diamonds Get Their Color?

While in traditional diamonds color is not desired, in fancy colored diamonds, color is EXACTLY what you want! From dark to light, color is what you are after. So how do they get their color?

These highly prized diamonds, similar to their traditional counterparts, get their color when they are formed. Intense heat and pressure during the diamond’s formation create trace elements that present themselves in a way to create either no color, or for fancy colored diamonds, brilliant color.

The strength of the color depends on the interaction of the trace elements. Whether you prefer a lighter pink or a brighter blue, it’s all about the carbon atoms.

Colored diamonds

The Colors Of The Rainbow

Fancy colored diamonds are available in every color you can think of: pink, blue, purple, green, orange, brown, black, and even red or gray. While traditional diamonds lose value as they gain color, fancy colored diamonds do the opposite.

The stronger the color, the higher the value. Similar to traditional diamonds, fancy colored diamonds gain value the larger the size. The most common colors are in the yellow family, which is great because they are often the most economical choice of fancy colored diamonds.

Fancy colored diamonds

Hue, Saturation, and Tone

Hue, saturation, and tone: what are they and what do they mean? Hue is the main or strongest color of the fancy colored diamond. Fancy colored diamonds can be one color but the hue is the strongest, followed by secondary colors and tints.

Saturation is just how strong the color, or hue, of the fancy colored diamond is. As in, how saturated is the color of the fancy colored diamond. A fancy colored diamond’s saturation can go from “light” to “intense,” all the way to “vivid.”

And finally there is tone. Tone is how light or dark the fancy colored diamond appears and is decided by the amount of brown, black, gray, or white color.

Hue, saturation, and tone all come together to determine a fancy colored diamond’s grade (light, fancy, fancy light, fancy intense, vivid, fancy dark, and fancy deep). Similar to their traditional diamond counterparts, fancy colored diamonds’ value and fit are not determined solely on their grade.

Different strokes for different folks, different grades for different fancy colored diamonds, for different engagement rings.

Engaging Color, Exclusive Style

Fancy colored diamonds are just as real as traditional diamonds and can be used in just as many ways. Fancy colored diamonds are a popular choice, especially for engagement rings and wedding rings. So how do you know which fancy colored diamond is right for you?

Fancy Pink Diamonds

Let’s start with fancy pink diamonds. Fancy pink diamonds have long been a favorite for those who love a burst of color. As part of the rarest of diamond colors, earth created pink (and red) fancy colored diamonds are an extraordinary find, with reports of only approximately 30 being in existence.

Get your very own fancy pink diamond engagement ring with James Allen!

Split Prong Cathedral Engagement Ring

Pink diamond
14K White Gold Split Prong Cathedral Engagement Ring

Fancy Blue Diamonds

Love of color is not specific to pink. Fancy blue diamonds make a beautiful, calming choice. Another rarity, fancy blue colored diamonds are thought to represent spirituality, eternity, truth, and devotion. Getting their hue from boron, with their resemblance of a clear spring sky or a sparkling ocean, it is no wonder fancy blue diamonds are so popular.

Check out this example of a Fancy Blue Diamond Engagement Ring!

Tapered Baguette Diamond Engagement Ring

Blue diamond
Lab-Created 1.37 Carat D-VVS2 Ideal Cut Round Diamond Tapered Baguette Diamond Engagement Ring

Fancy Black Diamonds

Or maybe you wanna go dark like the black diamond ring? Fancy black diamonds have a strong color intensity and sparkle with a metallic shine. These exotic diamonds are a darling of the fashion world.

Found only in a few locations, fancy black diamonds are thought to symbolize love and eternity, making them a fabulously unique way to adorn your finger. Get your own version from James Allen and start showing off!

Petite Pave Engagement Ring

Black diamond
14K White Gold Petite Pave Engagement Ring

Fancy Green Diamonds

Representing life, renewal, and growth, green is a great color for a fancy diamond. Fancy green diamonds are extremely rare, as they are created due to exposure to radiation. The radiation can come from groundwater or radioactive rocks near the earth’s surface.

Often pricier than their counterparts due to their rarity, green diamonds are a lively colorful choice for an engagement ring. And don’t worry, while the stone may get its color from radiation, it is totally safe!

Grande Falling Edge Halo Engagement Ring

Green diamond
14K White Gold Grande Falling Edge Halo Engagement Ring

Looking for another color of the rainbow to make your engagement ring stand out? Check out the many colors of fancy diamonds that James Allen has to offer!

Pros of Fancy Colored DiamondsPros of Traditional Diamonds
Showcase Unique StylePlentiful Choices in Clarity and Cut
Great InvestmentNumerous Affordable Options
More RareClassic Choice

Real Diamonds, Real Fancy

Fancy colored diamonds are not to be confused with gemstones (which also go great with diamonds). Fancy colored diamonds are just as much diamonds as their traditional counterparts.

The advantage is that you can express your personal style in a particularly unique way using color. Check out these examples below or create your own!

And let’s not forget fancy colored brown diamonds, better known as chocolate diamonds.

Bead Accent Pavé Trio Diamond Engagement Ring

In addition to their rarity and value, fancy colored diamonds are extremely popular. At once elegant and trendy, fancy colored diamonds allow you to add an extra level of personal expression. But don’t be fooled by the name, fancy colored diamonds are also good to wear everyday!

Pair with white gold, yellow gold, or platinum, James Allen as a variety of fancy colored diamonds to create the perfect engagement ring. Start shopping today!

Check out our other helpful blogs:

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

Sarah Axelrad

Sarah is a stickler for grammar and prefers to use the Oxford comma. She enjoys her career as a writer since being a professional snowboarder/powerlifter/pastry chef didn’t pan out.

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Your Complete Guide To Lab Created Diamonds

Lab created diamonds are fast becoming a growing trend in the industry for diamond buyers. Here’s everything you need to know from their price, environmental footprint, unique brilliance, and more.

