Does an Engagement Ring Have to Have a Diamond?

Getting engaged is a huge milestone in your life and whether you are proposing, or you’re being proposed to, the engagement ring is the most popular symbol of this next phase in your relationship.  Diamonds are the traditional choice when it comes to an engagement ring and there is one very good reason why.  Diamonds make an excellent choice for engagement rings because they are the hardest gemstone used in jewelry.  Since many women rarely take off their engagement ring, hardness is key in the stone maintaining its beauty over time. So does an engagement ring have to have a diamond?

Say a diamond isn’t your first choice when looking at an engagement ring, though.  It’s becoming more and more popular for couples to stray from tradition and find something that better matches their unique style.  Since there is no set rule when it comes to what gemstone an engagement ring must be made with, you have many other options to choose from.  Here are some beautiful, but less traditional options for your engagement ring:


One of the most popular alternatives to diamonds is a sapphire.  They come in a huge variety of different colors and prices.  Sapphires make a great choice because they are second in hardness to diamonds and should withstand daily wear without as much damage as some of the other gemstones used in jewelry.  Blue is the traditional color for sapphire, but colors like teal, purple, and green are becoming much more popular in modern engagement rings. So if you want a hard gem but with a large color profile, the sapphire might be for you.


Fun fact: all red sapphires are rubies.  They are the same gemstone (corundum); ruby is just the name for a red sapphire.  This means all the same durability perks apply.  If you’re into a red engagement ring, this is a great option for you.


Moissanite is a lab-created gemstone that has gained a lot of popularity for engagement rings as it looks like a diamond, has a similar hardness to sapphire, and is much more budget-friendly. You can buy a high-quality 1ct round brilliant cut moissanite for around $300 while a similar quality natural diamond will cost thousands.

Semi-Precious Gemstones

One of the newest trends in engagement rings is using semi-precious gemstones like opals and pearls.  Other options could include garnet, amethyst, topaz, tourmaline, alexandrite, tanzanite, etc.  These gems veer from tradition and make for some unique and beautiful rings.  The only downside to using one of these gemstones is their lack of durability.  For a ring that is going to be worn daily, most of these stones can start to show damage very quickly.  If you choose one of these options, just be very conscience of how you wear your ring.    

Does an Engagement Ring Have to Have a Diamond?

Lab Grown Diamonds

Lab-grown diamonds are identical to natural diamonds apart from where they originate.  Natural diamonds are earth mined while lab-grown diamonds are man-made using machines.  This would still be using a diamond for your engagement ring, but if cost is a concern, they are significantly less expensive than natural, mined diamonds.  Many couples are choosing this option to get the exact same beauty and durability as the traditional diamond engagement ring but at a fraction of the price.

Ultimately, an engagement ring can be designed however best suits your style!  While diamonds are the most traditional gemstone, you have so many more options to consider when looking at rings.  Which gem do you like best??      


Does an Engagement Ring Have to Have a Diamond?

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