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Top Tips For Choosing The Perfect Wedding Jewelry

Need inspiration for picking out the best wedding jewelry for brides? We’ve got several useful tips for choosing the perfect wedding jewelry to make you glow on your special day.

Wedding jewelry

Congratulations, you’re about to walk down the aisle!!! We know it’s stressful, with all the wedding planning and last-minute hurdles, but it’s still a one-of-a-kind moment you’ll remember forever. And at this moment, it’s only fitting that you look and feel your absolute best! 

First, you say yes to the dress, and then you get to accessorize! But what wedding jewelry fits you best as a bride? We’re here to help you figure that out. 

Keep reading to learn how to choose the best wedding jewelry for your chosen bridal style. 

Wedding Jewelry Ideas & Inspiration

Picking out all the little bits and bobs for your wedding day can be tiring, especially if you have pesky opinions following your every move. But remember, this day is all about you and how you want to look and feel. Ignore the noise and follow your heart. 

Easier said than done, we know! It goes without saying that every bride and groom needs a little inspo, whether you’re adding ideas to your Pinterest board or looking online. 

So let’s start by understanding what type of look you’re going for. Our hot tip here is to keep your wedding dress style in mind. It’s the simplest way to go about choosing your wedding jewelry. 

Classic Wedding Jewelry

The classics are loved for a reason. It’s known that bridal jewelry usually sways toward the ever-popular pearl. Pearl jewelry sets are a traditional choice for brides-to-be because they add the perfect chic aesthetic. 

If your bridal look is classic chic, make a play for pearls. You can always find pearl jewelry in various colors, from white, pink, gray, and black. Shop online to find a wider variety of styles, designs, and metal choices. 

Romantic Wedding Jewelry

Romantic wedding jewelry moves more towards fairytale-inspired styles, from floral designs to jewelry set in rose gold. Here, you want to pick pieces that are a little softer on the eyes, perhaps with light colors that speak to the romantic element you’re adding to your bridal look. 

This look is especially memorable for daytime weddings that are set in gardens, vineyards, or any nature-centric venue. Captivate your groom and guests by choosing wedding jewelry that makes you look like the woodland bride you dreamed of being. 

Romantic wedding jewelry

Diamond Wedding Jewelry

This one is for the bride who wants to make a glittering statement and remain the center of attention throughout her special day. Diamond wedding jewelry and, more importantly, diamond wedding jewelry sets are perfect for the bride who wants all eyes on her. 

In this case, you should be looking out for a tennis bracelet, diamond necklace, and diamond earrings. We know the word “diamond” might shake the wedding budget. But fear not; you can always opt for lab grown diamond jewelry at a third of the price of earth created diamond jewelry. 

Let this be your “something new” gift if your family and friends are so inclined! 

Diamond wedding jewelry

Boho Wedding Jewelry

Now, this is for the bride who loves all things boho. Boho weddings have been on-trend for many years now, and their popularity isn’t slowing down anytime soon. For the bride who wants to throw tradition to the wind (or tone it down a bit), we’ve got the perfect tips for picking your wedding jewelry. 

Don’t be afraid to mix and match metals and add several mismatched designs to your wedding day look. Try jewelry designs with textures, organic gemstone colors, and don’t be afraid to try on some larger-shaped jewelry. 

Boho wedding jewelry

Our Top Tips For Picking Bridal Jewelry 

Once you’ve put your bridal style into a specific category, remember to keep these top tips in mind for choosing your wedding jewelry.

Incorporate Your Sentimental Accessories

Make your day even more meaningful by adding your family heirlooms to your bridal accessories. Whether it be an old piece of jewelry from a special woman in your life or an accessory given to you by a close family member or friend, there’s always a way to fit it into your day. 

Some brides make sure their “something borrowed” is more than an afterthought by taking it with them as they look for a dress, ensuring it’ll match. If you don’t want to center your style around one piece of jewelry, you can always alter your look for the wedding reception and have it be a significant part of that moment. 

Related post: Something Borrowed & Something Blue: Meaning And Ideas

Mismatched Pieces Can Work

Too many styles to choose from? We’ve been there! Do some research, and you’ll find that some metals definitely work to complement each other, and it can be done in a classy way. While some metal colors fight each other, it’s easy to tell which works. You only need to trust your eyes. 

Getting out of your comfort zone may be challenging, especially knowing your wedding pictures are there forever. That being said, why not look back at those photos and think, “wow, I made a statement.” 

Change Your Look

Think of weddings as a two-part series. First, you have the ceremony, your all-eyes-on-me moment, and then you have the wedding reception. Apart from speeches, this is the time of your wedding when you can let loose and have fun. 

So, why not change your look? Many brides take a moment to swap out of their first dress and put on something more moveable for the reception. This will give you the perfect excuse to throw on new wedding jewelry. And if you don’t want a second dress, an accessory switch-up will be just as noticeable and fun! 

Match Your Necklace To Your Neckline

Here’s one of our more practical tips for choosing wedding jewelry. Always match your necklace to your neckline. Why is this important? 

Well, some believe the general rule of thumb is to pick one that follows the neckline of your dress. 

If you’re wearing a V-neck, accessorize with a pendant. For off-the-shoulder gowns, a choker or a statement piece works best for strapless dresses. If you’re not into those options, simply remember the necklace should sit on your skin, never the dress. 