A collection of fancy shaped lab created diamonds

What Are Lab Created Diamonds?

Lab grown diamonds are optically and chemically identical to earth created diamonds. The only difference is their origin. A diamond seed is placed in conditions identical to those in underground mines. Then, a carbon coating is added to help the diamond crystallize as it grows.

The crystalline form of carbon we call “diamond” can be attained only through intense heat, constant pressure, and a good amount of time. Nowadays, we can achieve that in a lab in specialized machines that knock a few billion years off the cooking time. The result is a lab grown diamond that differs from a mined diamond in name only.

If you were to look at both types of diamonds through a professional jeweler’s loupe, or if you were to inspect both diamonds on a molecular level, you would see no difference. The same result was achieved through very different processes.

How Are Lab Grown Diamonds Made?

Lab grown diamonds are manufactured using conditions that mimic the natural process that earth-created diamonds are subject to. Carbon is exposed to high temperatures and high pressure in a controlled environment (laboratory) thus creating a diamond. 

Lab created diamonds can be made using two different methods. The first is known as the HPHT method, where a small diamond seed is placed into a piece of carbon. The carbon is pressurized and exposed to high temperatures. Finally, the pressure and heat then melt the carbon allowing a diamond to form around the initial seed. 

The second is the CVD method, which also requires a diamond seed. The seed is placed into a sealed chamber that is heated and filled with carbon-rich gasses. These gasses are ionized into plasma using advanced technology that breaks down the gasses’ molecules and allows pure carbon to stick to the seed, forming a new diamond. 

Fun fact: It typically takes a lab created diamond less than a month to grow. A 1-carat white diamond takes around two weeks to form, whereas fancy color diamonds like yellow and blue diamonds take between 5-10 days to form. 

Are Lab Created Diamonds Real?

Lab created diamonds are 100% real diamonds. 

If you want to get technical, here’s what you need to know. Lab grown diamonds have the exact same optical, physical, and chemical properties as their mined counterparts. The only significant difference is their origin. One comes from a natural and uncontrolled environment, while the other is physically created in a controlled laboratory. 

Even by definition, the two are indistinguishable. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) defines a diamond as pure crystallized carbon in the isometric cubic system. This means that crystallized carbon is a gemstone known as a diamond regardless of whether a diamond was mined from the earth or grown in a lab. 

Lab Created Diamonds vs. Natural Diamonds

Lab Created Diamonds

  • Lab grown 
  • Formed in under a month 
  • Made of carbon atom structures 
  • Lower price 
  • No resale value 
  • Mass-produced 
  • Available in various diamond shapes and sizes 
  • Eco-friendly & ethically sourced 
  • Certified 

Earth-Created Diamonds

  • Earth made 
  • Formed over billions of years 
  • Made of carbon atom structures 
  • Higher price value 
  • Resale value from 25%-50% 
  • On-of-a-kind 
  • Available in various diamond shapes and sizes
  • Ecologically unfriendly
  • Certified 
A comparison of lab created diamonds on a blue surface next to earth created diamonds on a pink surface

How to Tell the Difference Between Lab Created Diamonds and Natural Diamonds

You can’t tell the difference between lab created diamonds and natural diamonds without specialized equipment, even if you’re a professional gemologist. The best way to tell the difference between lab grown diamonds and natural diamonds is to look at the grading report.

Suppose a professional gemologist tries to determine if a diamond is mined or lab-grown; they would use magnification to look at the nature of the inclusions. The inclusions in a natural diamond appear slightly different than in a lab created diamond. Sometimes differences appear in how the diamond reflects light compared with a synthetic diamond. 

In general, though, when looking at a lab created diamond next to a natural diamond, you can’t distinguish between the two.

A row of different shaped round cut lab created diamonds

What Are The Benefits of Lab Grown Diamonds?

  • Environmentally friendly
  • Greater brightness & higher purity
  • Easily traceable origins
  • Socially responsible (Ethically sourced)
  • Greater affordability at 30% less than mined diamonds
  • You can have a unique fancy color diamond made

Fun fact: Lab created diamonds are grown through a sustainable process. The CVD manufacturing method uses chemical vapor deposition (CVD), which makes it easier to keep up with demand without sacrificing the diamond’s quality while remaining conflict-free and ethically sourced.

Lab Created Diamond vs. Natural Diamond Price

Traditional diamonds are the most expensive choice. The process of discovering, mining, and shipping earth created diamonds is resource-intensive; the high cost of bringing them to market has helped diamonds achieve their luxe reputation.

A lab created diamond is perfect for when you want a real diamond but want to pay 30% less. Because the process of creating a diamond takes significantly less time and resources than mining a diamond from the earth, lab-made diamonds cost significantly less than earth-mined diamonds.

GIA Certified Lab Created Diamonds

Like all earth-created diamonds, lab grown diamonds also come with their very own birth certificate (GIA Certification). 

Since lab grown diamonds are optically and chemically the same as mined diamonds, they come with their own certification. Today, most lab created diamonds are certified by IGI, International Gemological Institute.

Additionally, these diamonds are being accepted and certified by the GIA, the Gemological Institute of America, which has developed sophisticated devices that are used to screen and identify the difference between natural diamonds and lab grown ones. 

A GIA grading certificate

Should You Buy a Lab Created Diamond?

When choosing a stone for your diamond engagement ring, you need to consider your lifestyle, budget, eco-footprint, and more.

You should consider a lab grown diamond if you wear your jewelry often, and it’s important for you to have durable diamonds. It’s also the better option if you’re looking to budget or want a larger diamond at a much lower price.

Lab created diamonds are growing in popularity and are largely recognized as the better option for environmentally and socially conscious consumers.

Finally, if you’re looking for a keepsake, remember, “A diamond is forever.” The oldest diamonds found have existed for nearly 4 billion years, and they’re holding strong. You can rest assured that any loose lab created diamond you buy or set inside your engagement ring or wedding ring can be comfortably passed down from generation to generation.

