Engagement Rings: Top 10 under $10,000 styles
Angelica Frey | June 27, 2023
Angelica Frey | June 27, 2023
When it comes to buying an engagement ring, the rule stating that the buyer should spend 1/2/3 months worth of salary is not only outdated, but it is also reductive and stigmatizing. Many factors go into the cost of a diamond. VRAI's lab-grown diamonds are physically, chemically, and optically identical to mined diamonds, but free of the environmental and human toll and lengthy supply chain that characterizes mined diamond. This significantly brings down the cost of lab created diamonds.
While the hefty sum of $10,000 would bring quite a few constraints if you limited your search to mined diamonds, with lab-grown and VRAI created diamonds, you can easily go substantially up in carat weight which maximizes the clarity, color, and cut of the diamond you select.
What Influences the Price of an Engagement Ring?
The metal of choice, the setting design, and the diamond all influence the price of an engagement ring. For starters, not all gold is alike. Pure 100% gold is too soft to be cast in jewelry and for everyday wear, so gold is now sold as alloys with varying percentages of gold.
The most commonly used solid gold alloys are 14k and 18k gold. 14k gold has 58.5% gold and 18k gold is made from 75% gold, while the rest is composed of other metals. . Platinum, a metal with a characteristically white cast and that was frequently used in Art Deco jewelry, will have different costs associated with it as well. .
The price of diamonds varies considerably based on its 4Cs, namely carat weight, color, clarity, and cut. While Cut is the most important of the Cs because it determines the intensity of the brilliance of the diamond, carat weight is the C that affects the price of a diamond the most. The larger and heavier a diamond is, the rarer it is. For example, only about one in every 15 million stones is good enough to become a 2-carat diamond. In addition, the price does not increase in a linear fashion when the carat weight goes up, so a 2-carat diamond won’t cost double the amount of a 1-carat diamond.
Are Some Diamond Shapes More Expensive Than Others?
Different diamond shapes have different prices, even when they otherwise present the same parameters and Cs. This is mostly driven by market demand.Round Brilliant diamonds cost up to 40% more than other diamond shapes with the same carat weight, color, and clarity. Round diamonds are always in high demand and in order to cut a rough diamond into a Round Brilliant diamond, one loses up to 60% of the rough diamond. The discarded parts cannot easily be recut. In addition, creating brilliant cut faceting to optimize fire, brightness, and scintillations requires a high degree of mastery of the craft. By contrast, in order to cut a Princess cut diamond, you only eliminate 20% of the raw diamond, which makes it a more cost-effective choice.
What Determines the Price of a Diamond?
Cut, Color, Clarity, Carat and diamond shape all determine the price of the diamond. Rarity plays a critical role in this. Flawless diamonds represent the top grade in the GIA clarity grading system and are very rare. “So rare, in fact, that it’s possible to spend a lifetime in the jewelry industry without ever seeing one. As you might imagine, they command top prices,” states GIA’s handbook Diamond Essentials.
Color plays an important part, especially at higher carat weights. “The bigger the diamond, the more obvious its color,” states GIA’s Diamond Essentials. “The differences in color can be subtle, but they can cause dramatic variations in price.”
Finally, as carat weight increases, price increases exponentially, and that has to do with the rarity. Only an extremely low percentage of stones are fit to be cut into diamonds larger than 2 carats.
Why Are Lab Grown Diamonds Less Expensive Than Mined Diamonds?
Lab-grown diamonds tend to be less expensive than mined diamonds because their production process isn’t as labor intensive and they have a shorter supply chain.Laboratory-grown diamonds share the same chemical, optical and physical properties and crystal structure as mined diamonds. Advanced testing in a gemological laboratory is required to tell a lab-grown diamond apart from a mined diamond. The main difference lies in their origin, which, in the case of lab-grown diamonds, is always guaranteed and traceable. VRAI created diamonds are created sustainably in the Pacific Northwest without mining, deforestation, cartels, or carbon emissions.
10 Under $10,000: VRAI Selections
The Signature Oval
At a little over $9,500, this 5.36 Oval H, VS2 diamond flawlessly complements the low, unobtrusive signature setting. The fact that the signature comes with a sling that dips slightly below the band ensures that you will easily be able to wear this substantial solitaire every day of your life.
The Classic Round
The gently curved prongs of the Classic solitaire elegantly elevate your diamond to fully maximize its appearance and brilliance. A 5.74 carat, I color diamond with a VS2 clarity grade pairs well both with warmer and cooler-toned metals. The total will be around $9,800.
The Classic Hidden Halo Cushion
The intricate array of hand-set pavé diamonds of VRAI’s Classic Hidden Halo elevates the beauty of the center diamond while casting light in all directions. For under $6,000, this 3 carat F VS2 Cushion cut ensures unprecedented fire.
The Signature Halo Pear
Pear diamonds are uniquely highlighted by the intricate array of hand-set pavé diamonds that compose a Halo setting. This H, VS2 Pear diamond weighs 4.51 carats and the H color still appears white to the naked eye. This ring currently retails for $8,540
The Three Stone Emerald
Having an Emerald three-stone ring creates an extraordinary, Art-Deco-inspired heirloom that is both modern and timeless. Pairing VRAI 2 carat center diamonds in the H color range with 0.25 carat side stones creates a statement-making and refined ring that costs less than $4,500.
The Three Stone Oval
Pairing an Oval diamond with Trillion side stones creates a flattering look that elongates the finger while offering substantial coverage in width, too. With this 2.34 carat H, SI 1 Oval diamond, the total cost of this ring is $5,324.
The Toi et Moi Emerald & Pear
For $7,122, the Toi et Moi featuring a 2.36 carat G SI 1 Emerald and a 2.05 carat G VS2 Pear diamond is an asymmetrical, elegant heirloom-quality ring. VRAI’s diamond experts will pair the stones that are most consistent in terms of surface area and color once you determine the shape and carat weight you favor.
The Pavé Dome Radiant
With a domed band featuring three rows of pavé set diamonds, the Dome Ring has a 2.4mm band that effortlessly and securely accommodates larger carat weights. This 3.39 carat F VS1 Radiant cut has an elongated shape that heightens the illusion of a long, slender finger. The price of this ring is $7,612.
The Cathedral Asscher
Priced at just under $6,500, this Cathedral engagement ring paired with a 2.76 carat F VVS2 Asscher diamond is a work of geometric precision, with the cathedral’s arches and the step-cut facets of the Asscher diamond creating Art Deco elegance.
The Devotion Round
The Channel set band of the Devotion ring emphasizes metalwork and the craftsmanship that goes into the making of a ring. With the classic, four-prong setting, the diamond is elevated and its brilliance is unparalleled. A 3.21 carat H, VS2 round diamond will set the cost of this ring at $6,254.