Which is the Right Colored Gemstone for Your Engagement Ring?


A delicate gold band, and a lovely round cut diamond in the middle. That simple design engaged couples for generations. That is, until the millennial generation came along. Always finding ways to take tradition and turn it just a bit sideways, it’s becoming more and more popular to choose colored gemstones instead of diamonds. It’s a dramatic new look, but it does come with some precautions.

While colored gemstones are striking, some are more fragile than others and are not suited to be worn every day. Over time, the clarity begins to drop, they become cloudy, and they lose their vibrant appearance.

Fortunately, there are options for stones that will stand up to daily wear and stand out in a crowd. Your first option is colored diamonds. Diamonds can come in canary yellow, pink and blue, and like traditional diamonds they don’t require any special care. The colors make a statement, and the durability means the statement will last for years.

If you’d still like to move away from the traditional diamond, your next best choice is a sapphire.  Sapphires are almost as tough as diamonds. In fact, sapphires are so hard the only thing that can scratch them is a diamond. As the third hardest mineral on Earth, you can wear sapphires daily as long as you care for them properly.

Sapphire and Diamond Engagement Ring

Sapphires come in almost every color on the spectrum. Yellow, pink, orange, green, purple, turquoise, and, of course, blue. Throughout history, the color of the sapphire has come with great symbolism. Blue sapphires have a history of representing loyalty and devotion. The rich, deep colors of sapphires are almost hypnotic.

Other colored stones that can stand up to the standards expected of an engagement ring include emeralds. Jackie Kennedy’s engagement ring was a dramatic emerald next to a complimenting diamond. While the color range is not as vast as diamonds or sapphires, emeralds can still be found in a range from deep green to aqua.

Emerald and Diamond Engagement Ring

Finally, you might consider a ruby. The profound red color has symbolized love, passion, and courage for centuries.

Ruby and Diamond Engagement Ring

When shopping for these unique gemstones, you’ll want to be weary of inclusions. Like diamonds, an inclusion both impacts the vibrancy of the stone, and its durability. Other stones like opals and pearls are not meant to be worn daily and would not have the durability to be an engagement ring.

The options for engagement ring choices that go beyond the traditional diamond are endless. Our team at Shreve & Co. are experts in all kinds of gemstones and can help you find something that will both make a statement, and last as long as your love.

Visit our experts in person in San Francisco and Palo Alto.

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