A selection of lab created diamond engagement rings

Choosing the stone that suits your lifestyle is an important part of designing meaningful jewelry that will last you throughout your life. And if you choose to buy either lab created diamonds or earth-created diamonds, you can choose from 1000’s of beautiful options at James Allen.

Check out our other helpful blogs:

Jessica Thomas

Jessica feels too much anxiety trying to come up with a cool bio. Read her awesome blog post instead.

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Jewelry Insurance 101: Everything You Need to Know

Jewelry Insurance 101: Everything You Need to Know

When you invest in diamond jewelry, you want to ensure that your investment is protected. Whether you just got engaged or finally gifted yourself a beautiful pair of gold earrings, keeping your jewelry safe is so important. The question is, do you have jewelry insurance? Or do you really need it? We’re answering all your questions and giving you all there is to know about jewelry insurance. 

We often insure the most expensive items we own, such as our cars or homes. But in many cases, we don’t think about our jewelry? Your jewelry is something that holds more than just sentimental value as it can be a symbol of love or legacy, and these pieces are often irreplaceable. Read on to find all the answers to some of the most common questions about jewelry insurance.

What Is Jewelry Insurance?

Jewelry insurance is, unfortunately, an unknown concept to most people, but protecting your jewelry by having insurance is a very smart move. 

Jewelry insurance works just like any other insurance. It is an important guarantee that will give you the peace of mind you need in case of any unfortunate event. However, this insurance specifically covers your precious pieces including, diamond necklaces, earrings, engagement rings, or any other valuable jewelry. Insurance is defined as a form of risk management that protects you from financial repercussions in the event that your jewelry is damaged, stolen, or lost. These policies normally cover all jewelry items submitted for coverage and result in either replacement, repair, or reimbursement of costs. 

14K White Gold Twisted Pavé Halo Engagement Ring

How Does Jewelry Insurance Work?

In terms of coverage, most jewelry insurance policies will cover the full spectrum. When items are stolen, damaged, or lost, your policy takes effect. Most of the time, jewelry insurance is more comprehensive than your regular homeowner’s policy. And while the majority of those do cover jewelry, it tends to be a smaller amount and only if the piece of jewelry is stolen. 

When To Get Jewelry Insurance

Fortunately, anyone can get jewelry insurance at any time for new or existing items. For example, if you and your partner are about to purchase wedding rings, you can insure them from day one. However, if you’ve built up a collection of diamond jewelry over time and are only thinking about insurance now, don’t worry, the option is available for you too. If this is the case, you will most likely need to show proof of purchase or get a valuation done if you lost those documents.

The same applies to heirloom jewelry pieces. While it would be impossible to truly replace a diamond bracelet that once belonged to your great-grandmother,  you can have the item appraised so that a policy could be purchased for it.

How To Get Insurance On Jewelry? 

Most basic homeowners or renters insurance policies provide some coverage for your valuables such as jewelry. For the most part, it will only cover your jewelry up to a certain amount of dollars. A standard policy commonly has a coverage limit which is generally around $1,500. This means that your insurance company won’t pay more than this amount as reimbursement if your jewelry is stolen 
It is important to note that selecting a company that specializes in jewelry insurance will most likely give you more comprehensive coverage.

How Much Does Jewelry Insurance Cost

Just like with all types of policies, jewelry insurance costs are based on the value of each item, how often you wear the piece, and the amount of coverage you wish to have. Experts claim that typically between 1 – 3% of the item’s overall value is paid each year. Basically, if your diamond engagement ring costs $10, 000, you will end up paying $100 to $300 in annual insurance premiums.

You can avoid paying too much for your jewelry if you know exactly how much it costs. For example, overestimating its value could result in paying more than you need to. Alternatively, if you underestimate it, you might lose out financially in the event of a claim.

It’s also important to note that rates vary depending on where you live. You can get a quick and simple estimate of what you can expect to pay in your state on Jewelers Mutual’s homepage by using their free estimate tool. 

18K Yellow Gold East-West Knife Edge Cathedral Solitaire Engagement Ring
18K Yellow Gold East-West Knife Edge Cathedral Solitaire Engagement Ring

How Can I Keep The Cost of My Jewelry Insurance Low?

When shopping around for insurance or buying a standalone jewelry insurance policy, it’s important to compare prices to find the best policy for you. Additionally, there are several different things that can easily help keep the cost of your jewelry insurance low. 

It may be possible to reduce your premiums if you have security measures such as a burglar alarm and quality locks. Or, you could consider purchasing a safe to keep your jewelry in when not in use. Even if you don’t show off your stunning jewels, you can never be sure they will be safe at home. In fact, jewelry is one of the most commonly stolen items out of homes. 

What Is Engagement Ring Insurance?

From the very moment you say “yes,” and begin rocking your new, dazzling addition on your hand, the thought of getting engagement ring insurance may be the furthest thing from your mind. But as they say, with great rings come great responsibilities. And, fortunately, during such a happy time, jewelry insurance can provide the peace of mind you need for less than you think. 

An engagement ring is among one of the most expensive things you will buy or own in your lifetime. So why not insure it? 

Engagement rings are also highly susceptible to damage or loss. Think about it, it is typically worn every day which increases the likelihood that it will be lost, damaged, or stolen.

Does JamesAllen.com Insure Jewelry?

Although we provide you with an insurance appraisal that you can use to obtain coverage, we do not provide jewelry insurance.

We know that jewelry mishaps are way too common but luckily we at JamesAllen.com have partnered with Jewelers Mutual (JM) Insurance Company. Together we provide you with warranties against damage AND comprehensive jewelry insurance – so you can be protected against wear-and-tear, loss, theft, or extensive damage. 

Insuring your jewelry with Jewelers Mutual® Jewelry Insurance is quick and easy, and leaves you with a feeling of emotional and financial security. Learn more and get your free quote today. 

