Non-Diamond Engagement Rings Becoming More Popular

Diamond solitaires as engagement rings are what seems like an ancient tradition, but they’re more of a 20th-century invention. While consumers are largely sticking with the whole “ring” idea, jewelry stores have noticed that people are exploring ideas other than diamond solitaires.

Older brides who have developed their own sense of style are the main drivers of the trend, jewelers and industry experts told CNN. Style is one factor, and price is another: the president of a sapphire retailer told CNN that generally, a sapphire ring will sell for about half the cost of a diamond ring of the same size.

Diamonds remain controversial for their role in funding conflicts in Africa, and for couples for whom not funding warlords is important, there’s a problem: it’s impossible to trace where a given diamond came from just by inspecting the stone by itself. Even if you don’t know a natural sapphire’s provenance, an expert can tell where the stone came from based on its inclusions.

Diamond engagement rings are so over [CNN]