Diamonds are without a doubt the most popular choice for engagement rings. They’ve been the favoured choice for expressing your love from one partner to another for so long. Fortunately, there are plenty of diamond alternatives out there that are just as beautiful and unique.
One of the reasons being that they’re incredibly durable and are very hardy stones. Another being that they are considered the ultimate symbol of commitment. You can thank De Beers for that!
However, in recent years, the popularity of diamonds being the chosen stone for an engagement ring has decreased. Now, there are far more options available on the market than ever before.
In fact, it is becoming quite trendy to choose an unusual diamond alternative for an engagement ring.
So, we have some suggestions as to what you can look for should you wish to opt for something less conventional.
Gemstones & Lab Produced Diamond Alternatives
Gemstones are a wonderful diamond alternative, with over 200 different kinds to choose from, spanning the entire spectrum of colour and texture. Gemstones come in all kinds of unusual cuts and an exciting variety of shades and tones.
If you have your heart set on a diamond engagement ring but aren’t able to buy one due to cost, ethics or availability then your next best bet is to source a laboratory-made diamond.
Lab grown diamonds have become increasingly popular in recent years as consumers place increasing importance on ethical and sustainable merits of their jewelry, whilst also offering significant savings compared to mined diamonds. Diamonds created in a lab are chemically and physically still the same as a real diamond but will be cheaper and created/sourced in an ethical manner. Lily Arkwright offers a huge range of laboratory grown diamond engagement rings.
Here are 6 suggestions of gemstones and lab produced diamond alternatives to look out for, should you wish to choose one of these for your unique engagement ring:
Sapphire’s are an elegant diamond alternative, they come in a few different colours with the most popular being the blue Sapphire. Other colours include yellow, pink, orange, white and red. They measure at 9 out 10 on the Moh’s hardness scale, which makes them strong and durable, and a close second to a diamond.
The brilliance of each Sapphire will be unique to the stone itself. Each stone is gut and mined differently, making them all totally unique
White Sapphire’s are the cheapest of all the varying colours of Sapphires. They are about half the price of the popular Blue Sapphire. Sapphires in general are cheaper than diamonds, they range between £350 and £1500 per carat.
This dazzling pale blue gemstone is a treat for the eyes. Its colour and texture are rare and the shade of blue is unusual. Aquamarine gemstones measure 7.5 to 8 on the Moh’s Hardness scale. Their shimmering beauty makes them a wonderful choice for a diamond substitute, but they could be easily scratched and damaged due to their mediocre durability. Should you choose aquamarine for your engagement ring, remember that it could then possibly count as your “something blue” on your wedding day.
Aquamarines are famous for their unusual clear blue colour and phenomenal clarity. They are not prided on the most brilliantly sparkly stone, so they are often set around other stones with high brilliance and sparkle.
The price range of Aquamarines is largely decided on the clarity and intensity of the colour of the stone. Price-wise, you are looking at roughly £500 for a 6.5mm cut (1 carat).
This gorgeous “rose-gold” looking gemstone shines its pinky-peach brilliance with ease no matter what kind of jewelry it is set in. Morganite is seen as a softer stone, in hue, strength and durability. It would make a delightful alternative for a diamond ring, but only measures at 7.5 on the Moh’s Hardness scale. It can be worn daily but would need to be treated with care.
Morganite is known for its incredible clarity and has a very high brilliance, especially for a gemstone. Its uniquely warm shades of pink and peach shimmer and shine with ease.
Morganite is a relatively inexpensive gemstone, they are quite common and easy to find. They range from around £300 to £400 per 6.5mm cut (1 carat).
Rubies are breathtakingly beautiful red stones that have always been associated with love, lust and passion. There couldn’t be a more perfect gemstone to use in an engagement ring to celebrate the love you and your partner have for each other. Not only are they the stone of love and passion, but they are also very strong, with a rating of 9 on the Moh’s Hardness Scale.
Rubies are well known for their deep and rich color, and are often celebrated for that more so than their brilliance. They are however a stone with high brilliance and reflective sparkle, especially when held in the light.
Rubies are quite pricey, due to their beauty, popularity and rarity. The deepness and richness of the color and clarity of a Ruby is usually the deciding factor on its price. On average you are looking at around £900 to £1100 per carat.
Moissanite is a mineral/gem that strongly resembles the look, feel and color of a diamond. In recent years, it has become a popular choice for a diamond substitute. It is the second hardest stone in the world, after diamonds of course. It measures 9.5 on the Moh’s Hardness Scale.
Moissanite is indeed a brilliant stone, with eye-catching sparkle. However, a Moissanite has a very distinctive trait that sets it apart from a diamond. This is, when it catches the light it has a rainbow shimmer “disco ball” effect, whereas diamonds do not. Some people are drawn to this unique feature, others may not like it as much.
Moissanite is by far one of the most affordable diamond substitutes. A 6.5mm stone will cost you anywhere from £300 to £700. These prices vary and fluctuate depending on the size, color, and shape of the stone.
Cubic Zirconia has been used as a more affordable diamond substitute since the 1970s. It strongly resembles a diamond and is full of fire and sparkle. If you really want the diamond engagement ring look but don’t want or can’t get a diamond, then this is another wonderful option. It measures in at around 8.5 on the Moh’s Hardness Scale, making it quite strong and durable for everyday wear.
These stunning diamond alternatives now come in many different colors, all of which have a high brilliance. Cubic Zirconia is known to sparkle and shine, slightly less than diamonds, but not much less.
Cubic Zirconia is by far the most affordable option when looking for a diamond substitute. For a round cut piece, you are looking at between £40 and £80 for 1 carat.
There you have it. Some great ideas for diamond substitutes for an engagement ring of your – or your partner’s dreams!
Chermaine’s journey into the world of gemstones and crystals began as a child, collecting shimmering stones on family vacations. Today, she’s a certified gemologist and spiritual healer, intertwining the physical beauty of jewels with their metaphysical properties.
Chermaine has traveled to mines in Africa, marketplaces in India, and spiritual retreats in Bali, always seeking to deepen her understanding.