Jewelers Mutual® Jewelry Insurance Advantages:

  • Comprehensive worldwide coverage that extends beyond ordinary homeowners insurance;
  • Protection against theft, damage, accidental loss, and mysterious disappearance;
  • Flexibility to choose your own jeweler;
  • Repair of damaged jewelry with the same level of quality as the original;
  • Replacement of lost jewelry with the same brand and type;
  • Graduate Gemologists (GIA) with a passion for jewelry on staff.
18K Yellow Gold Falling Edge Pavé Diamond Engagement Ring

Ask The Right Questions

Being adequately informed is super important when deciding which insurance option or provider is best suited to your needs. Here are some great questions to ask while researching diamond jewelry insurance policies:

  • Is there a deductible or discount if you have a home security system?
  • If you’re insured for replacement (instead of a cash payout), where can you purchase a new ring?
  • Are you covered for the full replacement cost of the diamond jewelry and will you receive a cash settlement or a replacement item?
  • What happens if a suitable replacement cannot be found?
  • How will you need to prove the piece of jewelry was stolen if you make a claim?
  • Are there any circumstances that aren’t covered?
  • In the event of a damaged or lost item overseas, does the policy cover you fully?
  • Are you covered for damage or just loss and theft?
  • Will the policy adjust according to inflation?
  • What types of repairs contribute to the deductible?
  • How often do you have to provide appraisal reports to the insurance company, and which ones do they accept?
FAQs about jewelry insurance

Tips on Insuring Your Jewelry?

  • Make sure you compare insurance companies online or by phone before you choose one.
  • Read all the details of the policy carefully before you pay for extra insurance.
  • Make sure you understand the rules of the particular insurance company you choose.
  • To avoid any nasty surprises should you need to make a claim, you should read the terms and conditions of your jewelry or contents insurance policy carefully.
  • Check whether your jewelry is covered for the total replacement cost and if you can receive a cash settlement instead of a replacement item.
  • It’s important to know that your insurance company may require periodic appraisals.
  • Find out if you are eligible for a discount if you have a security system, such as an alarm.

FAQs About Jewelry Insurance

  1. Does JamesAllen.com provide insurance appraisals?

Yes. Every finished engagement ring or piece of fine jewelry valued at $1,000 or higher will be accompanied by a full insurance evaluation.

  1. Does JamesAllen.com offer additional insurance coverage?

We have collaborated with the Jewelers Mutual (JM) Group to provide an upgraded 3-year or lifetime protection plan that protects your jewelry against even more of life’s surprises. You can purchase either one of these plans during checkout or at any time afterward. Click here to see what’s covered and learn how to upgrade your warranty.

  1. What Is Covered Under Jewelry Insurance?

Generally, it differs between insurance policies, but rings (including wedding and engagement rings), earrings, bracelets, necklaces, loose diamonds, and watches are typically covered by jewelry insurance. We recommend looking for an insurance company that provides the exact coverage you need. 

14K Yellow Gold Two Prong Lab Created Diamond Tennis Bracelet
14K Yellow Gold Floral Halo Engagement Ring

The bottom line is that you never know what the future holds, right? So better to be sparkly and safe than sorry! 

Have any further questions? Feel free to contact our customer service team.

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

Interested in improving your diamond and jewelry knowledge? Check out the articles below!

Tarryn Snoyman

Tarryn is a content writer by day and a criminology enthusiast by night.

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Ring Anatomy 101: All You Need To Know

Looking to buy an engagement ring but not sure what all the different bits and bobs of a ring are? Let us walk you through the anatomy of a ring so you can find the one that fits you best!

Various loose parts of engagement rings

The beginning of your engagement ring shopping doesn’t need to feel daunting. Maybe you’ve already got a clear idea of what you want, and you’re just unsure of all the ring terminology. Or, you have no idea which ring style is best for you or your partner and you need some help from the experts. Whatever side of the equation you’re standing on, we’re here to guide you. 

There are many different ring settings to choose from, and each setting has multiple design features. The good news is that once you know what these settings are, the ring buying process will be that much easier and, dare we say, exciting. Knowing the difference between these parts can help you and your partner understand exactly what you want, not to mention, that if you’re going to custom design the ring yourself, you’ll need a little lesson in ring anatomy 101. 

Worried you might still be confused? We’ve got plenty of fun infographics to help pinpoint each area of a ring’s anatomy. Let’s get started! 

Engagement ring styles

The Different Parts Of A Ring 

Center Stone

The center stone of the ring refers to the diamond or gemstone that sits at the center of the ring setting. The center stone is usually the largest stone on the ring and traditionally features a round-cut diamond or gemstone. However, each engagement ring can be fitted with the center stone of your choice, not excluding fancy-shaped diamonds or gemstones like oval, pear, emerald, princess, and marquise cuts. 

Basket

A basket is a prong setting that has traditional prongs extending up from the base of the metal band and a horizontal band that connects the prongs to provide enough tension to hold the center stone in place. This creates a basket shape for the diamond or gemstone to sit in. 

Bridge

The bridge of a ring refers to the area underneath the head of the ring that sits on the wearer’s finger. This area typically needs to be comfortable with no sharp edges. It’s hardly seen once the ring is on, however, it can feature a small diamond or gemstone accent, or patterned engraving. 

Gallery

A functional and decorative feature, the gallery of a ring is located between the basket and bridge on the ring’s head. The traditional engagement rings often featured open galleries, allowing the bottom part of the center stone to be visible. However, on 3 stone rings the gallery might also include these added accents. 

An infographic explaining what a center stone, gallery, bridge, and basket are in a ring

Settings

The setting refers to the entire ring and the way added stones have been set on the ring. You’ll find there are various setting types to suit your unique style. But not all settings are created equal. Some settings are simple while others are more complex. Whichever setting you choose will determine how the final look of your ring, but more importantly, your chosen setting will affect the cost and maintenance of it, too. Let’s dive into the different types of settings. 

