Finding your perfect engagement ring doesn't have to be overwhelming. While we recognize the vocabulary around cut, color, style, and more can sometimes feel more like a lesson in terminology than picking out a meaningful piece of jewelry, we are here to make the engagement ring shopping process easier— and therefore more enjoyable— for you.
If you've ever felt lost when talking with a jeweler or doing engagement ring research, this vocabulary guide is for you. While we promise to use easy-to-understand language when you visit us at Affinity & Co. Jewelers, this guide should serve you as you research and compare to avoid doubt as you find the perfect ring for your partner.
Jewelry and Engagement Ring Vocabulary Guide
4Cs: Acronym standing for cut, color, clarity and carat— these are the top four characteristics to look for when purchasing a diamond.
Accent diamonds: Diamonds that surround or enhance the main diamond; they are typically smaller in size than the main diamond.
Crown: Top half of a diamond.
Halo: Ring of diamonds or stones surrounding a center diamond or stone.
Pavilion: Lower half of a diamond.
Scintillations: Sparkles in a diamond that are seen as the diamond moves under a light.
Table: Flat surface that is the uppermost part of a diamond; it is calculated by dividing the width of the table by the width of the diamond.
The Diamond Cut
Asscher cut: Square shaped diamond with a high crown, step facets, and a small table.
Cushion cut: Square cut diamond with rounded edges and the third most popular diamond cut.
Emerald cut: Rectangular shaped with small, rounded edges and a large, open table.
European cut: Antique diamond cut created before the precision created by modern technology was available.
Heart cut: Diamond in the shape of a heart typically found in solitaire settings.
Marquise cut: Long and narrow diamond-shaped similarly to a football. It’s best set with prongs on each end to protect the points from chipping.
Oval cut: A unique take on a round diamond. Oval-shaped stones come in a variety of widths ranging from slim to wide.
Pear cut: Combination of a round and a marquise shape diamond available in a variety of narrow to wide sizes.
Princess cut:The second most popular diamond cut, below round and above cushion. The cut has a square or rectangular shape when viewed from above, and from the side is similar to that of an inverted pyramid with four beveled sides.
Radiant cut: Square or rectangular diamond with minimal curved edges similar to an emerald shape.
Round cut: Circular-shaped diamond. It’s the most common shape for engagement rings.
Trillion cut: Triangular shaped diamond, often used as side stones to frame a square diamond.
The Ring Style
Art deco: Rings created during or inspired by the art deco era from 1920 to 1935, known for bold line and geometric shapes.
Baguette: Meaning “long rod” in French, the baguette cut features long, clean lines, and is typically used in side stones.
Band: Ring that tends to accompany an engagement ring. Can be made of a precious metal, alloys, and/or include stones.
Bezel: Metal that completely surrounds the diamond or featured gemstone. A half bezel is the term used when half of the stone is framed by metal. Bezel ring settings are stronger and more protective than prong settings.
Colored diamond: Natural and dyed color diamonds. Popular diamond color options include yellow, pink, blue, chocolate and black.
Colored gemstone: Engagement rings featuring a colored gemstone stone ranging in a variety of colors. Popular gemstone options are sapphire and ruby.
Halo: Ring featuring a center stone that’s surrounded by a circle of stones. Engagement rings can have more than one halo, referred to as a double halo if two circles of gemstones encircle one center stone.
Hand-crafted: Ring that’s been made by hand instead of the casing process of filling a mold. It’s shaped by hand by the jeweler.
Pavé: Setting of stones where they’re placed close together so as to avoid seeing metal in between the stones.
Side Stones: Ring featuring a main stone and surrounded by smaller stones. Can also be referred to as a three-stone ring or a halo.
Solitaire: An engagement ring with a single, solitary center stone.
Tension set: Gemstone is held in place by metal on either side, thus creating tension.
Three-Stone: Ring featuring three stones, typically three diamonds or a diamond centered between two other stones. Known to celebrate a couple's past, present, and future together.
Unique shank: Engagement ring with an individualized lower part that goes around the finger, also known as a shank.
Vintage or Vintage-Inspired: These are classic-style engagement rings typically created, or modeled after, jewelry from the early 1900s or earlier. An antique engagement ring is technically defined as being over fifty years old.
14k gold: Made of 14 parts gold and 10 parts other metals or alloys.
18k gold: Made of 18 parts gold and 6 parts other metals.
24k gold: Pure gold. The softest gold, as gold gets softer the purer it is.
Alloy: A mixture of two or more metals mixed together.
Gold plated: Thin, almost microscopic layer of pure gold used to coat another type of metal.
Platinum: Precious metal with a silvery white color and shine.
Rose gold: An alloy of gold tinted with copper to create a rosy tone. The deeper the pink color, the more copper there is in the alloy.
White gold: Yellow gold mixed with a white alloy.
Yellow gold: The color of pure gold, yellow gold gets darker or changes color the more alloys are mixed with it.
Explore wedding bands at our Huntington Beach showroom, or browse a selection online here.
"Usually you only hear about customer's loyalty to a business, but never the other way around. This all changed with Affinity where for the first time, I experienced loyalty from a business I have patroned.
Per my previous review, my husband and I had a great experience buying both of our wedding bands here. Fast forward 4 years later and my husband's wedding ring slipped off his finger while surfing. I called them asking to re-order it, and they offered a discount due to the circumstances of the situation. I had no expectation of that, and was completely taken back at their thoughtfulness.
They had everything in our records, so re-ordering the ring was a breeze and completely stress free. I'm almost grateful for the experience of needing to re-order because I saw even more of their integrity and love for their customers and it blessed me so. It doesn't get any better than this folks!" — Grace B. on Yelp
Posted in Blog by: Ashley Stephens
Monday, June 15, 2020 3:19:00 AM America/Los_Angeles