Generational Trends Aren’t For Everyone

We know it’s hard to say no to mom and grandma, but sometimes they don’t know best. Your wedding is a celebration of you and your soon-to-be spouse. They’re hoping to recognize the person they marry while you walk down the aisle. That’s why it’s so important that you dress and style yourself according to your preferences and personal tastes. 

When it comes to your wedding jewelry, trust your instincts and go with the pieces that make you feel like you

Your Personal Style Is More Important Than Current Trends

We all jump on trends. No one’s hating. But remember that terrible feeling you get when you look at your old photos and ask yourself, “what was I thinking?” When reminiscing about your wedding album, let’s avoid that feeling at all costs. 

Stick with what you love! Trust your preferences and your style, and don’t go too crazy with current trends. Some statements are groundbreaking, and others make us cringe, so use caution when choosing your wedding jewelry based on what’s in right now. 

FAQs

  1. What jewelry is appropriate for a wedding? 

As a wedding guest, your accessories shouldn’t be overly flashy with the chance that you might upstage the bride. However, if you’re close with the bride or groom, consult with them if you want to wear a piece of jewelry you’re unsure of. 

  1. Should you wear silver or gold jewelry for your wedding? 

The metal you choose to wear for your wedding is entirely your preference. There are no right or wrong answers. But it might help to see if the metal you want suits your dress and then decide. 

  1. What kind of earrings should a bride wear? 

A bride can wear anything from classic pearl earrings to diamond or blue gemstone studs. In reality, it’s best to choose the style of earrings based on your hairstyle for the event and the dress style you’ve chosen.

Visit us At JamesAllen.com where you will find no shortage of personalized and trendy jewelry pieces for every budget and for every bride.

And don’t forget to 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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Happily Ever After Styles You’ll Love 

In celebration of Disney’s Disenchanted, now streaming on Disney+, we’re feeling very inspired to help you get that look that will make you feel like royalty.

Not everyone’s happily ever after looks the same, but if you picture yours with a fairytale wedding and the whole shebang, we foresee many potential occasions where you and your bride or groom-to-be may need some help dressing the part. 

So settle in and make some popcorn because we’re celebrating Disney’s Disenchanted, now streaming on Disney+, featuring a stunning pair of James Allen pearl earrings. Let us walk you through every step of your journey to looking just as gorgeous as the Disney princesses and princes you know and love.

The Proposal 

Everyone deserves their dream engagement ring. Make your proposal moment extra special by investing in a ring that truly reflects the love you have for your partner, and you’re sure to get extra points if it matches your unique style! 

So, how do you get the ring you know they’ll love? You could get their friends and family involved, use their current jewelry as a style guide, or design the ring together. Many couples opt for this more unconventional way, but it’s foolproof to get that perfect sparkler! 

Related Post: How To Buy An Engagement Ring: 10 Tips For Men & Women

Pre-Wedding Celebrations 

Pre-wedding celebrations span from your engagement party, bachelor/bachelorette bash to your rehearsal dinner and other exciting events in between. It’s the build up to your special day, and you deserve to look your best. 

Not everyone likes to be the center of attention, but you’re getting married! Let the people around you shower you with love, positive vibes, and maybe a cute accessory or two. Diamond jewelry for her, and plain metal jewelry for him, is the perfect way to dress up your celebratory looks. 

Say I Do In Style  

Choosing your wedding day jewelry can be nerve-racking, but knowing you can simply match your jewelry to your dress or suit should keep those pesky butterflies at bay. Bridal jewelry typically sways more towards timeless pearl pieces. Pearl jewelry is versatile in color and design and can prove to be inexpensive, particularly when bought from trusted online jewelry retailers. 

Get this stunning pair of James Allen pearl earrings featured in Disney’s Disenchanted, now streaming on Disney+.

Out Of Office 

It’s honeymoon time, and there’s an accessory for any adventure you’ve got planned. If you’re going on an outdoor trip, on-the-go jewelry is the best choice for you. Don’t let anyone tell you you can’t wear a tennis bracelet with your activewear! 

If your honeymoon plans look more like you on a beach day drinking and taking wow-worthy Insta pics, first, we’re jealous, and second, we recommend a layered and stacked jewelry look with simple fine jewelry pieces. 

And They All Lived…You know The Rest 

We hope you get your happy ever after with a jewelry box full of items to remind you of your special journey. At JamesAllen.com, we love that we’re a part of our customer’s unique moments, from helping couples choose their engagement rings to finding the best anniversary gifts as the years go by. 

If you’ve found your princess or prince charming and you’re ready to get down on one knee, visit us here, and we’ll make sure every occasion is a sparkling one.

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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Your Tennis Bracelet Buying Guide

Want to find out everything you need to know about tennis bracelets? Read on to learn all about these beauties that will remain eye-catching for years to come.

Tennis Bracelet Buying Guide 

Tennis bracelets have been a go-to staple for decades- and rightfully so! Diamond tennis bracelets are comfortable, sophisticated, and make the perfect accessory for virtually any occasion. But with so many varieties and price points, shopping for the right one can quickly get overwhelming. Our guide has everything you need to know about this iconic piece of jewelry and how to find the right one for you!

What Is A Tennis Bracelet?

Why are tennis bracelets called tennis bracelets? While the name ‘tennis bracelet’ can be traced back to the 1970s, and the style has been around since the 1920s, the term only gained popularity in the 1980s. The story goes that during the 1987 US Open, Tennis champion Chris Evert was playing on the court when her diamond bracelet broke and flew off her wrist. Since then, the name has stuck. 

