Buying an engagement ring is a huge decision and is arguably one of the most important purchases you can ever make.  It can also be a very confusing purchase if you don't have the right information. Especially for a purchase this costly, it's important to feel confident in what you're buying.

You don't need to learn every nuance of jewelry and jewelry costs to get a general idea of what things cost and the reasons why they cost what they do. A basic understanding of the components of a beautiful engagement ring, will get you far.

Simply stated, engagement rings will have prices that scale upwards based on a few factors.  Total carat weight of the diamonds, shape of the center stone, color, clarity and cut grades of the diamonds, precious metal quality and complexity of the design of the ring are all factors that play a part in the final cost of an engagement ring.

One practical thing to know before you start shopping is whether or not your recipient has any allergies.  10 karat, 14 karat and even 18 karat white gold uses nickel as an alloy, so a nickel allergy usually necessitates the purchase of a palladium or platinum engagement ring if you want a white metal choice for your engagement ring.

Considering the recipient's favored diamond shape is a factor as well.  The round brilliant is by far the most popular shape for engagement ring center stones, so it is always a winner if you don't know of a diamond shape that she specifically favors.

Another detail is to pay attention to ring styles that she may like.  A great way to scope out engagement ring styles she may have her eye on is to check her social media pages for rings she may have seen and liked. Personal preferences aside, lifestyle is another important factor in the purchase of an engagement ring also.  Some ring styles are more delicate than others, so more active lifestyles aren't always suited to fragile styles such as halos for example. Also, the larger the center stone, the higher the stone will sit in its setting. The taller the setting, the more vulnerable the engagement ring will be to catching on things or hitting things.

When you consider all of these factors when buying an engagement ring, you'll be sure to make a great buying decision. In addition to an awareness of these factors, selecting a jeweler you trust to provide you with clear answers to questions that you may have along the way is a great help too.