Written By: Vahid Moradi
Engagements and weddings across the world come with all kinds of traditions. If you’re planning to become engaged, however, you have the opportunity to craft a wedding that’s truly you, regardless of any rules—and that includes the style of your engagement ring. From choosing the center diamond shape and setting to the metal and diamond band, you can create a classic and unique engagement ring that's a symbol of your love.
Rather than the filigreed, fancy rings of our grandparents, many couples these days are eschewing expectations around ring size in favor of more elegant, minimalist designs.
If you’re curious about rings that often understated sleekness without too much flashy ado, we have plenty of options that may inspire your search. Below, we’ll highlight some of our favorite designs for minimalist engagement rings and share a few ideas on how to choose one.
#1 The Timeless Halo Ring
If you’d call yourself a minimalist but still like to let plenty of color and sparkle into your life, you can still have both with a minimalist engagement ring. A gorgeous tradition-inspired halo diamond engagement ring features a center stone encircled by additional smaller stones for added understated appeal.
A halo ring works wonderfully with a plain band, or it can be dressed up with more diamonds or stones that frame the finger with added sparkle.
An example of a lustrous design with an unadorned band is the Purple Sapphire Diamond Halo Ring, which is crafted with 18k white gold and contains an uncommon purple sapphire. This minimalist ring offers the best of both worlds for those looking for a bit of unique flair without overdoing the presentation.
#2 The Elegant Three-Stone Ring
While some minimalist engagement rings can be understated, others can stand out even more due to their unobscured beauty. This is the case for the three-stone ring—a multi-pronged ring with an array of angles, featuring a center stone flanked by two others mounted on the band.
There are many ways to interpret the significance of the three stones, including:
- The past, future, and present of a marriage or relationship
- Friendship, love, and commitment
- Religious and spiritual meanings
More recently, this engagement ring setting has gained popularity thanks to the fact that Meghan Markle received a three-stone ring for her engagement.1 For those looking for a special statement piece that contains deeper, personal meanings, this ring is sure to create an impact.
One of our favorites is the Platinum 1.75ct Emerald Cut Three Stone Diamond Ring, which features a dazzling, thick-cut platinum band. Despite the band’s thickness, the ring maintains a delicate feel through the soft shoulders nestling against the emerald cut diamonds. Featuring a larger center diamond with an accompanying small stone on each side, this diamond engagement ring holds a classic style.
#3 The Classic Bezel Set Ring
Want a ring that wows with its sleek, simple style, but sacrifices none of the security a more traditional engagement ring design offers? A bezel setting gives you both a touch of sophistication and peace of mind.
Bezel set rings are a type of ring that keeps the stone securely fastened inside a band made of metal and sometimes mounted with additional stones.
This construction gives the classic engagement ring a streamlined, modern appearance while providing the durability that other styles cannot achieve. For this reason, bezel set rings have a lot to offer for young newlyweds or those who wear their ring when traveling.
A favorite ring in this style is the Endless Love 1ct Diamond Ring. With its small diamonds dotting the circumference of the ring, this piece truly makes a statement. In addition, the 18k white gold band contains a bezel-set 1.20ct rectangular diamond that is deceptively minimal.
#4 Subtly Surprising Shank Rings
Unlike traditional rings that make use of a single band, shank rings—or “split shank” rings, as they are commonly known—feature a slightly more complex design. In this ring, the band is made of two branches that split at the base of the ring. These pieces often intertwine or wrap in ways that create surprising texture around the finger.
Depending on how they are adorned, shank rings can either appear sleek and modern or like relics from another time. Whether or not it features excess stones, this ring type is versatile and complements a wide array of personal styles.
One breathtakingly minimalist example of this kind of ring is our Diamond Open Ring with Split Shank, which is available in both 18k white and yellow gold. Its 50 round brilliant cut diamonds and 2 baguette diamonds create a stunning composition on the hand.