Some say that the game actually took place in 1978. Some say that Evert’s bracelet never even broke. Whatever the story is, it resulted in a long trend of wearing sparkles on the court.

Today, tennis bracelets are worn both on and off the court- they can be seen on red carpets, magazine covers, and on everyday wrists for everyday wear!

How Much Do Tennis Bracelets Cost?

The price of a tennis bracelet is determined by several factors: the type of metal, the number of diamonds, the carats of the diamonds, and whether the diamonds are lab created or natural. 

The most popular metals are yellow gold, white gold, rose gold, and platinum. The rarer the metal is, the higher the price will be. For example, a platinum tennis bracelet can cost about $8,500, whereas the same bracelet in rose gold can cost around $7,500.

One of the most compelling advantages of lab-grown diamond tennis bracelets is that they’re entirely indistinguishable from a bracelet with natural diamonds! Opting for a tennis bracelet with lab-grown diamonds will be kinder on your wallet without any noticeable difference.

Given all these variables, a tennis bracelet can cost anywhere between $1,000 and $10,000!

As with any piece of jewelry, it all comes down to personal preference and what you feel comfortable spending!

Tennis Bracelet Styles And Settings

You can choose three different types of settings: prong, channel, and bezel. Each type holds the diamonds in place slightly differently.

Three different types of diamond tennis bracelets

Prong Setting

The prong setting consists of two, three, or four-prong baskets for each of the diamonds in a tennis bracelet. A four-prong setting is ideal, as it will keep your diamonds firmly in place without compromising on the bracelet’s elegance.

Typically, larger carat diamonds require at least for prongs, while smaller carat diamonds can be held by two or three prong settings.

Channel Setting

A channel setting is a popular tennis bracelet setting that features a seamless row of tension-set diamonds. Opting for a channel setting means that the diamonds on your bracelet are all the same size and lined up perfectly, creating a sleek and modern look.

Bezel/Half Bezel Setting

A bezel setting features circle mounts or small bars that hold the diamonds in place. Unlike other popular settings, a bezel-set tennis bracelet can hold various diamonds of different sizes and carats. All or only some parts of the diamonds are encircled with a metal strap, providing a robust and secure mount. 

On the other hand, the half-bezel setting holds the diamonds in place with half circles. This brings a truly unique and easily distinguishable look to your bracelet. 

If you lead an active lifestyle (maybe you play tennis!) a bezel or half-bezel setting would make a great option: you’ll always know your diamonds are safe and secure.

How To Determine The Sizing Of a Tennis Bracelet

  1. Wrap a measuring tape tightly around your wrist to determine your wrist size. Make sure you place the tape right below your wrist bone. 
  2. If you don’t have a measuring tape, simply get a strip of paper or ribbon, wrap that around your wrist, mark where one end of the paper meets the other, and then use a ruler to measure the strip. 
  3. If you are purchasing this bracelet as a surprise gift, keep in mind that tennis bracelets for women tend to be around 7-7.5 inches. You can use that as a guide.
  4. Remember, a comfort fit will typically be three quarters of an inch larger than your actual wrist measurement!

After following these steps you can get the perfect bracelet with the perfect fit!

How and When To Wear a Tennis Bracelet

Given that most people are right-handed, it’s very common for tennis bracelets to be worn on the left hand. Doing so will ensure that your dominant hand is free to do tasks without the bracelet getting in the way. You can even wear your tennis bracelet with your favorite watch or other pieces of jewelry. Make the look your own!

While many people opt to wear their tennis bracelets to important celebrations or events, it is totally safe to have your bracelet on all the time! As long as you take care of it, there is no issue taking your bracelet with you wherever you go!

Remember, there is no right or wrong way, place, or time to wear your bracelet! Do whatever makes you feel best!

How to Take Care of Your Tennis Bracelet

After continuous daily wear, it’s very common to find your tennis bracelet lacking in luster. But don’t worry, taking care of your tennis bracelet can be done in 6 simple steps. 

Step 1: Fill a small bowl with warm, soapy water. Feel free to use dish soap or a gentle degreasing solution. You’ll need just enough water to cover the bracelet completely. 

Step 2: Submerge your bracelet in the water and move it around gently with your finger. This will help loosen up some of the surface dirt that has accumulated on the diamonds. 

Step 3: Leave the bracelet in the cleaning solution for 10-15 minutes.

Step 4: Remove your tennis bracelet from the bowl, and with a toothbrush (or jewelry cleaning brush), gently brush the diamonds slowly.

Step 5: Once you’re satisfied with how clean your bracelet is, pat it dry with a microfibre cloth. 

Step 6: Before getting rid of the cleaning mixture, double-check that any diamonds didn’t come loose and fall inside the liquid. 

And that’s that! Your tennis bracelet will look good as new! You can repeat the process whenever your bracelet needs a little more shine. 

14K White Gold Four Prong Lab Created Diamond Tennis Bracelet

Affordable Alternatives to a Diamond Tennis Bracelet

Lab Created Diamond Tennis Bracelets

If you’re looking to purchase a diamond tennis bracelet but want a more sustainable and affordable option- look no further! Lab created diamond tennis bracelets are both eco-friendly and budget-friendly. Lab grown diamonds offer the same eye-catching sparkle at a lower cost. Today, endless tennis bracelets for women can be found with lab created diamonds!

