If you've got wedding bells ringing in your ears, choosing an engagement ring is usually the first order of business. Whether it's a couple hitting the jewelry store together or a bride-to-be looking to give her groom a general idea of the styles she likes, knowing what's out there is key to finding the perfect ring.
From diamond shapes to different types of gold, a lot of factors play into selecting a ring that best reflects a woman's personal style. Lucky for you, Metro consulted the wedding ring experts over at Simon G. Jewelry to shed some light on today's most popular engagement rings.
ROSE GOLD IS HOT
In recent years, platinum and white gold have been the go-to for engagement rings—but times are changing.
"We're seeing rose gold becoming more of a choice much more often," says Simon G. spokesperson Brooke Brinkman.
Rose gold is pretty much exactly what it sounds like. Made up of yellow gold mixed with copper, it creates a final look that's a bit softer and more delicate than fully gold rings. It also boasts super-subtle pinkish undertones.
According to Brinkman, more and more women are initially requesting complete rose gold rings. However, after trying on various styles, most of them end up going with a ring that has rose gold accents.
"I think that's a very interesting point because the ability to interact with and engage in the pieces is still a really important part of the process because it helps you hone in on what you want."
HALO SETTINGS ARE STILL GOING STRONG
Perhaps the most popular setting right now is a string of diamonds that encircles a center stone like a halo. When the center diamond is surrounded by this type of setting, it creates the illusion that the center stone is much larger than it actually is.
"We are still seeing halo be very, very popular, especially with one- to one and a half-karat center stones," says Brinkman. "When we're getting into larger stones, halo isn't as significant of a design element, but we do see a lot of requests for halo moving through."
STACKING RINGS IS ON THE RISE
One trend that's flowing from general fashion to the wedding ring industry is stacking. In other words, wearing a wedding band, engagement ring, and then additional bands all on the same finger. Brinkman says she's getting tons of requests for engagement rings that give the opportunity to have multiple bands added to it. (For example, adding another band as an anniversary gift or a push present later down the line.)
"Most people aren't welding them together; usually they are going to mix and match them," says certified gemologist Elizabeth Woolf-Willis. She adds that this trend provides the ability to wear all the rings together on one finger, or spread them out across both hands for an entirely different look.
THE SHAPES AND STONES TO LOOK OUT FOR
Forget the princess cut—vintage-inspired diamonds with rounder edges are where it's at right now.
"We've been seeing oval trending a lot more, as well as the vintage aspects of emeralds and asschers; like Angelina Jolie's beautiful multiple emeralds in her ring," says Woolf-Willis.
While brilliant-cut diamonds, such as round and princess cuts, are going for pure sparkle, asschers and emeralds are compared to a clear pool of water. The final look is less in-your-face sparkle and more depth and clarity.
As for gemstones, diamonds hardly stand alone as a bride's only choice. "Colored-stone centers are huge," says Brinkman. "Jessica Simpson having the ruby, Princess Kate having the sapphire; it's definitely playing into the decision-making process, and we're seeing more requests for this."
Another popular idea is to incorporate the bride and groom's birthstones into the engagement ring.