  1. Solitaire

Simple and timeless is how we’d describe a solitaire setting. It’s effortless in design, as a plain or two-toned metal band with a single center stone. Solitaire engagement rings can feature a variety of different prong settings and the band itself isn’t limited to a single design either. 

14K White Gold Ten Prong Solitaire Engagement Ring
14K White Gold Woven Solitaire Engagement Ring
  1. Pavé

The French word pavé, meaning to pave stones, might help you to remember this ring setting. A pavé setting refers to small stones featured along the line of the band, like cobblestones. It’s a delicate and often favored setting because it offers the ring-wearer some extra sparkle to complement the center stone. 

14K White Gold East-West Pavé Cathedral Diamond Engagement Ring
14K White Gold Petite Pavé Engagement Ring
  1. Channel Set

Channel set settings are side diamonds embedded into a grooved channel of the band. Think of it as if the rows of diamonds are cemented between two walls of metal. Light can still reflect off the diamonds but they’re as exposed as side diamonds on pavé settings. 

14K Yellow Gold 0.25ct Channel Set Princess Shaped Diamond Engagement Ring
14K Yellow Gold Thin Channel Set Round Shaped Diamond Engagement Ring
  1. Three Stone 

A three stone setting usually features a center stone with two diamonds or gemstones sitting flush on either side of it. What’s fun about this setting is that the two additional stones don’t necessarily need to be the same diamond shape as the center stone. 

14K Yellow Gold Three Stone Emerald And Pavé Set Diamond Engagement Ring
14K Yellow Gold Three Stone Pear Shaped Emerald Engagement Ring
  1. Side-Stone 

More sparkle for your center stone is how we like to think of side stone settings. A side-stone setting can include any number of additional stones along with the band of the ring. These stones can be cut and placed in any number of beautiful ways and truly bring out the brilliance of the center stone. 

14K Rose Gold Scattered Blooms Undulated Diamond Engagement Ring
14K Rose Gold Bypass Marquise Array Diamond Engagement Ring
  1. Tension

Looking for a setting that can be admired from a mile away? That’d be a tension setting. This setting uses compressions to hold the center diamond in place, giving the appearance that the diamond is suspended in midair. The setting is usually made from a thick metal band and is sure to stand out in a crowd. 

14K Two-Tone White And Yellow Gold Pear Shaped Swirl Tension Setting
14K White Gold Contoured Twist Tension Set Engagement Ring
  1. Halo 

The halo setting is one that typically encircles the center stone with round pavé or micro-pavé diamonds. The small accent stones can make the center stone appear larger. A halo setting can take on the same or a different shape than the center stone. 

14K Yellow Gold Scalloped Cathedral Halo Diamond Engagement Ring
14K Yellow Gold Pavé Halo And Shank Diamond Engagement Ring (Pear Center)
  1. Bezel

A bezel setting uses no prongs and instead is designed with a rim of metal holding the center stone. The surrounding metal only leaves the upper portion of the diamond or gemstone visible. This setting is perfectly designed to keep the center stone safe and secure.

14K White Gold Comfort Fit Bezel Set Solitaire Engagement Ring
14K White Gold Pavé Bypass Bezel Set Diamond Engagement Ring

Prongs 

The prongs on a ring’s head are small metal projections or claws, either rounded, pointed, or v-shaped. Prongs extend up the ring’s basket and are used to secure the center stone in place and hold it there. There are various types of prong settings, the most popular for engagement rings being four or six prongs – enough to leave the diamond visible and able to reflect light and sparkle. 

Side Or Accent Stones

Side or accent stones are the stones that flank the sides of the center stone and are attached to the shoulders or the shank of the setting. Accent or side stone can encircle the entire ring in an eternity style or just decorate a small position of the ring. These accents aren’t limited to diamonds but can be tiny gems, too, of any fancy shape.

Shoulder 

Naturally, the shoulder helps to keep the head of the ring up. It’s the area where the shank and the ring setting meet and can be adorned with small diamond or gem accents. 

Shank 

Shank is more commonly known as the circular metal band that goes around the entire finger. A ring’s shank can take on many unique designs, from, twisted, curved, flat, and even split shank. As with most of a ring’s anatomy, the shank can also feature small diamond or gemstone accents. When choosing a ring it’s important the shank is comfortable and amplifies the appearance of the ring itself. 

An infographic explaining what the shank, side stones, prongs, and shoulder are in a ring

Build Your Engagement Ring

At JamesAllen.com, we give you the ultimate custom-design experience in our very own ring studio. Watch your engagement ring change to your specifications in real-time. Now that you’ve got a clearer idea about ring anatomy, the only limit is your imagination. 

Design engagement ring online

Let’s Sum It Up

We hope this lesson on ring anatomy helps you on your journey to finding the perfect engagement ring. And if you’re planning to design it yourself, take everything we’ve just taught you and give our ring studio a try for the ultimate ring custom designing experience.

Still got questions? Feel free to visit us at James Allen and chat with one of our diamond and jewelry experts, available to you 24/7. 

Need some engagement ring inspiration? Check out these helpful posts:

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

Jessica Thomas

Jessica feels too much anxiety trying to come up with a cool bio. Read her awesome blog post instead.

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Cover

The Best Engagement Ring For Each Diamond Shape

Have your eye set on a particular diamond shape and you are looking for the best mounting to make it shine? Read on for the best engagement ring setting for any diamond shape.

Engagement rings with diamonds

Over time, popularity shifts between which diamond shapes are going to offer the most finger space coverage and sparkle. No matter your preference, there’s a unique diamond for everyone and yearly engagement ring trends to help sway you.

You can choose one of two ways to design your custom engagement ring at James Allen: 1) you can start with a setting and then choose a diamond to match, or 2) you can start with a diamond and then choose a complementary setting. 