Gemstone/Birthstone Tennis Bracelets

Despite popular belief, a tennis bracelet doesn’t need to feature only diamonds. If you’re looking for an affordable alternative to a diamond tennis bracelet, you can look for a gemstone or birthstone bracelet instead!

Opting for gemstones can bring a colorful and eye-catching element to your bracelet. With an array of semi-precious or precious gemstones to choose from, your bracelet can sparkle with emeralds, rubies, amethysts, and more!

And surprising a loved one with a birthstone tennis bracelet can add a personalized touch to your birthday gift. For example, any May baby would be absolutely delighted to don a bracelet covered in emeralds!

By choosing a tennis bracelet with gemstones or birthstones instead of diamonds, you can cut on cost without cutting on the glam!

Moissanite Tennis Bracelets

Moissanite is the second hardest stone and makes the perfect alternative to diamonds! From one to ten, diamonds are ranked at a 10, while moissanite is ranked at 9.25-9.5. Moissanite is a very durable option for your tennis bracelet as they don’t scratch easily but still shines just as bright!

While a trained eye will be able to tell the difference between a moissanite and a diamond, at first glance they are hard to tell apart. A moissanite tennis bracelet will help you get the look without breaking the bank.

When To Buy A Tennis Bracelet

Tennis bracelets make a great gift for any occasion! You can buy a tennis bracelet as a gift for a loved one (or even for yourself!) on any of these special days:

  • Wedding anniversary (i.e. 5th, 10th, 15th, 25th)
  • Wedding day gift (for spouse, mother, mother-in-law, grandmother)
  • Valentine’s Day
  • Birthday
  • Graduation (high school, college, graduate school, medical school)
  • Birth of a child
  • Job promotion
  • Achievement of an exciting milestone
  • Retirement
  • Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa or other holidays

FAQs

How Many Carats is a Tennis Bracelet?

Typically, a diamond tennis bracelet will be between 3 and 4 carats. Keep in mind that the number of carats will vary between different styles and types of bracelets. Some bracelets can reach a total weight of 10 carats or more- it all depends on the individual piece of jewelry. 

How Loose Should a Tennis Bracelet Be?

Typically, a tennis bracelet should be loose enough that it isn’t causing discomfort or irritation for your wrist, but tight enough that it doesn’t easily slip off or get caught on your clothing.

Which Wrist Should You Wear a Tennis Bracelet On?

Since most people are right-handed, it’s common for tennis bracelets to be worn on the left hand. Feel free to wear it on your non-dominant hand or not! You can switch it up, or keep it traditional, whatever feels most comfortable. 

Can You Wear a Tennis Bracelet Every Day?

Yes! A tennis bracelet can liven up any outfit, no matter the occasion- even a trip to the grocery store. As long as you take care of your bracelet, there is no harm in wearing it every day of the week. 

Can You Shower With a Tennis Bracelet?

Showering with your tennis bracelet can result in residual soaps and products dimming the shine of your diamonds. It is best to get into the habit of removing your bracelet before stepping into the shower. That way, it’ll stay shining for longer!

14K White Gold Bezel Lab Created Diamond Tennis Bracelet

Parting Thoughts

Whether you’re buying a diamond tennis bracelet for yourself or someone else, there are plenty of options out there to make this gift a special one! 

If you have any questions or concerns surrounding your future tennis bracelet, visit our website www.jamesallen.com or get in contact with one of our 24/7 customer service agents who are always ready to help.

Subscribe to our email list to keep up to date with all tips, guides, and upcoming sales!

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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Minimalist Jewelry: A Beginner’s Guide

Discover the jewelry minimalists are going crazy for to wear alone, stacked, or layered with other fine jewelry pieces that will remain trendy now and for years to come.

Minimalist Jewelry

Whether you like plain and simple jewelry designs or you’re wanting to add a more minimalist edge to your style, we’re here to help you on your minimalist style journey.

Minimalist jewelry is and always will be a fashionable option for just about any event or occasion. We’ve looked at common mistakes made when trying to pull off this look and how we can make it easier for you to rock minimalist jewelry and still look effortlessly stunning. 

Here are our top tips to look out for when purchasing, pairing, and wearing minimalist jewelry like a pro.

What Is Minimalist Jewelry?

Essentially, minimalist jewelry is accessories with simple and unfussy designs that work subtly into your look. Simple fashion is the name of the game for people looking to buy and wear minimalist jewelry, but that’s not to say your overall aesthetic won’t make a statement. 

Often subtle jewelry can tie a great outfit together and give it the touch of sparkle it’s missing. Or it can add a hint of your personality to whatever you wear night or day! 

Can I Wear Multiple Pieces of Minimalist Jewelry?

Minimalist jewelry doesn’t necessarily mean you only need one piece of jewelry. Definitely play around with different pieces that you can stack, layer, or wear on different parts of your body. 

Whether you like layering or stacking your jewelry, you can style your go-to minimalist designs in a way that doesn’t give off a cluttered look. 

However, don’t feel as though you need to wear multiple pieces of minimalist jewelry. A simple necklace, bracelet, and ring design can look incredible without the need to add more.

Does The Minimalist Jewelry Need To Be The Same Metal?

Playing around with different metal colors is your prerogative, and no one should say otherwise. 

You can mix and match your minimalist jewelry to your heart’s content, but do keep in mind that when you pair the pieces of the same metal color, it really does make a statement. What you want to avoid is over cluttering your look with too many different colors. So we suggest you stick with two metal colors max. 

