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What are the Different Types of Engagement Rings?

By Deborah Ng
Updated May 21, 2024
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Engagement rings come in many different sizes and shapes, stones and settings, making the possibilities nearly endless. Someone who is ready to pop the question, but who doesn't know a thing about rings, will want to consider several factors. The parts of the ring should be considered, as should the possible cuts of the diamond.

Basically, engagement rings have three parts:

  1. The band is the part of the ring that goes around the finger. Bands are made of silver, platinum or gold.

  2. The setting is the part of the ring holding the stone. On some rings, the setting is pronged, while other settings are more "invisible."

  3. For many, the stone is the most important part of the ring. Diamonds are the stones most often associated with engagement rings.

The size and the shape of the stone is usually a matter of budget since the bigger the stone, the more expensive it's likely to be. Most engagement rings have diamonds, although this isn't always the case. Choosing the type of stone, therefore, is usually quite easy, cut choosing the size (or carat) and shape of the stone is a whole other story.

The different cuts of diamonds are as follows:

  • Round — The most popular style for rings. Round goes with just about any setting and is supposed to be the best shape to show off the stone's brilliance.

  • Princess — A square diamond which looks bigger than differently shaped diamonds of the same weight.

  • Emerald Cut — This rectangular diamond is considered the most sophisticated of all the shapes.

  • Marquis — Although it's also round, it looks longer than a round or oval cut diamond because it's pointed at two ends.

  • Pear — The pear shape is almost rounded at the top but pointed at the bottom. The pear doesn't look very good as a single stone set into a ring. This shape is recommended for other types of jewelry, such as necklaces or earrings.

  • Oval — This cut is similar to the round cut, but looks bigger because of its shape. This shape works best with larger stones.

It's okay for shoppers not to know what type of ring to purchase. Doing some research beforehand helps, and those who have questions or who aren't sure which diamond is right for them should be afraid to ask the jeweler. If he or she is reputable, the jeweler be more than happy to share his or her expertise.

BeautyAnswered is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

By giddion — On Oct 21, 2012

@Oceana – They aren't plain at all. Even though they are square, they are multi-faceted, so they reflect the light in many directions. My princess cut ring holds rainbows of color at times.

I do have a lot going on with the shape and settings in the band, but even if all I had were the one princess cut diamond, it would still look pretty because of all the facets. The same goes for emerald cut diamonds. You will probably never see an engagement ring with a stone that doesn't have facets all over it.

By Oceana — On Oct 20, 2012

Are princess cut diamond engagement rings usually rather flat and boring? It seems like a plain square diamond wouldn't be all that interesting.

I suppose if you dressed it up with interesting texture on the band, it might be okay. I'm just wondering if this is all there is to one of these stones.

By orangey03 — On Oct 20, 2012

I think pink diamond engagement rings are so pretty! My mother thought I was crazy for wanting one instead of the traditional white diamond, but I've always been a little unconventional!

My fiancee picked out a beautiful engagement ring with a round pink diamond in the middle. Tiny white diamonds surround it, and the white gold band twists on either side.

What I love most about the ring is that the setting lies almost flat against the band. I don't get it snagged on clothing and other things, and it is easy to wear gloves over the ring.

By JackWhack — On Oct 19, 2012

I helped my husband pick out my ring. We looked at relatively cheap engagement rings, because we could not afford anything extravagant.

I was able to find a round ring with simulated diamonds for only $200. It also had more smaller diamonds around the sides of the ring, and they all blended together well. It really looked a lot like my ideal ring.

The fact that the diamonds were simulated did not bother me. I didn't want us to be in debt for years paying for a real diamond ring. I would rather use that money on bills and vacations!

By BrickBack — On Jul 22, 2010

Suntan12- You sound like you have a beautiful ring. I just want to add that you can also design your own engagement ring.

This is ideal if you have a smaller budget and want to contain costs. A jeweler can help you with the settings.

The first thing you have to do is consider the type of cut you want your diamond to have. Do you want an Emerald or a Princess cut for example?

Once you decide on which cut is best, then you have to consider the setting. You can have a single diamond in the center or a three diamond setting with the primary diamond in the middle and a diamond on each side of it.

By suntan12 — On Jul 22, 2010

I want to add that my engagement ring had a princess cut and a three stone setting.

Later when I got married and had my wedding ring custom designed to fit my engagement ring. My mother-in-law gave me the diamonds and the jeweler created a design of four round diamonds on the top and four round diamonds on the bottom.

The ring looks like a beautiful flower. I get a lot of compliments from it.

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