5 Engagement Ring Shopping Etiquette Tips

shopping in window of the jewelry storeSource: Syda Productions/Shutterstock.com

Choosing engagement rings and women’s wedding rings can be an overwhelming experience. Even when you know beyond a shadow of a doubt that your partner is “the one,” planning a proposal and ring shopping are entirely different tasks. Rosie Ray is here to ease the stress! We’ll help guide you in the process and make your journey to find the perfect engagement ring a joyful one. 

As you search for a ring online or at a jeweler, remember these five engagement ring shopping etiquette tips. They will help you find the engagement ring of her dreams!

#1 Learn the Basics

Before you go shopping for an engagement ring, brush up on the basics. Learn about the 4 C’s of diamonds — color, cut, clarity and carats — as well as the types of metals and settings. You might want to familiarize yourself with natural and lab-grown diamonds too. 

The Four C’s of Diamonds

Color: While it might be sparkling and crystal clear to the naked eye, a diamond’s color comes in many hues. It can range from truly colorless to yellowish to a light brown. Colorless diamonds more rare, which makes them more valuable too.  

Cut: A quality diamond cut made by a skilled cutter helps to create extra brilliance and dazzle. A higher grade means an expert cut, getting the most sparkle out of your diamond or gemstone.

Clarity: Inclusions and blemishes make a diamond unique. However, you can find a diamond with less. Verify the clarity chart to see where it falls or look for yourself through the microscope. Whether you prefer something clearer or a striking salt and pepper diamond, you do you. 

Carat: Simply put, “carats” is the diamond’s weight. A single metric carat equals one-quarter of a gram. 

Natural vs. Lab Gown Diamonds

Natural Diamonds: Natural diamonds are created under the earth’s pressure for over millions of years and then mined. Many lean toward lab diamonds for fear a more sustainble and conflict-free products. However, with Rosie Ray natural diamonds, you don’t have to worry. All of our diamonds are sustainably sourced using the Kimberley process, preventing conflict diamonds. 

Lab Grown Diamonds: Scientists have discovered how to grow diamonds in a lab that look no different than a natural diamond. They are made up of the very same chemical compounds as a natural diamond – with the same “wow” factor too! Rosie Ray offers both natural and lab-grown diamonds – so take your pick!

When you walk into a jeweler or browse jewelry online, it can help to know a thing or two about what you’re looking at. Even if you don’t know precisely what you want and are looking for something truly unique, knowing these basics can help you set a budget and tell the jeweler what you want.

#2 Window Shop First

engagement ring

Another tip for engagement ring shopping etiquette is to go in with an understanding of your partner’s preferences. The best way to do that is to go window shopping. Luckily, you can go window shopping from the comfort of your couch, so it feels natural and there’s no pressure. Or head into a store and look around. It’s absolutely fine to let a jeweler know you’re just browsing. They may ask you some questions about budget to help narrow your search as well. So know your budget.

Even if you never step foot in a jewelry store, and the proposal is a complete surprise, we encourage couples to find a way to chat about likes and dislikes so you know your partner’s preferences. Something as simple as finding out their preferred gold color and center stone shape would help narrow down your search immensely. And you know your budget, so with that information, you’ll be armed and ready!

And if you are completely surprising your partner, take a look at the jewelry that they wear most often, which will help dictate their style. For instance, she may have a very ornate ring that was her grandmother’s that she keeps but doesn’t often wear BUT she might wear some pretty modern looking minimalist jewelry daily. That would tell you she would like something modern, with simple clean lines and no fuss.

Shop Our Minimalist Collection

#3 Focus on Rings Within Your Price Point

It bears repeating - before you shop for engagement rings, have a budget in mind. Look at rings within your budget and try not to get distracted by something above your means. Be considerate and upfront with salespeople about your price range and politely let them know if they are showing rings out of your budget range. This will help them and you get back on track.

Furthermore, setting a clear budget means you won’t be trying to haggle the price down. You might be able to negotiate the ring’s purchase down a hair, but haggling or lowballing a salesperson or jeweler is just plain bad engagement ring shopping etiquette. In short: Stick to a budget and be comfortable with it.  

Rest assured if you truly fall in love with something outside of your budget, a lot of jewelers have financing programs you can look into if you qualify, but you can also look at changing out the center stone in most rings to either a lab diamond or a colored gemstone to come down on price and help you get back in budget.

#4 Purchasing Typically Falls to Guys (But You Do You!)

Traditionally, engagement ring shopping etiquette dictates that the ring is to be purchased by the man. This might be the norm, but the rule is not set in stone (pun intended). Some couples, especially same-sex partners, might choose to split the cost of engagement rings and wedding rings. So, today, the tradition still stands, but it should really come down to what you and your partner would prefer. Typically the engagement ring should be purchased by the proposer who is making the beautiful romantic gesture!


Also, keep in mind that it’s generally advised to purchase a ring three months before popping the question, allowing you time to have your ring crafted and make plans for the big proposal. If you’re shopping with Rosie Ray, be sure to account for our 3- to 4-week turn-around time for our handcrafted rings that are made to order.

Put a Wedding Ring on That Finger, Already

#5 Be Honest About the Ring

surprise proposal marry me sign

Source: NAK Photographer/Shutterstock.com

During the proposal, be in the moment. Take a moment to cry tears of joy, embrace and, of course, say “yes.” Slide the engagement ring on the finger and take it all in. Feels good, right? Okay, well maybe it’s a little loose or tight. Don’t worry, it happens. Just be honest and let your partner know it doesn’t quite fit. 

Luckily, Rosie Ray allows you to exchange your new engagement ring for a different size. We offer one free resizing within 30 days of your delivery date. So if you are proposing – don’t worry! She’ll love it or your money back!

Shop women’s wedding rings and engagement rings at Rosie Ray today!