Most people with warmer skin tones can pull off a darker metal combination of yellow and rose gold. Whereas those with cooler skin tones look great in white metals like silver, white gold, and platinum. The key is to play around and see which metals look best on you. This can also vary for your day or night looks. 

Related Post: How To Choose The Right Jewelry For Your Skin Tone

Minimalist Jewelry: The Classics

When it comes to minimalist jewelry, invest in the essentials. Add a few classic pieces to your jewelry box for a chic minimalist style that works every time. Timeless jewelry pieces will always pass the latest trends. Whether it’s a pair of gold hoops or a cuff bracelet, you can wear these items to give your everyday look a contemporary spin. 

Classic or vintage jewelry can be bought for absolutely any occasion and will stand the test of time. They also make for the best gifts and are perfect for both casual and formal environments.

Minimalist Jewelry To Make A Bold Statement

The key to a minimalist style is an outfit that has one showstopping jewelry piece. Whether it be a sleek pair of thick huggie hoops or a chunky signet ring, a single jewel can keep you looking fashion-forward. Nothing screams minimalist chic more than one impactful piece of jewelry to keep all eyes on you.   

To get that big and bold look with one piece of jewelry, you’d do best by investing in some solid gold pieces. Modern minimalist jewelry trends all point to yellow gold jewelry, a warm and versatile metal that looks good on any skin tone. 

Minimalist Jewelry: Simple, Yet Sparkling

Just because you’re going with minimalist jewelry doesn’t mean you need to lose your shine. Diamond jewelry is still the perfect choice for a polished and sparkling aesthetic, like diamond pendants or diamond tennis bracelets. Our only advice here will be to stick to one kind of metal if you wear more than one piece of diamond jewelry. 

If you’re looking for just a hint of sparkle, a modest bezel set or dome ring could be the perfect asset to your minimalist collection. 

Keep Your Jewelry Box Light

Minimalist jewelry can serve you time and time again. Stick to a few flexible pieces that you might wear for both informal and formal occasions with any type of outfit. Here, we suggest starting with precious metals. These metals often appear as clean, sleek lines with smooth satin surfaces.

This type of jewelry is a staple of simple elegance and is easy to throw on at a minute’s notice. Take a pair of simple stackable rings or a medallion necklace, for example; put them on, and you’ve gone from casual to polished in an instant. Plus, it’s a long-term investment in quality and style you’ll get to cherish and wear any time you want.

Related post: Minimalist Jewelry: Back To Basics

Spice Up Your Minimalist Jewelry With Gemstones

A pop of color may be just what the fashionistas ordered. If your outfit of choice happens to be a simple white, beige or black ensemble, gemstone jewelry will serve as your ideal accessory. 

What we love about gemstones is their ability to look fabulous in whichever fine jewelry piece you prefer. Their color will give you the extra finesse your outfit needs to make a statement; from gemstone rings to a chic gemstone necklace or bracelet, your options are endless. 

As a minimalist rule, it’s less complicated to stick to your favorite type of gemstone and avoid unnecessary mixing and matching.

Avoid Complicated Designs

Minimalist jewelry can be fun and explorative, from asymmetric lines for abstract simplicity or perfectly symmetrical pieces that give you a sleek look. Try to avoid designs that are too intricate and move towards more opulent jewelry with clean cuts and smooth surfaces.

You don’t want to take away from the curated minimalism that comes with uncomplicated jewelry designs.

Buying A Piece of Minimalist Jewelry For Someone Special

If you’re thinking about getting a piece of jewelry for someone special, but you want it to be affordable and not over the top, minimalist jewelry is the way to go! 

We all like adding accessories to our jewelry boxes that we know we can wear every day no matter the occasion, so trust us when we say your gift will be appreciated and worn often!
Go for a simple stackable birthstone ring, a plain medallion necklace, a simple pair of hoop earrings, or a cuff bracelet to let them know you care and that you have great taste in jewelry.

Closing Thoughts

We at JamesAllen.com hope you enjoyed this article as much as we loved writing it. Our archives are brimming with fun and helpful tips about fine jewelry. Learn how to match your personality and style with the jewelry of your dreams. You can find our selection of reads below. 

If you have any questions about our products or you’d like to design your own earrings or pendants, visit our website here or get in contact with one of our 24/7 customer service agents here.

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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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 5,000 degrees F. When left to cool, this mineral mixture forms crystals, which can then be cut and polished into jewelry-grade stones.

Moissanite

What is moissanite?

Moissanite is a form of silicon carbide crystal that’s synthesized in a lab. The result is a clear stone that, on the surface, bears a striking resemblance to real diamonds

How is moissanite made?

Moissanite occurs naturally, but it’s incredibly rare. Thus, all the affordable moissanite on the market today is created in a lab. 

How to distinguish between a real diamond and a simulant diamond:

Durability

The standard measurement to determine a stone’s strength is the Mohs scale of mineral hardness. It describes a mineral’s resistance to being scratched and is measured from 0 (maximum softness) to 10 (maximum hardness).

Lab created diamonds and earth created diamonds:

Diamonds are the toughest stones out there. They score a maximum of 10 on the Mohs scale, meaning they can withstand absolutely anything you throw at them in your daily life. This durability is one of the reasons diamonds are the go-to stone for engagement rings, which are worn daily for decades at a time.

