3 Month’s Salary Buys A Lot In 2023: Here’s How To Get The Best Value And Luxurious Glamour When Shopping For An Engagement Ring


The ‘three-month salary’ rule is a time-honored, albeit a somewhat controversial guideline for prospective proposers. It suggests that you should spend approximately three months of your income on that special diamond ring. But where did this rule originate? Is it still applicable today, particularly when you’re considering a luxury engagement ring purchase in 2023?

The concept traces back to the mid-20th century. While effective for marketing, it’s crucial to remember that this rule is not a one-size-fits-all solution. Every couple’s situation and preferences are unique.

Fast forward to today, the engagement ring industry has evolved dramatically. We live in a diverse society with varied personal and financial circumstances. Therefore, adhering strictly to the three-month salary rule may not work for everyone. Instead, a more sensible approach is to determine what you can comfortably afford without compromising other financial obligations.

Factors Influencing the Cost of Engagement Rings in 2023

In 2023, numerous factors determine the cost of an engagement ring. Here, we unpack some of them to help you understand what you’re paying for and why. Firstly, the size and quality of the diamond (or other gemstones) significantly influence the price. The Gemological Institute of America’s (GIA) grading system, encompassing cut, clarity, colour, and carat weight—commonly known as the 4Cs—is a useful guide. Larger diamonds of high quality are rarer and thus more expensive.

The metal used for the ring band also impacts the price. Platinum, for instance, is more costly than gold due to its durability and rarity. The type of gold (yellow, white, rose) can also sway the price. The design and craftsmanship involved in the ring can affect cost. Handmade rings or those with intricate designs typically command higher prices due to the increased labor and skill required.

Brand prestige can add a premium to the price. Renowned luxury brands can charge more for their rings due to their reputation, quality assurance, and the value that customers place on their brand name. Understanding these factors is crucial in determining what drives the cost of your potential engagement ring and in making an informed choice that suits your budget and preference.

Where to Buy Engagement Rings

Knowing where to purchase an engagement ring is just as important as knowing what to buy. Different vendors offer various advantages and, depending on your priorities and preferences, some may be a better fit for you than others.

Traditional jewellery stores offer the advantage of a physical shopping experience. You can see, touch, and compare rings in person, and ask questions to an immediate human source. High-end jewellers also often provide a luxurious shopping experience that includes excellent customer service and after-sales care. However, their prices often reflect these additional services and experiences.

Online vendors have significantly grown in popularity, especially amid the digital acceleration caused by recent global events. They can offer competitive prices as they don’t carry the same overhead costs as physical stores. Many have user-friendly websites with 3D viewing options, comprehensive information, and customer reviews.

Reputable online jewellers also provide certificates for their diamonds and have solid return policies. It’s essential, however, to do thorough research to ensure the online retailer is reputable. You will also want to work with online jewellers that offer a wide range of engagement rings, such as Lorel Diamonds. It’s unlikely that you will look at the first ring online and be convinced, it may take some time to search to find the ideal engagement ring!

Independent jewellers and designers are an excellent choice if you’re looking for something unique. They can work with you to create a custom engagement ring to match your exact specifications and often have more room for price negotiation.

Maximising Value When Shopping for Your Engagement Ring

Getting the best value from your engagement ring shopping experience requires a nuanced understanding of the industry and a few insider tips. Education is paramount. Understanding the 4Cs of diamond grading helps you to understand the worth of what you’re considering. Is a larger diamond with a visible inclusion more valuable to you than a smaller one with flawless clarity? These are the kinds of trade-offs to consider.

Consider buying just shy of the carata. Diamond prices jump at whole and half-carat weights. If you choose a diamond that’s slightly less than a whole or half-carat, you can save significantly and the size difference will hardly be noticeable.

A beautiful setting can make a diamond appear larger and more dazzling. Choosing a ring with a halo of smaller diamonds around the centre stone can increase the ring’s overall sparkle and make the central diamond appear larger. Be savvy about where you purchase from. Reputable online retailers can offer lower prices than brick-and-mortar stores as they have less overhead.

However, ensure that any online retailer you choose has a good return policy, just in case the ring doesn’t meet your expectations when it arrives. By keeping these pointers in mind, you can ensure that you get the most bang for your buck, or sparkle for your sterling, as it were.

How to Choose an Engagement Ring That Matches Your Budget

Just because you’re working with a budget doesn’t mean you can’t find a luxurious engagement ring that still takes your breath away. It’s all about being savvy with your choices and knowing where to make smart concessions. You should ensure you define your budget and stick to it. Remember that an engagement ring is symbolic; it doesn’t have to jeopardize your financial stability.

Ensure you prioritize what matters most to you. If size is your main concern, you might consider a diamond with a slightly lower grade on the colour or clarity scale to achieve a larger carat size within your budget. If quality is paramount, opt for the best cut, color, and clarity you can afford, even if it means downsizing the carat.

Diamonds might be the traditional choice, but sapphires, rubies, emeralds, and other gemstones can make stunning, unique, and often more affordable alternatives. As well as the gems themselves, you should explore various metal options. While platinum is durable, 14K or 18K gold, be it white, yellow, or rose, are also fantastic choices that can help cut costs.

Lastly, don’t overlook the power of negotiation, particularly in independent jewellery stores. Unlike major brands, these stores may be more willing to discuss pricing. Remember, an engagement ring’s worth isn’t defined by its price tag. It’s about the love and commitment it represents.

JL Staff

The JustLuxe Team strives to bring our members and readers the very best in luxury news and conversations. We love to hear your opinions and suggestions, but most of all, we love to interact with you. ...(Read More)

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