If you’re the latter, this is your how-to guide. Each diamond shape has its own unique qualities and it’s crucial to know how to best show them off. 

Deciding Your Diamond Shape

If you’re looking for an elongated shaped diamond for your favorite engagement ring setting, it’s sure to provide two elegant optical illusions.

Because these shapes look larger than they really are, they are quite easy on your wallet. You can definitely spend less and still get a sizable diamond to flaunt. In fact, a 1-carat oval diamond has 10% more facets than a 1-carat round brilliant diamond. And the more facets your diamond boasts, the more it glitters.

  1. These diamonds look larger than their carat weight.
  2. They seem to lengthen the wearer’s finger.

How should you complement the length of a marquise, pear, or oval shape in your ring setting? Tapering.

Ring shanks that widen and taper into the diamond, whether via split bands or side stones, provide an elegant transition that also emphasizes the stone’s breadth. 

Marquise Cut

The pointiest diamond shape of them all isn’t for the faint-hearted. This boat-shaped diamond is bold and growing in popularity as a must-have for 2022. Marquise cut diamonds are known for their historical heritage and go back centuries — once being modeled by royalty.

This cut is not only perfect for most diamond engagement rings but compliments other gems like sapphires, rubies, and emeralds.

Our recommendation: Marquise cut diamonds shine their brightest when centered in a bypass shank pavé setting.

Bypass Pavé Kite-Set Engagement Ring

14K White Gold Bypass Pavé Kite-Set Engagement Ring

“if the value of the ring was measured in beauty alone it was worth every penny” -Adam S.

Pear Cut

Go asymmetrical! This shape combines the best of two worlds: round brilliant and marquise. The curve of a round diamond gradually leads into the pointed elegance of a marquise. A pear cut diamond can offer more finger coverage and give the added illusion of a larger diamond than a round cut diamond with the same carat weight.

Our recommendation: Pear cut diamonds are best set in a north-south orientation and receive that “wow” factor when complemented by side-stone ring settings.

Laurel Leaves Engagement Ring

14K Rose Gold Laurel Leaves Diamond Engagement Ring

“I am really happy with how my ring turned out. This band is dainty and classic looking. It pairs perfectly with my pear diamond.” -Elvia D.

Oval Cut

Oval cut diamonds are a popular shape with many advantages. 

  1. They have no sharp corners, meaning they’re less prone to catching on clothes. 
  2. They have all the beauty of the classic round diamond with the perks of a lengthened shape.
  3. Each diamond has a unique length-to-width ratio, meaning you can find a unique shape that suits your style.

Ovals that are longer are considered more elegant, while wider shapes display less of a bow-tie effect. Generally, the appearance of a bow-tie shadow in an elongated shape is considered less desirable, but it’s really up to the personal taste of the wearer. Finally, this diamond has no sharp corners, making it a better investment if you’re afraid of chipping.

Our recommendation: 2022 has deemed oval cut diamond solitaire engagement rings a fan favorite. Hop on this growing trend and slip on a classic in yellow or rose gold.

Classic Split Shank Solitaire Engagement Ring

14K Yellow Gold Classic Split Shank Solitaire Diamond Engagement Ring

“This ring is comfortable, the band is thin and petite just how I wanted it. The diamond is SOOOOO SHINEY!!!! Of course the pictures cannot do it justice. Pure perfection here.” – Kylee B.

Square Shaped Diamonds For Engagement Rings

Squarish shapes are some of the oldest diamond shapes, and they still hold that classic charm. The following four shapes benefit from angular settings that mirror their straight edges.

Lines, squarish side stones, and edged bands all enhance their angular facets.

Princess Cut

Princess cut diamonds, like round cuts, typically contain 58 facets that function to maximize light dispersion for optimal fire and brilliance. All of these facets pack a massive amount of light into a neat little square.

Our recommendation: Princess cut diamonds are for the bold and royalty needs a strong entourage— so the only setting worthy of this firey brilliance is a side-stone setting with stunning diamond accents.

Blossom Tree Engagement Ring

14K Rose Gold Blossom Tree Diamond Engagement Ring

“The rose gold blossom band is wonderful and with the diamond they all glitter and sparkle together so much, that it can’t help but draw everyone’s attention!” -Stephen L.

Emerald Cut

An emerald cut diamond’s limited facets tend to reveal inclusions, making it the perfect cut for flaunting a diamond’s clarity. Aim for an emerald cut stone with minimal inclusions. Emerald cut diamonds also reveal color more easily than other shapes do, so choose a high color grade if you’re setting your diamond in white metal.

However, setting a “warmer” diamond in yellow or rose gold will make the diamond appear more colorless; you can opt for a lower color grade and invest your money in clarity.

Even though an emerald cut diamond is squared, it’s also elongated. This means that its length creates the optical illusion of elegantly “lengthening” the wearer’s fingers.

Our recommendation: Emerald cut diamonds make a statement on their own and so we say keep it simple with a small twist. Set your emerald diamond at an east-west orientation in a timeless solitaire setting.

East-West Knife Edge Engagement Ring  

14K Yellow Gold East-West Knife Edge Cathedral Solitaire Engagement Ring

“Would highly recommend this unique east-west setting. I love it!” -Julia W.

Radiant Cut

Made up of a staggering 70 facets on their pavilion and crown, radiant cut diamonds can disperse more light than other square and rectangular-shaped stones. Practically, this translates into way more brilliance and fire than is found in traditional step cut diamonds.

Radiant diamonds tolerate a good amount of inclusions; in fact, when it comes to clarity they’re pretty much the opposite of emerald cut diamonds. If you’re thinking about purchasing a radiant diamond, save money on clarity and invest in the most colorless diamond you can.

Our recommendation: Radiant cut diamonds have a softer side than most square-shaped diamonds. You can make sure your diamond is the center of attention by having it set in an unforgettable channel setting.

