What should you spend on an engagement ring?

What should you spend on an engagement ring?

What Should You Spend on an Engagement Ring?

There is an old saying that an engagement ring should cost three months’ salary...

Today it’s generally accepted that there’s no set amount someone should spend on an engagement ring, because everyone’s budget and preferred style is different. So how does someone pick the perfect ring for their partner, or themselves?

The old rule was clear and easy to follow. Today however, there are no rules, which means you have to spend a bit more time trying to find the right ring. And when it comes to finding your dream ring at the perfect price, an extra bit of research makes it all worth it.

Why are diamonds the perfect stone for engagement rings?

There is no gemstone quite like a natural diamond. Each stone is dazzling when cut and polished - the ideal fixture for stunning jewellery. But it's the unique quality of diamonds which makes them a powerful symbol of everlasting love. No two diamonds are alike. This timeless 'gift of nature' is as distinctive as it is pretty, the perfect symbol to promise lifelong commitment.

But diamonds haven’t always been the only choice for engagement rings.

Diamonds were not always the traditional stone of engagement. This all changed in 1477 when Austrian royalty, Archduke Maximillian, commissioned the first diamond engagement ring for his betrothed, Mary of Burgundy, and the fashion took off. By the turn of the century, the number of diamond engagement rings on the market had gone up significantly. It wasn't until the 1930's however that the trend really stuck, when diamonds, recognised and beloved for their eternal sparkle, became the go-to stone for engagement rings. 

The idea that a person should spend a months’ salary on a diamond engagement ring started around the same time, crept up to two months’ salary in the 80s, and has since become the “three month salary” rule that many people know today.


Average engagement ring costs

It’s difficult to pin down what the average Australian pays for an engagement ring. A survey of over 3000 couples from Easy Weddings showed that average cost was about $5,134.

Some experts think that this number is too low, and others too high. Still, three months’ salary for the average Australian is about $15,500, which demonstrates that fewer people are sticking to the three month rule.

And still, it’s not uncommon for people to want to show their love through expensive rings. Famously, George Clooney spent $600,000 on his ring for Amal. Kim Kardashian was given a $9.9 million ring by Kanye, and Heidi Klum’s canary yellow diamond engagement ring is worth $150,000.

When looking at the cost of an engagement ring, what’s more important is to find the ring that speaks to your personal preferences and the unique love and connection you share with your loved one. As one of only a handful of Argyle Pink Diamond Select Atelier’s, Nina’s has a range of one-of-a-kind engagement rings, including precious and rare pink diamonds.

The perfect ring will always fit your budget, so that you’re in the best position to start your life together. And if it does go a little over, we can help with our 0% interest financing option, or layby. All you need to do is follow our guide to find the ring that is right for you.

Guide for buying diamond engagement rings

The most important factors for you and your partner to consider are:

  • taste (especially taste of the wearer),
  • your own financial circumstances, and
  • the objective quality of the jewellery.


Each stone is unique, but they all share a set of qualities that allows them to be evaluated and assessed by referring to a diamond’s cut, clarity, colour and carat weight. These are known as the four Cs of diamond grading.

Heavier diamonds (higher carat) are typically more expensive than diamonds with a lower carat weight, but only if the diamonds are otherwise similar in quality. Smaller diamonds that have rarer or more desirable colours, such as Argyle pink diamonds, will fetch higher prices than their larger counterparts.

Diamond clarity is the least impactful on the final price. Stones with many blemishes and inclusions will still appear brilliant and beautiful to the naked eye.

Different cuts and colours of stones are more likely to influence the price.

Argyle Pink Diamond Engagement RingColourless diamonds are purer. This actually makes them more affordable than diamonds that have impurities that cause dazzling colours, like the Argyle pink diamond which is beautiful and rare.

Of all cuts, the most expensive is a brilliant cut. This cut requires master crafting that allows more facets, which captures more light, for a more eye-catching and beautiful stone. For this reason, a brilliant cut is the diamond cut most used for engagement rings.

Oval and emerald cuts tend to be least expensive diamond cuts, as less of the stone is wasted in the cutting process.

The ring style will also impact the final cost of the engagement ring, including the ring metal and diamond setting. Platinum and palladium rings are the most costly, while silver rings tend to be the least expensive. Settings with multiple stones will also cost more than a solitaire setting.

White Gold Engagement RingWhen considering the ring metal, it’s important to also consider what metal colours you already wear. If most of your jewellery is yellow gold, then a white gold engagement ring may be difficult to pair with your other beloved pieces. Taking a look at your existing collection before deciding on your ring style can make pairing jewellery together much easier later on.

Now that you know what experts look for when they assess the dollar value of a ring, you have everything you need to find the ring that was made for you.

The custom ring solution

Knowing how assessors use the four Cs makes it possible for you to customise the different aspects of your ring, so that you can find the perfect piece for you without overspending.

For example, if your dream diamond is big, and you are less interested in its cut, you can get a larger stone with an oval cut. If you have a personal preference for silver this leaves more room in your budget to splash out on the stone of your dreams.

Maybe you’ve always dreamt of a large, brilliant diamond in a gold setting. A luxury diamond like this is within reach when you choose a clearer stone and limit the number of settings in your ring. This can create a minimalistic look that accentuates your dream diamond.

There is an unlimited number of tweaks and style changes you can use to personalise a diamond ring. If you still feel a little overwhelmed or uncertain, you can speak to a Nina’s Diamond and Design specialist, who will use years of experience to craft the piece of your dreams to your style and budget.

A Nina’s Diamond and Design specialist will walk with you through the process of crafting your perfect ring. Together, we can choose the perfect stones, precious metal and setting. A specialist really listens to you, so that we can develop an understanding of who you are, using advanced modelling technology to craft the ring that matches your personality and speaks to your relationship.

When you understand concepts around the four Cs, we can have a more in-depth conversation as we journey to find the ring that is made for you.

Contact us now to begin the journey.

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