Because diamonds’ structure never changes, they can be passed on as family heirlooms. Both lab grown diamonds and earth created diamonds will last for, well, forever. 

Moissanite

While moissanite isn’t the hardest mineral out there, it’s close. It scores a 9.25 on the Mohs scale. It’s more susceptible to scratching than diamonds are, but it still holds up extremely well to daily wear-and-tear.

Cubic zirconia

Cubic zirconia is moderately hard. At an 8 on the Mohs scale, its resilience is comparable to that of other jewelry stones like emerald, beryl, and amethyst. Because it’s scratch-resistant, but not scratch-proof, cubic zirconia (particularly much-worn stones like those in engagement rings) often acquires many tiny scratches that cloud its appearance. When this occurs, a professional jeweler can recut the stone to restore its clarity.

Lifespan

Lab created diamonds and earth created diamonds

How long do diamonds last? Well, you’ll never have to throw one out due to deterioration. As the famous De Beer’s slogan correctly claims, “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 diamond you buy, whether earth mined or lab created, can be comfortably passed down through the generations. 

Moissanite

Though not as long-lasting as diamonds, moissanite will comfortably last for decades without any significant degradation in quality. However, since it’s a relatively newly recognized mineral, its exact lifespan is unknown.

Although discovered over a century ago, jewelry-grade moissanite crystals only began to be synthesized in the 1970’s and only became widely available in the 1980’s. Meaning, many couples getting engaged today with moissanite engagement rings were born before moissanite engagement rings became a thing. 

Cubic Zirconia

Cubic zirconia is made for short-term wear. With daily wear, you can expect them to last less than 5 years. This means cubic zirconia is a great “for the time being” stone; you can wear it as a placeholder until you replace it with your dream diamond.

Be advised that contact with common chemicals will cause cubic zirconia to lose its shine, making it wearable for shorter periods of time. So make sure to remove cubic zirconia jewelry before doing daily tasks like putting on lotion, using cleaning supplies, or using hairspray.

Color

Lab created diamonds and earth created diamonds

Colorless isn’t the only option! Due to trace elements in their composition, diamonds can display a range of colors. Plus, diamonds’ color is permanent. It won’t change at high temperatures or fade over time. 

Moissanite

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

Cubic zirconia

Cubic zirconia doesn’t change color when exposed to heat, but under UV radiation it can turn color, albeit temporarily. Most commonly, it turns yellowish, light green, or white. Indoors your stone will remain clear, but if you go outside on a sunny day it may change hue.

Sparkle

A diamond’s sparkle is largely thanks to two qualities: brilliance and fire.

“Brilliance” is a specific term describing a gemstone’s ability to return white light. It’s measured by the refractive index; a higher refractive index indicates a greater amount of white light reflected. The more white light reflected, the brighter the gemstone appears to the human eye.

“Fire” refers to a gemstone’s ability to return colored light, and is measured by the dispersion score. The higher a gemstone’s dispersion, the more it will display a rainbow of colors.

Lab created diamonds and earth created diamonds 

Diamonds have a refractive index of 2.42 and their faceting pattern returns light remarkably. They’re strikingly bright, but not too much so. Its dispersion is relatively low, at 0.044, so diamonds remain quite bright, with only minimal colorful sparkle. The combination of this brilliance (reflected white light) and fire (refracted color) give diamonds a truly balanced and unparalleled sparkle.

Moissanite

Moissanite actually has a higher refractive index than diamonds, at 2.65, and thus appears incredibly bright under natural light. However, moissanite has crazy high dispersion: 0.104. This is why it reflects back a ton of colored light, leading to a “rainbow effect” that tends to overshadow its brilliance.

The rainbow effect tends to make moissanite look fake to the well-trained eye, and is especially noticeable under natural light and in larger stones. In short, moissanite can often appear “too sparkly” under certain lights.

Cubic zirconia

With a refractive index of 2.15, cubic zirconia is the least brilliant of the bunch. Its lower score means that it reflects less light back to the eye, appearing duller than both diamond and moissanite under identical light.

It has a slightly higher dispersion than diamond, around 0.058, but isn’t very noticeable. Under natural light, it will appear quite white, but it will definitely lack the sparkle of either diamond or moissanite.

Ideal Size

Lab created diamonds and earth created diamonds

Diamonds come in every carat. At James Allen, we sell loose diamonds in a huge range of carat sizes: from petite diamonds in 0.20 carats, all the way to large diamonds that are upwards of a whopping 20 carats. Diamonds’ stunning bright white brilliance and minimal color dispersal look amazing in any carat weight.

Moissanite:

Moissanite’s intense rainbow effect increases as the stone get larger. For this reason, it’s best to avoid large moissanite stones in jewelry. Stick with the smaller sizes; under 1 carat is best. Think: diamond for center stones, and moissanite for accent stones.

Cubic zirconia:

Cubic zirconia comes in as wide a range of carat sizes as diamonds do. While you can find cubic zirconia in as large a carat as you’d like, it’s best to choose an average-sized carat (around 1 carat) both to maximize the amount of light that hits the stone and to avoid the relatively dull shine that becomes obvious in larger stones.

Cost

Earth created diamonds

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.

Lab created diamonds

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 do, lab made diamonds cost significantly less than earth mined diamonds.

Moissanite

This is quite affordable compared to diamond, but it’s the more expensive of the diamond simulants. Moissanite costs about half of what a traditional diamond under 1-carat costs. As a traditional diamond increase in carat weight, comparable moissanites become relatively more affordable. 