Bow-Tie Channel Set Engagement Ring

“It was one thing to be impressed enough on the online shop with how the ring would look, but when it arrived and I saw it with my own eyes I was lost for words!” -Baxter W.

Asscher Cut

The Asscher cut is the even-sided cousin of the emerald cut. It’s all the beauty of an oblong emerald cut, concentrated into a squared shape. The many, close-set concentric facets give off a “hall of mirrors” effect which is undeniably eye-catching.

These stunning diamonds are clear and bright, often sparkling the way they do because of their centralized facets. 

They won’t give the same finger coverage as a pear or oval shape, but their unique pattern is enchanting for anyone looking to wear vintage glamor. 

Our recommendation: Asscher cut diamonds are the embodiment of art deco making their ideal ring setting a vintage design or a channel setting for the minimalist wearer.

Thin Channel Set Engagement Ring

14K Yellow Gold Thin Channel Set Round Shaped Diamond Engagement Ring

“I don’t know what I can say. The product in my hand is way better-looking than the model picture.” -Mattias R.

Round Shaped Diamonds For Engagement Rings

Rounded diamonds are some of the most agreeable shapes in that they suit nearly every setting. Their soft edges work well in a range of styles, but they’re the best set off in settings that hug their curves. Go for halos and other settings that surround your main diamond with accent stones.

Cushion Cut

A squarish shape with rounded corners, the cushion cut diamond has been beloved for over a century! It’s a descendent of one of the first widely popular cuts from the 18th century, the old mine cut.

However, cushion cut diamonds contain more delicate facets and a lower crown. This shape is experiencing a resurgence in popularity as couples throwback to the classics.

Their soft pillow-like appearance is a pleasant contrast from our other favorite fancy shaped diamonds, which sport sharper edges. We highly recommend this shape if you’re looking for a delicate temperament diamond.

Our recommendation: Cushion cut diamonds look exceptional in halo settings which will, without doubt, create an enchanting display of glittering brilliance.

Cushion Outline Pavé Engagement Ring

18K White Gold Cushion Outline Pavé Engagement Ring

“The cushion frame, the diamonds on the top and around its edge, really gives it originality and intriguing appeal. It showcased my diamond’s brilliance while adding a lot of pop to my fiancé’s finger.” -Ryan L.

Heart Cut

This romantic shape isn’t for the faint of heart. Heart shaped diamonds put a modern twist on the classic round brilliant cut. With a round diamond’s beloved facet pattern, and a cheeky heart shape, these stones are made for ring shoppers who have no problem progressing tradition.

Our recommendation: There’s no denying that a heart cut diamond makes a statement no matter the chosen ring setting. However, a halo setting is the only way to truly amplify this unique diamond shape.

Shared Prong Marquise Halo Engagement Ring

14K White Gold Shared Prong Marquise Halo Diamond Engagement Ring

“Amazing shopping experience and a beautiful selection. My fiancé loves her ring!” – Joseph L.

Round Cut

Boasting 58 glittering facets and in a perfectly symmetrical cut, the round brilliant diamond is, by far, the best-selling diamond shape on the market. After all, how do you improve on perfection? Its peerless charm suits every ring setting.

There’s a reason it’s the most popular center stone for engagement ring buyers. You will never go wrong with a timeless round cut diamond in any ring setting you choose because it shines just as bright in a simple solitaire setting as it would be surrounded by side stones or adorned in a pavé halo.

Our recommendation: If you choose to go with a round center stone, you’ll give yourself the best opportunity to pick any ring setting that truly speaks to your unique personality and style.

Pavé Rope Engagement Ring

14K White Gold Pavé Rope Engagement Ring

“Simple elegance. My now fiancée wanted something that was not just a ring, but that would not overtake her finger!” -Adolfo L.

Need a hand to find the perfect diamond shape to go with your ideal ring setting? Inspect the diamond of your choice in 360° HD and 40x zoom with the guidance of a professional gemologist!

Our Real-Time Diamond Inspection is a game-changer for online ring shoppers.

Make The Most Of Your Diamond Shape:

  1. Your GIA Certification, Explained
  2. How To Fully Customize Your Ring 
  3. Earth-Created vs. Lab-Created Diamonds: A Guide
  4. Why Carat Weight Matters Less Than You Think

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

Sarah Axelrad

Sarah is a stickler for grammar and prefers to use the Oxford comma. She enjoys her career as a writer since being a professional snowboarder/powerlifter/pastry chef didn’t pan out.

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cover image amethyst jewelry - Amethyst February Birthstone Blog

The February Birthstone: Amazing Amethyst

Don royal purple with the February birthstone: amethyst! This unusually-hued gemstone will make any wearer into an instant queen.

 

February Birthstone

Amethyst jewelry is the go-to purchase for February birthdays and Valentine’s gifts. The February birthstone is stunning yet graceful, rewarding those bold enough to wear it with plenty of turned heads!

What is the Birthstone for February?

It’s amethyst! Amethyst is a violet type of quartz, the crystalline mineral silicon dioxide. This is a great jewelry gemstone, as it’s not only gorgeous, but also sufficiently resilient to withstand day-to-day wear. It rates a 7 on the Mohs Scale of Hardness, indicating that it’s pretty difficult to scratch. Amethyst is a jewel that’s ready to keep up with your active lifestyle.

The History of Amethyst

Amethyst isn’t only good in the form of birthstone jewelry. This gemstone takes its name from the ancient Greek belief that it could protect its bearer from poison and drunkenness: a- (not) + methysko (intoxicating). Not only was amethyst worn as talismanic jewelry, but it was also carved into cups to prevent over-tipsiness.

With all due respect to the ancient Greeks, we disagree. Amethyst is positively intoxicating!

Amethyst February Birthstone

How to Style Amethyst

Purple can be a tricky color to style, and a trickier one to style well. When it comes to amethyst, it looks best when paired with certain colors of clothes.

  • similar shades of purple
  • neutral shades: black, white, gray, silver or gold.

