Your Guide to Buying an Engagement Ring Online

September 07, 2018

Your Guide to Buying an Engagement Ring Online

How do I pick a ring online without trying them on in-person?! 
Buying an engagement ring or wedding band online sight-unseen can be daunting. The more research you do beforehand, the more confident you’ll feel about purchasing a online. Below are some simple ways to gather additional info and insight before making the big purchase: 

Stop into your local jewelry store:

Even if you’re not in love with the ring offerings at stores in your area, scoping out local stores is still helpful for narrowing down your preferences. Stepping into a brick & mortar allows you to try on various center stone sizes, stone shapes, stone colors, metal colors, and ring styles on your own finger. You'll have a better idea of whether you prefer a halo vs. a solitaire, what overall proportion you like, whether you prefer a gemstone or a white stone, etc. Many stores even carry a set of loose CZ's (cubic zirconia) in all shapes/sizes, for the sole purpose of being able to see stone sizes/cuts in person. For example, if you're debating between an 8x6mm or 9x7mm oval cut, you can likely compare a CZ of each oval size in person at a local store. (Tip: call up a few stores ahead of time to ask if they have a set of loose CZ's in calibrated sizes/shapes you can look at.) 

Trying on sizing bands in-person is also the best way to get your finger properly sized. Just be sure to try on rings that are the same millimeter width as the ring you have your eye on. For example, the majority of my rings have a 2mm wide band. If you're unsure of the width of a band on a designer's site, contact them directly. (Tip: visit my FAQ’s for more detailed instructions on how to be properly sized.)

Instagram:

A great resource is to follow the Instagram accounts of the designers you love. Following a designer’s Instagram let's you see rings in different lighting, videos of all angles, and often sneak peeks of new designs. I also love posting real clients' photos, which is a nice way to see rings on various finger shapes and finger sizes. Instagram is also a great snap shot into a designer’s overall feel and aesthetic. 

If there's a certain style of mine you love, you can even search it by hashtag to pull up the posts featuring that style. For example, if you search #EmersonKCJ it will pull up posts featuring my Emerson rings. (You can search by any style name with "KCJ" at the end:  #RosalindKCJ, #VBandKCJ, etc.) You can even search my #IconicGreyMoissanite rings, which is a great way to see how my grey moissanites look in various lighting. 
Kristin Coffin Jewelry on Instagram

Pinterest:

Another resource is Pinterest. Whereas Instagram is great for viewing a single designer's ring collection, the advantage to Pinterest is that it has a powerful search engine that allows you to view rings from multiple designers at once. For example, if you search "Oval Moissanite Halo Ring", it will pull up page after page of oval moissanite halo rings from various designers. Click on a ring you love, and usually you can trace the origin back to the original designer. If you already have a designer you're interested in, Pinterest is another place to see the designer's rings displayed in a way different from the website:

 

Talking to the designer directly:

How often does a customer have the opportunity to work directly with the designer of their engagement ring? Unfortunately, buying an engagement ring or wedding band in a brick + mortar retail store often means a less personal experience. Whereas buying online directly from the designer means you get to interact with the actual designer of your ring! Selling online allows me to keep my business small and personal, and enables me to provide one-on-one customer service, directly with the client. I even have additional resources that can help from afar, such as a printable PDF document that contains all of my halo rings to-scale, so you can "try on" paper ring cutouts! (Just shoot me an email, and I'll send one your way!) 

Look into the designer's reputation:

We live an age where customers are eager to review practically anything bought online, rings included. A quick Google search will give you an overall idea of how past customers have enjoyed working with a particular designer. 

I'd also recommend visiting the "Press" or "Featured In" page on a designer's website. It's a great way to see how other publications have recognized them. For example, my Press Page lists dozens of publications, ranging from Glamour and Harper's Bazaar, to Style Me Pretty and Ruffled blogs. 

Benefits to Buying Online: 

We're in a time where even the most intimate or high-end items can be found online, and typically there's a much better selection than you'd find locally. It's definitely a generational shift: older generations only purchased jewelry in stores, but our generation just isn't buying in stores at the same rate our parents or grandparents did. Because of that, brick & mortar jewelry stores are closing worldwide, whereas online jewelry stores are thriving. That certainly doesn't mean you have to follow the trend of the jewelry industry, but perhaps it's nice knowing that you're in good company with other engaged couples.

Shopping online also allows you the time and space you need to make such a big decision. You won't have the pressure of a salesperson looming over you, so you can weigh the decision without the stress of being put on the spot. Buying online allows you to comfortably shop within your budget, look at thousands of designers online, and even interact directly with the designer. 

Plus, there's nothing sweeter than shopping in your pj's, while eating snacks, with Netflix on in the background...