Cubic zirconia

Cubic zirconia is the most budget-friendly choice. It costs next to nothing compared to a traditional diamond. While a colorless, eye-clean 1-carat diamond could cost thousands of dollars, comparable cubic zirconia will cost only a few dozen dollars.

The Low-Down

Choose a classic earth created diamond if:

  1. You love diamond’s sparkle
  2. You’ll wear your diamond jewelry often
  3. You admire the billions of years of history contained in each stone

Choose a modern lab created diamond if:

  1. You love diamond’s sparkle
  2. You’ll wear your diamond jewelry often
  3. You want a large diamond at a lower price

Choose moissanite if:

  1. You’re on a budget
  2. You like small-carat stones
  3. You’ll wear your jewelry intensively

Choose cubic zirconia if:

  1. You’re on a budget
  2. You’ll wear your jewelry carefully and not every day
  3. You’re saving up for a more expensive stone

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.

Keep up on your diamond reading:

  1. Diamonds: The April Birthstone
  2. How To Take Care Of Your Diamond Jewelry
  3. Earth-Created Vs. Lab-Created Diamonds
  4. True Hearts™ Lab Created Diamonds
  5. Lab-Created Diamonds vs. Moissanite

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

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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Your GIA Certification, Explained

A GIA certification is an official document detailing the nitty-gritty of your unique diamond. Why’s it important? Read on to find out.

GIA Certification

First of all, what’s a GIA certification?

A GIA certification (so named because it’s issued by the Gemological Institute of America) is a type of diamond certification: a document that describes in detail all the unique characteristics of your diamond. An official GIA inspector analyzes your diamond thoroughly and records its physical attributes in the certificate. The 4 C’s (Cut, Color, Clarity, and Carat Weight) are covered exhaustively. No two diamonds will have identical GIA certificates.

In short, you can think of a GIA certification as your diamond’s “birth certificate.” 

Martini Diamond Stud Earrings

14K Yellow Gold Three Prong Martini Round Brilliant Diamond Stud Earrings (1.00 CTW - H-I / SI1-SI2)

“What I’m most pleased with is how sparkly the diamonds are. I’m so glad I chose the 3 prong martini style, they don’t stick out or droop. They fit as flush to the ear as possible if that’s the look you’d prefer.” -Joyce J.

Four-Prong Diamond Stud Earrings

14K White Gold Four Prong Round Brilliant Lab Created Diamond Stud Earrings (1.50 CTW - F-G / VS2-SI1)

“I absolutely love my new earring studs! I was able to style them exactly how I wanted using the stones and metal I wanted. Couldn’t ask for a better experience.” -Matt T.

Is a GIA certification important? 

Well, yes and no. 

Yes: The GIA certification allows gemologists to identify, price, and appraise your diamond. By documenting its one-of-a-kind characteristics, a diamond certificate ensures that your stone is unmistakable.

No: You wear a diamond for the sparkle, not the certification. The GIA certification often comes in handy at the beginning of your diamond’s life – as you buy, appraise, and insure your diamond – then usually spends the rest of its days in a file cabinet.

To really understand the aspects of your diamond described in the GIA certification, you have to see them with your own eyes. With James Allen’s Diamond Display technology, you can view your diamond in 360° HD and up to 40x magnification. Then you’ll truly understand your diamond’s features.

Four-Prong Basket Solitaire Diamond Pendant

14K Yellow Gold Four Prong Basket Solitaire Diamond Pendant (Mounting)

“More incredible than I could have hoped! I have to say, I am so impressed! This design is just perfect and really lets the diamond “shine,” literally and figuratively.” – Maggie L.

Mounted Pear Shape Diamond Solitaire Pendant

14K White Gold Pear Shape Diamond Solitaire Pendant (Mounting)

“The stone is so beautiful and sparkly. I love how it is set so it shows off the shape of the pear. The workmanship is great and it was shipped quickly. I am so happy with my Diamond pendant” -Lenora L.

Your GIA Certification

The good news is that every James Allen diamond comes with an official certification. We provide reports from the industry’s leading labs including the Gemological Institute of America (GIA). Your diamond may come with a diamond certification from the GIA, the American Gem Society (AGS), or the International Gemological Institute (IGI). These labs adhere to the highest grading standards, and only issue diamond certifications certified by professional gemologists.

To get your diamond’s certificate, simply ask our customer service team! Your grading report is complementary with your diamond.

Beaded Engagement Ring

14K White Gold Bead Accent Pavé Trio Diamond Engagement Ring

“I am very happy with this ring setting. It feels very dainty and sort of vintage. I love the small details of this setting that make this ring feel unique, like the milgrain beading around the center stone.” -Noel B.

Pavé Halo Engagement Ring

14K White Gold Pavé Halo And Shank Diamond Engagement Ring (Pear Center)

“I got my ring several months ago and I still get excited every day when I see it. The ring is gorgeous and sparkly and exactly how I hoped it would look when I bought my stone!” Katrina H.

Earth Created Vs. Lab Created Diamonds?

Lab created diamonds and earth-created diamonds both come with diamond certifications. That’s because lab created diamonds and earth created diamonds are, well, diamonds. And since both grow organically (one underground, one in a lab) they both form their own unique, gradable characteristics. In fact, even professional gemologists can’t reliably tell the difference between earth-created and lab-created diamonds.