As for who can wear amethyst, everyone’s in luck. Amethystian purple hedges both cool and warm tones, and as such it complements any complexion. Jewelry-wearers of the world, rejoice! This is your sign to rock amethyst jewelry.

Who Wears Amethyst?

Perhaps because of its royal connotations, but most certainly because of its beauty, amethyst is a solid favorite among red carpet celebrities. And as you can see, stars like Diane Kruger and Zoe Saldana are also fans of pairing their jewels with purple fabrics. 

Diane Kruger- Amethyst February Birthstone
Zoe Saldana - Amethyst February Birthstone

The Value of Amethyst Birthstone

Amethyst is valued primarily by the quality of its color rather than its carat weight. Meaning that you can score a heftily-sized gemstone for a much more reasonable price than other jewels. 

Amethyst Stone Meaning

The February gemstone is also rife with meaning. In the past, Tibetan Buddhist monks considered it holy and carved prayer beads from it and English royalty reserved it for themselves due to its sacred properties. And amethyst became the February birthstone thanks to the legendary St. Valentine, who donned an amethyst ring as he performed illicit marriages; this eventually led to the modern-day practice of gifting amethyst jewelry on Valentine’s Day. Modern-day lore claims that it is a powerful protective stone with cognitive and emotional stimulating properties.

Amethyst Rings

Deck your digits with a purple ring or two (or three), so you can punctuate every gesture with lavender. Choose a small stone for everyday wearing and stacking, or pump up the purple and go crazy with an oversized amethyst cocktail ring.

Petite Amethyst
Birthstone Ring

“Perfect in every way. I chose this for my 9 year old daughter, and she was beyond bedazzled with it. The metal and the gemstone are beautiful.”
– Johanna T.

Doubled Amethyst
and Diamond Ring

“A beautifully designed ring! The few diamonds on the ring next to the amethyst are a subtle compliment overall.”
-Marcin B.

Amethyst Earrings

Frame your face with two delicate purple gemstones. Amethyst earrings look particularly lovely on wearers with blue and brown eyes. And of course, they’re absolutely plum-colored stunning on those with violet-colored irises!

Cultured Pearl
and Amethyst Earrings

“The earrings were well made and delicate. My wife loved it as a birthday gift.”
– Felipe S.

Oval-Cut Amethyst
Stud Earrings

“This was a gift for my daughter-in-law and she was very happy.”
– Josette B.

Amethyst Necklaces

A single amethyst worn around the neck is known to protect its wearer from boring jewelry choices. Flaunt your unique personal style with a unique purple gemstone, set in precious metal.

Amethyst Birthstone
Necklace

“The birthstone necklace was stunning; the perfect birthday gift for my wife; she was mesmerized by it.” – Jonathan O.

Victorian Diamond
and Amethyst Necklace

“I bought this to celebrate the birth of our daughter and my wife loves it!” -Jason K.

The February Birthstone: Purple Reign

If you’re a February baby, or you’re looking for the perfect February gift, you are in luck! Amethyst is strong, affordable, and complements every complexion. Take your pick of any of the amethyst fan favorites listed above. 

January Garnets * February Amethysts * March Aquamarines * April Diamonds * May Emeralds * June Pearls * July Rubies * August Peridots * September Sapphires * October Opal * November Citrines * December Blue Topaz.

Read up on more birthstone beauties

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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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Simulant Diamonds vs. Lab Created Diamonds: Everything You Need To Know

If you’re looking for an affordable alternative to a traditional diamond, you’ve come to the right place. We’re explaining the pros and cons of real diamonds and diamond simulants, so you can choose the right stone for you.

Pair of tweezers and various fancy shaped diamonds

Note: At James Allen, we sell only U.S. Federal Trade Commission-certified true diamonds, which include both lab created diamonds and earth-created diamonds.

What’s A “Real Diamond”?

The term “diamond” refers to a very specific stone: the crystalline form of carbon. While other forms of carbon exist, what makes a diamond special is its particular atomic configuration.

A carbon atom can bond with a maximum of 4 other atoms – and in diamond, all the available spots are taken by…other carbon atoms! That’s right, it’s carbon all the way. And this results in an extremely stable, super hard, super sparkling stone. 

Real Diamonds

Lab Created Diamonds

The crystalline form of carbon we call “diamond” can be attained only through intense heat, constant pressure, and a good amount of time. Nowadays, we can achieve that in a lab in specialized machines that knock a few billion years off the cooking time. The result is a lab-made diamond that differs from an earth-created diamond in name only.

If you were to look at both types of diamonds through a professional jeweler’s loupe, or if you were to inspect both diamonds on a molecular level, you would see no difference. The same result was achieved through very different processes.

Lab-grown diamonds and earth-created diamonds are optically and chemically identical, the only difference being their relative origins. And this difference in origin leads lab grown diamonds to flaunt a much lower price point.

Lab Created Diamonds

Simulants, however, are not diamonds. They’re different minerals that bear a resemblance to diamonds. We’ll dig into two of the most popular diamond simulants: cubic zirconia and moissanite.

Diamond Simulants: Cubic Zirconia and Moissanite

Diamond simulants are various types of man-made stones that are synthesized for the purpose of being diamond lookalikes. These clear, sparkling stones mimic the beauty of a diamond, but at a much lower cost. However, they do display marked differences to both lab-created and earth-mined diamonds in non-visual traits.

Why does this matter? It’s important to remember that clarity is only one characteristic of jewelry stones. Color, resilience, and sparkle vary between these different stones; stones’ specific characteristics can greatly affect how you wear them in jewelry, and their lifetime cost to you.

Cubic Zirconia

What is cubic zirconia?

Cubic zirconia is arguably the most popular diamond simulant. It’s a man-made, crystalline form of zirconium dioxide. 

How is cubic zirconia made?

In a laboratory, zirconium oxide powder is melted into various stabilizing agents at a super-high temperature of nearly