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How To Buy An Affordable Engagement Ring

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The time has come.

You and your significant other are ready to take the biggest step in your relationship yet; engagement.

You dream of the beautiful ring that will adorn your left hand. You can’t help but search Pinterest for hours for pictures of the perfect engagement ring to send your fiancé-to-be.

But hold up. Although hunting for the perfect engagement ring is fun and exciting, it can also be stressful. There is so much to take into account when looking for the perfect ring. Between the price, the thousands of options, and the quality for the price you pay, it can become a little overwhelming. And not to mention the pressure put on you by the salesperson at the jewelers.

Finding an affordable engagement ring can seem like a daunting task, but with these tips, you’ll find an affordable engagement ring that meets all your dreams AND fits in your price range in no time!

How To Find An Affordable Engagement Ring – My #1 Recommendation

When my husband and I were searching for the perfect affordable engagement ring back in 2015, we honestly had the best experience thanks to James Allen. James Allen made our experience a happy one, with NO pressure, and provided many helpful tools online to find our perfect AND affordable engagement ring.

First, we were able to pick the ring setting that I wanted, and stay within our price range.

Some options were out of our price range. However, there were many affordable options as well that were just as beautiful. I was able to find my dream engagement ring setting at an affordable price AND it was high quality.

Next, we were able to specifically pick out the exact center stone that would go in my engagement ring setting. THIS WAS HUGE for me, because when looking at other jewelers, the center diamonds were not very good quality. And I can’t tell you how many people notice how incredibly sparkly and clear the center stone in my engagement ring is because we chose such a high quality diamond. And the best part? It was still affordable!

My now husband was 22 and in college when we got engaged. So trust me when I say, we wanted quality but affordability was hugely important to us!

How To Find An Affordable Engagement Ring – What To Know When Choosing The 4 C’s

The best part about choosing the quality of your diamond with James Allen is being able to choose which of the 4 C’s are most important to you. The 4 C’s are clarity, cut, color, and carat.

Clarity is important because with too many inclusions or blemishes, your ring can look cloudy and won’t have that beautiful sparkle that we crave in a diamond.

Cut is important because the better the cut is, the more it will shine and sparkle.

Color is important because the higher on the scale (from a-z) the more yellow it will look, but the lower on the scale, the more it will have that beautiful colorless glow to it.

Lastly, carat is important because the bigger the size of the stone, the more expensive it will be. A 1 carat diamond can even be $1,000 more than a .9 carat diamond, which looks essentially the same in size.

What sold me on James Allen was being able to choose with of these 4 C’s was most important to me, based on price range, and being able to choose the EXACT diamond I wanted.

Here’s how:

how to find an affordable engagement ring

First, you are able to set the scales shown above to reflect which of the 4 C’s you want your ring to have.

For example, I chose to have a higher quality clarity and cut, and lesser quality color (mine is a J) and a smaller carat (my center stone is a .7 carat) so that my center diamond would shine bright and sparkle in my double halo setting, without going above our budget. And honestly, even though I chose J for color, my stone doesn’t look yellow at all, but it saved us money.

You can choose the 4 C’s to reflect the exact price of diamond you’re looking for.

Next, my favorite part:

how to find an affordable engagement ring

You get to choose the exact diamond you want based on your 4 C’s. These diamonds reflect the color, cut, carat, and clarity that I chose on the scales above, as well as the shape I chose (round brilliant), and the price range I chose.

As you can see, some diamonds have some pretty obvious inclusions in them.

That’s what I love about James Allen. You get to choose exactly what you want and you KNOW what you’re getting. When you receive your engagement ring, included in the beautiful packaging is the official paperwork of your diamond, so you know you’re receiving the exact diamond you chose.

My Favorite Tool on James Allen to View Your Actual Diamond:

The 360 degree rotation tool! This tool on the James Allen website allows you to view your diamond on a 360 degree rotation. It allows you to see the color, cut, and clarity of the diamond from an accurate view. And they don’t hide any of the blemishes, which I think is awesome. You’re know exactly what you’re getting!

And that’s why I absolutely LOVE James Allen, and am STILL so happy with my choice to choose them as my personal jeweler.

It’s worth mentioning, after I got my engagement ring, it was a size too big so I decided to have a local jeweler in town resize my ring for me in the same day. This was a huge mistake. I was so in love with my ring I couldn’t fathom parting with it, but because of my rash decision to have it resized at a jeweler I wasn’t familiar with, it cost me.

A couple days after having my engagement ring resized, a diamond fell out! You can image how upset I was. I called James Allen and they said they would have no problem fixing it for me. I sent my engagement ring to them (free shipping) and they fixed the damage from having my ring resized improperly AND replaced the diamond for me for FREE! I’ve had absolutely no problems since. That was 4 years ago.

James Allen truly has amazing customer service and I was SO thankful for their prompt and quality help.

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How To Find An Affordable Engagement Ring – Valuable Tips:

To wrap up, I want to leave you with a few tips my husband and I found to be extremely valuable when engagement ring shopping:

  1. Buy less than 1 full carat: A poorly cut 1 carat diamond goes for about $5,000, whereas a high quality cut diamond goes for $9,000+. GULP. However, there is good news!!! Buy a .9 carat diamond quality cut diamond (which looks essentially the same as a 1 carat), and the price immediately drops to around $4,000. This advice saved my husband a huge chunk of money when engagement ring shopping.
  2. It is NOT all about the size: I’ve been amazed to see rings that are double the size of my engagement ring but cost the same that my husband spent. But, my amazement disappears once I take a look at the ring itself. It’s not hard to spot a cloudy, poor quality engagement ring. Personally, I’d MUCH rather have a smaller engagement ring that sparkles and shines than a big cloudy rock.
  3. Consider different stone cuts: A round brilliant, the most traditional cut, is typically 30% more than any other cut. So if you’re not picky on the stone shape, opt for any cut but round brilliant and save some money.
  4. Look for deals: James Allen is known for having huge sales where all stones, settings, and jewelry is 25% off. If possible, purchase your ring during a sale!

And That’s A Wrap!

What other jewelry buying tips do you have to share? I hope you enjoyed learning more about how to find an affordable engagement ring and what to look for when shopping. If you’re interested in purchasing jewelry or an engagement ring from James Allen, please check out their website here. If you have any questions about James Allen, my experience with them, or how to find an affordable engagement ring, please don’t hesitate to ask me in the comments below or send me an email or message in my contact form. I’d love to hear from you!

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