Yes, You Can Shop the Internet for Your Engagement Ring

It can be safe and secure to buy an engagement ring online – with a little advice.

First, do your research.

Of course you'll go to a reputable jeweler with an online presence – but it pays to know a few things beforehand. Start with:

Finding the right diamond
  • Whether you want a solitaire, halo or multi-stone ring, brush up on the 4Cs first.
  • Get a second opinion certificate from a recognized diamond-grading laboratory, especially in regard to the diamond's size.
  • You'll have the option of buying a loose diamond and ring (also called a semi-mount) separately, or a finished ring, Use online tools to get the exact style and metal you want.
  • If the retailer has a brick-and-mortar store, have the ring shipped there so you can take a look and possibly make changes - just read the fine print, so you know what you can change and what it costs
  • If you need direct shipping, make sure you know your retailer's shipping, return and security policies, and that you can return or exchange the diamond or ring if it's not to your liking
  • Finally, take your diamond or finished ring to a Graduate Gemologist (G.G.) jewelry appraiser (a "G.G" means they've graduated from the Gemological Institute of America)

Next, move on to metals

It's important to know the pros and cons of the two most popular metal choices for engagement rings:

Platinum vs. gold
  • Platinum is bright white and heavy, resisting scratches and dents better than gold, but it's not indestructible, and it is more expensive than gold.
  • Gold comes in many colors including white, yellow and rose. Oftentimes, you can find a ring with two- or even tri-toned gold.
  • Varying gold karat gives you a range of prices and durability, with 10K the hardest and least expensive, growing softer and more pricey through 14K and 18K (with 24K too soft for jewelry).
  • Even gold rings should have platinum prongs, which are more durable and secure.

One more thing to remember

If you're buying a complete ring (a diamond set in an engagement ring), be sure to get her ring size. You can ask, bring her to any jeweler for her correct size, or go online to find a do-it-yourself ring sizer.

Finally, prepare yourself for a dazzling diamond ring that looks even better than online!

Buying (and paying) online

You've found the diamond, you've selected the ring and even put it in your online shopping cart. Is it OK to click the BUY button?
  • Make absolutely sure that before you enter any credit card information, you are on a secure site. You will know a site is secure if https:// at the beginning of the web address. This basically means that the website has a security layer.
  • Additionally, look for a green padlock icon at the very beginning of the website address. This icon indicates that the website is using HTTPS and that you have a secure connection and you are communicating privately with the website listed in the URL.

There are other security measures on reputable websites, but these are among the two most important. If you see the padlock icon and the https://, you should be comfortable making your online purchase.