The 6 Most Common Myths About Engagement Rings
There’s a lot to stress about when planning an engagement and then a wedding
It’s a lot.
We can probably point to much of it stemming from the perceived societal pressure to get married in the first place – that variety that comes potentially from friends and family - and the culture at large. Where does one propose, and is it "impressive" enough? How are you going to do it? And when? Then, there’s the pomp and circumstance of the wedding itself – booking a venue, getting the right food, fretting over who to invite or not. It’s a lot to take in, so anything that can be done to minimize that overbearing weight is much appreciated.
But if there’s one thing we all stress about when considering pitching a forever commitment to a partner, it’s the struggle of finding the right engagement ring
Considering a mined diamond engagement ring? What about the potential conflict of diamond mining? What about the price? Who wants to spend two months’ salary on a diamond wedding ring, after all?
And throughout all this crazy stress, you’re battling all the misinformation out there now on the Internet; not to mention, you’re probably concerned about shopping online for something so important as a diamond engagement ring in the first place. Is that a safe purchase? Who do you trust?
Let’s face it, there are a lot of engagement ring myths out there that you want to be dissected, and that’s why we’re here!
Let’s take a look at the 6 most common engagement ring myths. Dispelling some of these will ease your mind, whilst others are just beyond crazy and are pretty entertaining!
- A Bigger Diamond is a Better Engagement Ring
These myths aren’t ranked in any particular order, but if they were, this would probably be the granddaddy of them all. In fact, not only has this remained a widely held myth, there are multiple myths inherent in it!
One falsehood - that the bigger a diamond is in the ring, the more “love” it symbolises
This, of course, is simply untrue, as qualifying such matters is impossible due to the subjective nature. There’s never been a time more than now where people are seeking to customise their engagement rings, and coloured stones are in, as well as personal engravings, different choices of metal, etc. That means that any expectation about a diamond size is really out the window.
Or what about the factor of if the ring is “big,” it must have to cost a lot, therefore the groom must be more serious and committed about the whole endeavour (more so, that is, than a couple with a “small” ring)?
Well, of course, that is silly, too. The amount of money or size of the ring should only be important to the couple, and it means nothing in terms of their love. Some people, for instance, just don’t want to have a big wedding. They might seek to do it privately at a courthouse. Does that mean they don’t love each other as much as someone who had hundreds of guests, fire breathers and trapeze performers?
- You can't have a coloured stones engagement ring
Trends toward using coloured gemstones as centrepieces in engagement rings aren’t new. If you’re up on your pop culture and/or royals history, you might recall Princess Diana wearing a large blue sapphire ring when she married Prince Charles in 1982! That event touched off a trend for coloured gemstone wedding rings for years afterwards.
However, it is true that in the past, that trend would come and go. The ’90s and most of the 2000s mostly saw a return to classic diamonds as gemstones for engagement rings… but now, look where we are. We’re in a time when more and more couples, celebrities and everyday people are all choosing many manners of “unconventional” stones, engravings, metals, etc to use for the jewellery symbolising their everlasting love.
It remains to be seen if there will be yet another step backwards towards mostly traditional engagement diamond centrepiece stones, but we hope not! Creativity is an awesome thing, and it’s cool to see brands offering programs for designing rings in collaboration with them to match any budget and to make any idea, wild or subtle, a reality!
- Mined Diamonds are rare, and therefore, more special, and should cost two months’ salary (at least)
For over 100 years and counting, the mined diamonds industry has wanted everyone to buy into many myths that all point back to justifying exorbitant pricing for mined diamonds engagement rings.
Mined diamonds are not rare – in fact, the fine jewellery industry is in over-supply of them right now
In 2019, the New York Times confirmed a fact that many shopping for fine jewellery might not be aware of:
“The top diamond miners in the world, including the two largest, Alrosa and De Beers, have an inventory problem. So do many of the cutters and polishers who buy the rough stones and sell them to retailers. At every stage of the supply chain there are too many of these precious gemstones, whose marketing has long depended on their rarity.”
If you read that, thinking, ‘well, this would seem to fly in the face of diamond engagement rings being advertised to me as “priceless” and unique’ – then you’re right on the money!
