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Your Guide to Choosing an Engagement Ring Style

You chose the perfect diamond, now you need to choose the engagement ring style that will be a ring she will want to wear for many years to come.

There are so many types and styles to choose from, but you know her best.

What can you envision her wearing? What kind of jewelry does she wear already? What styles has she "liked" on social media? Has she told any of her family or friends what she likes?

As your personal GIA expert Jewelry Concierge, I will guide you through questions like these and help you find or create that Perfect Ring that will make you the heroic Prince.

It will be a ring of her dreams that she will want to show off to all of her friends!

Engagement Ring Styles


A solitaire ring has a single stone, generally a diamond, set in a basic setting (usually four or six prongs).

The solitaire is:

  • One of the most popular engagement ring settings.

  • Simple, graceful and timeless.

  • Available in a wide range of sizes and designs.

A solitaire style designed with a narrow band will enhance the appearance of a smaller diamond and complement little or thin fingers.

A solitaire with a thicker band gives more variety:

You can have:

  • A split shank.

  • A more modern negative space look.

  • Engrave designs or patterns.

  • More options to setting the center diamond.

Ring guards (or ring wraps) are used in many solitaire rings to frame the central diamond and make it appear larger.


To provide the appearance of a solid diamond surface, a pavé engagement ring is encrusted with very little diamonds all around the band.

Because pave-set diamonds are held in place by tiny beads or prongs, very little of the metal band shows through, giving the impression that the diamonds are free-standing.

Pave settings can go all the way around the band (full pave) or stop halfway around it (half pave).

Micro pave rings are even more delicate and detailed than traditional pave.

Because the stones are so small, they appear to merge together and create a spectacular display of fire.

Pave engagement rings:

  • Are very popular.

  • Give a lot of glittering sparkle.

  • Are more delicate since the bead prongs are very small.

  • Shouldn't be worn for active women that are hard on their hands.

Channel Set

Small diamonds, usually round, princess or straight baguette, are inserted into a groove cut into each side on the mounting walls creating a channel.

The diamonds are held in place by a thin metal strip rather than prongs and sit side by side with no space in between each stone.

Channel set rings are:

  • Sturdier than other styles.

  • Protective of the diamonds.

  • Less likely to catch on clothing because the diamonds are flush with the band.

  • Gives an ALL diamond look since there is no metal in between the stones.

  • Great for active women.

  • A classic look.

Large Side stones

Large side stone engagement ring settings, which typically consist of a main diamond flanked by two or more slightly smaller-sized side diamonds to create a 3 stone or 5 stone engagement ring.

The center diamond is usually set slightly higher that the side diamonds and are prong set, basket set, or bezel set.

Large Side stone rings:

  • Enlarge and brighten the center diamond.

  • Give a more striking and beautiful overall appearance since the side stones are usually large too.

  • Three stone and five stone rings are the most popular.

  • Have a variety of options to set next to and enhance the center.

Typical side diamonds are:

  • Round Center: Round, Pear or Baguettes

  • Radiant or Rectangular Cushion Center: Trillions

  • Emerald Center: Emerald, Trapezoid or Baguettes

  • Princess Center: Princess or baguettes

  • Oval Center: Oval, Pear or Half Moon

Tension Set

Tension engagement rings are a type of modern engagement ring in which the diamond is held in place by the setting's physical force rather than prongs.

Tension set rings

  • Make the diamond appear to be floating in mid-air.

  • Shows a lot of sparkle from the center diamond.

  • Are among the most secure, as the entire band works to keep the diamond in place even tighter than prong settings.

  • Round, princess, and emerald shapes are the most popular shapes for this style.


The halo engagement ring is designed with a main gemstone surrounded by smaller, micro pave diamonds.

Halo set rings

  • Enhance to the ring's overall sparkle.

  • Gives the center stone a larger appearance.

  • Protects the center diamond with a single or double halo "buffer".

  • Very popular.

  • Are a more modern twist on the classic solitaire ring.

  • Enhances any shape.

  • You have the option of creating most any shaped halo which can be different from the center shape. The most popular is to set a round diamond with a cushion halo.


Vintage and antique-style engagement rings combine the beauty and intricate craftsmanship of vintage jewelry with the sturdiness and longevity of modern engagement ring design processes.

Vintage-style engagement ring designs

  • Are inspired by different eras

  • Usually have diamonds cut in current diamond shapes that optimize fire, brightness, and light reflection.

  • Have more texture to create an antique look.

  • Are more elaborate in design with scroll-work, millgraining, or open filigree.

  • Usually wider rings to highlight the beautiful detail work.

So which style is perfect for her?

If this has helped you decide or still need help deciding, then click the button below to schedule your FREE Consultation.

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