Sometimes love is all it takes to make a successful marriage, and the sheer determination of a couple to make things work can be enough. And if your love if plenty but the budget is not very high, the engagement ring becomes a bit of a problem. Perhaps you’re shopping on a budget. Or perhaps you feel that pricey engagement rings are overrated, and any ring would suffice.
Can any ring be an engagement ring ? We incline to think yes, and today we’ll discuss just how and why the intent behind the ring you propose with matters so much more than the net worth of the ring itself. Along with this, we’ll offer a few affordable alternatives for engagement rings, so that the symbol of your engagement can be palpable but not burn a hole in your pocket.
Can any ring be an engagement ring ?
Any ring can be an engagement ring, as long as the intention behind the ring is that your and your loved one would soon be married. An engagement ring is there as a palpable symbol of your intent to marry, there as a reminder for you both and as a warning for potential suitors.
It’s true that engagement rings are expected to feature a diamond or a similar center stone, and a ring that does not look like that may be mistaken for a regular ring. However this is a confusion that is easy to clear up by simply talking, in the case of friends, family, or other people who may be interested in you or your loved one.
That being said, an engagement ring does not have to be expensive, feature a diamond, or be overly flashy. It can be that, but there is no real practical reason aside from your own preference.
What makes a ring an engagement ring ?
A ring becomes an engagement ring when both you and your fiancee decide that this is the symbol of your promise to be married in the foreseeable future. In ancient times engagement rings were any sort of valuable ring, as the intent behind the ring was the whole point of the proposal. It still is today, but we’re somehow fixated on diamonds without a real reason.
Even more heartwarming, think of the Irish claddagh rings. These rings are two clasped hands, with a heart in the middle and a crown on top of the heart. They stand for love, friendship, and loyalty, and have been used extensively as engagement rings. They may also be given as tokens of affection between parents and children, friends, or family, but most commonly it is a sign that this person is betrothed.
There are normally no gems on a claddagh ring, but the intent is very, very clear. And we think this is a perfect example of the fact that any ring can double as an engagement ring, as long as you both agree that this is what it symbolizes.
Do you still wear your engagement ring after getting married ?
Yes, you can still wear your engagement ring after getting married. If the ring fits well and does not get in the way of daily life, there is no reason to take it off. Many people opt to pair their engagement ring with the wedding band on the same finger, going so far as to coordinate the two rings so they match.
I still wear my engagement ring after our wedding, and it’s on the same finger as my wedding ring. It’s a simple solitaire CZ ring, and the wedding band has a pattern of diamond cuts that make it seem like an eternity band, but it is not. It’s simply 14k white gold with a rhodium plating, and it seems to sparkle any way I turn it. It’s a combination I love very much and it was a very affordable pair of rings.
Do men wear engagement rings ?
Men do not traditionally wear rings, but this custom is slowly fading. More and more men opt for an engagement ring for themselves as well, as an engagement implies that both parties are to be wed. An engagement ring would be just as special to men and it would to women.
As such, there are no real guidelines to what a man would typically wear as an engagement ring. We think each person has their own unique style and would choose an engagement ring based on their own style, so it’s best if you show for these rings together, if you are both going to wear one.
Affordable engagement ring examples
So we come to the question of just what ring to get as an engagement ring ? Any ring ! As long as you intend to propose, it can be any ring. OF course, the general expectation is that the ring should look a bit elegant or expensive, so let’s take a look at rings that appear this way but are quite affordable.
We’ve split this list into diamond simulants, colored gems, and no-stone rings so you have a quite a few options to choose form. Remember, it’s the intent that matters more than the worth of the ring. So be sure that the ring is truly beautiful to you and means something, before you decide on one.
Cubic zirconia or moissanite engagement rings
Both cubic zirconia and moissanite are diamond simulants, meaning they offer brilliance and fire for the fraction of the price of a real or lab-grown diamond. The great thing about these simulants is that you can easily find them in whatever shade you want, so getting a very particular engagement ring is not going to be difficult. Here are a few examples.
Here’s an example of a very sparkly and beautiful engagement ring set off Amazon.
It features a cubic zirconia center stone, with tiny CZ studded around the top half of the ring. You can get it in 1ct or .5 ct center stone, and the overall effect is impressive. This engagement ring also comes with an eternity ring that can double as a wedding ring, or simply a booster for the engagement ring itself. The metal of the rings is sterling silver, and it is plated in either platinum, rose gold, or yellow gold upon your preference.
Or if you’d rather go for something simpler, with fire and brilliance more similar to a real diamond, try this moissanite solitaire off Amazon.
It’s got a simple design, with a single stone. It’s a 1 ct ring, and the moissanite has a round brilliant cut. The metal itself is sterling silver and does not contain any nickel. This is a really great ring if you have a minimalistic style or want a basic engagement ring that can go with any sort of wedding band.
Colored gemstone engagement rings
Colored gemstones are fun and there’s no real reason not to have them for an engagement ring. Better yet, they’re often more affordable than a diamond. And the ones that are expensive – such as rubies, sapphires, and emeralds – often are far more affordable when lab-grown. So don’t be shy, take a look at these fun, colorful engagement ring ideas !
Take a look at this colorful and impressive engagement ring off Amazon !
It has a rainbow topaz as its center stone, and several marquise created purple sapphires. It also has a nice amount of small CZ stones to add more sparkle to an already impressive ring. The metal is 925 sterling silver.
Or how about a sapphire or ruby ring ? Take a look at this one off Amazon.
This impressive ring echoes Princess Diana’s sapphire engagement ring, only it comes at a much more affordable price. The center stone is lab-grown ruby (can be a sapphire, if you prefer), surrounded by a halo of white CZ. The ring is set in platinum-plated sterling silver.
Looking for a simpler ring that still has a bit of color to it ? Try this one from Amazon.
It’s a simple, elegant look. The center stone is an octagon cut, prong-set, and it’s flanked by three white CZ on either size. The center stone can be any colored gem, as you have a multitude of options to choose from. Some of the gems are genuine – like garnets and amethysts – and some are created, like the on in the photo (a lab-grown green emerald). So no matter what your color or gem preference is, you’re bound to find the one you’re looking for. The entire ring is set in sterling silver that has a white gold plating.
No-gem engagement rings are also an option
There is always the option of simply not including a gemstone in your engagement ring. It could be a plain band, an intricate one, maybe an engraved one, or one that has a very special meaning to your both. Themed rings are a popular choice for no-gem engagement rings, and if you two share a common love (nature, rock-climbing, cooking, music, anything) such a ring would have an extra special meaning.
Here’s a beautiful example of a simple ring off Amazon.
There is n center stone, but instead there is a beautiful rose shape with two leaves. The entire ring is made out of metal, so the rose itself is very sturdy. The metal is 925 sterling silver. Proposing with this ring just seems sweeter than anything else, and we’re very much in love with the engraving on the inside !
How about a claddagh ring ?
If you’re of Irish descent, or simply love the idea of claddagh rings, why not propose with one ? After all, these rings are the very epitome of love and loyalty – perfect for engagement ring that means a lot to you both.
I’m the main author for shinyfacts.com. I started this site after we did tons of research before our wedding and noticed that there is information about rings, jewelry, and so on that is really hard to find on the internet.