Mined diamonds are in over-supply, and yet, what hasn’t changed much at all are the prices of many of the major brands’ engagement rings. They still advertise a mined diamond as a rare thing having emotional value. And some of the biggest people in the mined diamonds industry still like to go on about the “natural” aspect of mined diamonds; that the fact they formed in the Earth makes them special.
All of this damage to Earth, plus the potential for conflict diamonds to be bought, plus the high pricing for said diamond rings… it’s very shocking. Especially considering there’s an alternative now in lab-grown diamond rings, which are the exact same diamonds as mined diamonds, even routinely better, and increasingly created using carbon-neutral processes, which basically means no harm to the Earth was done at all.
According to a 2021 London study, 60% of UK men now choose a lab grown diamond engagement ring
In every marketplace, consumers are now seeking more sustainably sourced goods to take more care of the planet. Fine jewellery is no exception, and the desire for ethical purchasing is trending upwards for engagement rings. But this desire for lab grown isn't based just on sustainability, it's also price-focused. Lab-grown diamonds are not only the most sustainable stones for the planet, but they tend to be priced the most fairly as well. One of the study's researchers noted:
"Our survey revealed that whilst men are perhaps being more cautious when making a marriage proposal by not immediately investing in a traditional natural diamond engagement ring and instead of using a lab-grown diamond, they are still spending an average of £3,000 on an engagement ring. In fact, 50 per cent of respondents told us that they had spent between £2000 and £10,000 on a diamond engagement ring and the average carat size in the UK for engagement rings is now 1.5ct-2ct. A lab-grown 2ct diamond would cost you the same as a 0.7ct natural diamond."
- OK, here’s another absurd one – you must keep your wedding ring safe… or else!
Many wedding traditions may be superstitious, but at least they’re fun and relatively harmless as these things go, such as the first bridesmaid who catches the bouquet thrown by the bride will be the next to be married, or that the groom shouldn’t see the bride in her wedding dress before the ceremony, or it could mean bad luck...
…well, OK, that last one is pretty silly and has the potential for unneeded stress.
Similarly, it has been thought in the past, that (and potentially still today) losing a wedding ring can mean you’ll lose your partner
So, when we do lose them, we wonder? 5 minutes after you lose the ring? 10 years later, you should start preparing for a divorce?
Forgive the sarcasm, but it’s of course in the service of this being silly! Luckily, at least, people are less likely to take superstitions to the extremes as much as they would have in the past. There was a woman in London in 1893, for instance, who tragically committed suicide after misplacing her wedding ring due to believing in myths!
- Ordering an Engagement Ring Online is Too Tough
Simply not true! Of course, the more important the purchase, the more someone might want to do it in person, but sometimes, whatever the reason, that just can’t happen. One example would have been during the strictest lockdowns of the COVID pandemic. People still got married on Zoom, at times, and needed rings they couldn’t shop for in stores!
But even now that things have opened back up, and hopefully stay that way, shopping online for nearly anything is the reality. Brands have extensive programs set up to make ordering a ring and even customising it very easy, catering the whole experience exactly to you.
If you’d still rather do it in person, we get it, but if something comes up and you can’t, just know you have options now when it comes to getting everything ready for your big day.
- Dangling your engagement ring over a pregnant stomach can influence your baby’s gender
Hey, do we really need to debunk this one? Let’s go ahead though, for fun!
Yes, it’s really an old myth that was believed for some time (hopefully not now!) that if one were to dangle their ring over a pregnant stomach, you could choose what gender the baby would become in the womb. If you have some questions – like, at what point within the pregnancy will this work? – you’re going to be searching for an instruction manual forever.
So, there you have it! Trust us, those are just common and/or interesting myths out there, it’s by no means all the nonsense you have to sift through when planning a wedding
We hate to break some bad news to end this, but unfortunately, there’s just no surefire way to guarantee health, wealth and happiness. But there are some lights at the end of the tunnel.
Make sure you’re marrying the right person, and that you're doing it for love
Don’t spend too much on a ring, and consider where your ring was sourced. You could get a great price on a wedding ring that has the exact same diamonds as a mined diamond wedding ring – perhaps even more pure – and at a fairer price and without hurting the planet.
Lastly, practical advice as it may be, don’t over-stress on the size of the ring. It’s not about the carat count, it’s about the love between two people! Work with a designer to make the ring that’s right for you regarding budget, gemstone and metal choices and more.
Good luck, and congratulations on your forever union!