What if I don’t want a diamond engagement ring?

There is a growing trend with alternative engagement rings and there are so many gorgeous options to choose from. However, if you’re thinking about something other than the traditional diamond for your engagement ring, there are few important things you should consider…

Tradition isn’t the only reason diamonds are the most popular choice for an engagement ring, it’s also because they’re the strongest. In actual fact, there aren’t too many gemstones that will hold up to everyday wear.

The Mohs scale of hardness is one of the ways that different minerals’ properties are measured. It’s a great quick reference guide for how likely a gemstone is to survive everyday wear. Diamonds are the hardest material known to man with a rating of 10 on the Mohs Hardness scale. A masonry drill bit, by comparison is 8.5.

You would be forgiven for wanting to choose an alternative engagement gemstone based on what calls to you, rather than what is practical, but if you do, you could be setting yourself up for heartbreak. The more fragile and delicate the stone, the more likely that it will chip, break, or fall out and need to be replaced.

There are a few stones that genuinely work well in rings and there are others that would be an okay bet if you’re prepared to really look after your ring and not wear it every day. There are some – like pearls and opals – that are high-risk engagement stones. As in, you shouldn’t pick one of those unless you’re prepared to replace the stone in your engagement ring periodically.

Rubies and sapphires are perfect alternatives, great for everyday wear as they are both just one step below diamonds on the Mohs scale of hardness – similar to emery sandpaper. And, the best thing about sapphires is that they come in so many colours! However, choosing an emerald would be a high-risk choice. They’re around a 7.5 on the Mohs scale, but because of the nature of the stone, emeralds are prone to cracking and chipping. If you choose an emerald engagement ring you need to be aware that there’s a reasonable chance you’ll need to replace a stone someday.

There are things you can do to mitigate the risk, such as always taking off your ring when you’re working with your hands. You can also choose a low profile setting which means that the gemstones are nearly flush with the band and lay close to the finger. Low profile rings are less likely to get caught on things which means less lifetime stress on the setting, adding to the durability of the overall ring.

When choosing an engagement ring, make sure to choose something that you love which is also practical to your lifestyle. Call in and see us today – our team would love to help you make the perfect choice.