Four Prong Tennis Bracelet

14K White Gold Four Prong Lab Created Diamond Tennis Bracelet (2.00 CTW - F-G / VS2-SI1)

“I bought this bracelet as a present to myself. I extensively researched the difference between lab grown and earth diamonds and since there is no physical difference and I wanted the bigger diamonds I chose lab grown.” -Katrina D.

Bezel-Set Tennis Bracelet

14K Rose Gold Bezel Diamond Tennis Bracelet (3 CTW - H-I / SI1-SI2)

“I have always been in search of a nice diamond bezel bracelet: something that sparkles and doesn’t get caught in your clothes. This bracelet just exceeds my expectations! The diamonds sparkle, the bracelet is smooth, and overall the design is very nice! I NEVER take it off!” – Beth L.

Still Have Questions?

At James Allen.com, our customer service agents are available to you 24/7. Feel free to contact us, and one of our non-commissioned diamond and jewelry experts will help you find the diamond of your dreams. 

Still diamond curious? Read on!

  1. Diamonds: The April Birthstone
  2. How To Take Care Of Your Diamond Jewelry
  3. Earth-Created Vs. Lab-Created Diamonds
  4. Why Carat Weight Doesn’t Really Matter

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

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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The Most Memorable Graduation Gifts

With in-person graduation ceremonies canceled, an exceptional graduation gift can save your grad’s special day. Believe us, they’ll look gooooood over Zoom!

The Most Memorable Graduation Gifts

So, what are the most popular graduation gifts? Most seem to consist of classic daily wear staples like diamond earrings, Tennis bracelets, and rings. You know, pieces that graduates can wear on special occasions for the rest of their lives, starting with that first post-college interview for their dream job.

Graduation Gifts: EARRINGS

Diamond earrings are THE most popular graduation gifts. These petite sparklers pack a punch in a versatile package. They’re perfect for work, for casual weekends, and for happy hours with new friends in new cities.

Milgrain Bezel Diamond Stud Earrings

14K White Gold Milgrain Bezel Diamond Stud Earrings (Mounting)

“Bought these for our daughter, who’s graduating college. They’re beautiful – they catch the light and sparkle! Our daughter loves them.”
-Sandra C.

Bezel Diamond Stud Earrings

14K White Gold Pair Of Bezel Diamond Stud Earrings

“I ordered beautiful diamond solitaire earrings for my daughter’s graduation and they were more lovely than I expected. Bravo!”
-Shannon D.

Pavé Open Circle Diamond Earrings

14K Yellow Gold Petite Pave Open Circle Diamond Earrings

“The diamond quality and setting are absolutely gorgeous!! I’m so glad I ordered these for my daughter who is graduating next week!”
-Nora M.


GRADUATION GIFT-GIVING TIPS!

  • Choose a piece that complements your graduate’s style or fills in a gap in their jewelry collection.
  • Collaborate with family & friends. If aunt Judy is set on gifting earrings, move your focus over to bracelets or rings.

Graduation Gifts: BRACELETS

Bracelets are incredibly meaningful graduation gifts that give off a different class of shine. Not only are diamond bracelets classy, but they’re also simply the epitome of professionalism. When your graduate slips on one of these bracelets, they’ll feel ready to take on the world.

Two-Prong Diamond Tennis Bracelet

14K White Gold Two Prong Diamond Tennis Bracelet

“This bracelet was my high school graduation gift, and I couldn’t be happier! It is impossibly elegant yet also simple enough to wear with sweats.”
-Claire S.

Boho Diamond Bracelet

14K White Gold Bolo Diamond Bracelet

“My husband and I bought this for our daughter who graduated from law school. She was so surprised, happy, and very grateful. My daughter loved the bracelet and of course, we knew we had made the right choice.”
-Laura P.


MORE GRADUATION GIFT-GIVING TIPS!

  • Give graduation gifts before the ceremony. That way, your scholar can look stunning walking across the stage (or appearing on Zoom) to receive that diploma.
  • Ask the scholar! Is there a piece of jewelry they’ve had their eye on? Find their dream jewelry design together.

Graduation Gifts: RINGS

What? A diamond ring – for graduation? Though it may seem far-fetched, “engagement rings” are super popular graduation gifts. Why? One reason may be that they can be engraved for free. A memorable inscription will always remind your new grad of their academic achievement! That’s why diamond rings are the go-to choice for those searching for meaningful jewelry graduation gifts.

Knife-Edge Solitaire Diamond Ring

14K Rose Gold 2.5mm Knife Edge Solitaire Engagement Ring

I bought this as a gift for myself after graduation. The stone, the quality, and the setting are amazing.”
-Yashaswini Y.

Vintage Infinity Diamond Ring

14K White Gold Vintage Infinity Engagement Ring

“I ordered this ring for my daughter’s college graduation, and she was wearing the ring when she walked on graduation day…amazing!”
-Timothy F.

Five-Stone Diamond Ring

14K Yellow Gold Five Stone Diamond Wedding Ring

My parents gave me this five-stone ring when I graduated college. I wear it on my right hand and the diamonds are amazing.”
-Nguyen L

More bright gifts for the brightest graduates:

  1. How to Choose A Foolproof Gift
  2. Holiday Jewelry Gift Trends
  3. Jewelry Gifts Under $1000
  4. Your Guide To Diamond Bracelets

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

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.

More Posts