Should I buy a non-diamond engagement ring?

Should I buy a non-diamond engagement ring?
July 5, 2020 Fairina Cheng

When it comes to engagement rings, you’ve no doubt heard the saying “diamonds are a girl’s best friend”. Since mining giant DeBeers launched its Diamonds Are Forever marketing campaign in 1948, the predominant belief is that an engagement ring always features a big blingy diamond.

Don’t get me wrong. Diamonds are beautiful. If you’ve always dreamt of owning your very own diamond engagement ring, then you can stop reading here. But if you’re one of the growing number of people looking for an alternative to the traditional engagement ring, then this article is for you.

Here are 4 questions to ask to determine if a non-diamond ring (or at least one without a diamond as the centre stone) is right up your alley.

Lilac spinel ring in white gold

What is your budget?

Next to almost any other gemstone in the world, a diamond of the same size is significantly more expensive. Even with precious gems like sapphires, you’ll likely get a stone of the same size (or larger) for much less. A non-diamond engagement ring may be the right choice if you’re looking to save your funds or put them towards a bigger stone.

Do you love colourful engagement rings?

Gemstones come in a much larger range of colours than diamonds can offer. Sapphires, for example, may be blue, green, yellow, teal, pink, orange, purple and even a combination of hues. Choose rubies for a bold red. Aquamarines for a soft blue. Or morganites, another popular engagement ring gemstone, in soft peachy tones.


However, keep in mind that some gems are more durable than others. Diamonds are the hardest gems of all, while sapphires and rubies are the second hardest natural stones, making them top choices for engagement rings. Yes, it is possible to make rings with softer stones, but they should be worn with care. Ask your jeweller about the durability of your preferred gemstones so you can make an informed decision.

Are you looking for a gemstone with meaning?

Perhaps it’s your partner’s birthstone, a gem that reminds you of the sea, or a stone that originates in a country with a special place in your heart. If you like the idea of a softer stone that isn’t a diamond, sapphire or ruby, consider using it as a hidden gem on the inside of your band where it’s more protected.

Are you into non-traditional engagement rings?

Diamonds are classic. But unconventional gems make for unconventional rings. Using a non-diamond gemstone as your centre stone can be a great way to add colour, character and put a unique spin on your special piece. Read more about choosing an engagement ring for your anti-diamond partner.

Pink sapphire rose-gold ring

Need a recommendation on the perfect non-diamond gemstone for you?

As a jeweller that specialises in untraditional engagement designs, my favourite pieces are those with distinctive gems and special stories. Tell me what colour you imagine your engagement ring to be and I’ll send you a personalised gemstone suggestion.

Comments (2)

  1. Mary 2 years ago

    I have a beautiful engagement ring. The jeweler just about had a heart attack when I told him to take out the diamond and put in a amethyst stone in his custom design. But I love it an he agrees. Diamonds do come in other colors also. Goo for it

    • Author
      Fairina Cheng 2 years ago

      Hahaha as a jeweller I shouldn’t support giving jewellers heart attacks, but that’s pretty funny! There are definite benefits to using durable gems like diamonds. However if you want an amethyst and are aware of the difference in durability/longevity then go for it! It’s important to feel like the ring you’re wearing is right for you!

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