#5 The Stunning Solitaire Ring
If you’re truly aiming to pare down your ring design, you’ll want to consider the individual elements on their own—band and stone. With these essentials in mind, one minimalist ring that can stand out the most is a stunning solitaire engagement ring.
With no other stones or design elements to detract from your ring’s sparkle, this stone lets the eye focus on its sole centerpiece: the solitaire-cut diamond.
While you can find many band options for solitaire rings, we adore the sleek platinum band of this 1.01ct Diamond Ring. The highly reflective surface of platinum creates the perfect stage for the diamond. While this ring style is “pared-down” in design, it certainly loses none of the eye-catching power when paired with a quality stone.
Why Choose a Minimalist Engagement Ring?
If you’re weighing your options between minimalist rings and their alternatives, it can help to go back to the engagement ring roots.
In the late 1940s, De Beers launched a marketing campaign around the words “A diamond is forever.”2 Not only did their promotional efforts take off, but they also began to foster a connection between diamonds and everlasting love in the imagination of many Americans.
As time went on, engagement rings grew in elaboration and size, in part thanks to the tastes of celebrities eager to show off their wealth through jewelry.3 Endless different styles of engagement rings are available now for every woman and taste.
Despite this trend, not everyone expects or hopes to wear an over-the-top engagement ring. In fact, there are many reasons why some may choose a minimalist engagement ring, such as:
- Personal style – For those who prefer clothing that features clean lines and uncomplicated sophistication, a splashy ring may disrupt continuity with the rest of their look. Choose a simple engagement ring that’s timeless for you.
- Attention – Some like sporting a rock so big it catches any and everyone’s eye. Then there are those who aren’t interested in talking about their ring all the time. When choosing an engagement ring, be sure to take into account the personality of the wearer.
- Simplicity – Paring back excess ornamentation in jewelry allows the most important elements of the piece to truly shine. This is something to think about if you’re considering a ring that features a particularly beautiful or meaningful stone. Since diamonds are forever, a classic yet simple engagement ring can last for all trends to come.
While looking over your ring options, try imagining them how each would be perceived by the intended wearer. Will the stone speak to them? Does the band match their other jewelry? Attempting to visualize the piece on their finger (or yours) might help you better understand what ring to eventually go for.
How to Shop for a Minimalist Engagement Ring
If you’re taking in the diverse options above and feeling a little lost, we urge you not to worry. There are many ways to narrow down the choosing process and clear space in your head for the actual moment of proposal.
One option is to work with your partner to pick the perfect ring. While relying on the recipient to guide your hand (or trusting your partner to choose one) might feel like it takes away the element of surprise, many couples these days prefer to make this choice together.
In fact, 62% of couples go engagement shopping together.4 You can also recruit help from your trusted circle of confidants or tap one of your partner’s close friends or siblings for some helpful hints. They may have insider information (or access to a secret Pinterest board) that can help to guide your decision.
Finally, we would be remiss in discussing engagement rings without at least mentioning the issue of price.
Here, we urge you to do away with the old “three months’ salary” rule of thumb. Few, if any, still use this antiquated idea when picking out a ring. Your budget may range higher or lower than the parameter offered, and we think it’s a good idea to discard it.
Ultimately, the right ring is the one that suits both your budget and your style. With this goal in mind, you and your spouse-to-be will be set for ring-shopping success.
Find the Perfect Minimalist Ring with CJ Charles
When it comes to how to choose an engagement ring style, factors like price, cultural expectations, and current trends can make the process puzzling. The size of the ring may be important to some. However, many couples these days are looking for a sleeker, less ornate design that contains plenty of personal significance without too much excess embellishment.
A minimalist ring offers versatility when paired with a range of clothing, hair, and makeup styles, and allows the wearer to express their unique sensibility with confidence and understated flair. A minimalist and classic engagement ring style is also one that doesn't come and go with trends.
If you’re seeking a special ring that shows off your style subtly while symbolizing the commitment that you have made, CJ Charles can help you find the perfect piece.
Contact us through our website by using the chat feature, or visit our San Diego showroom to look at our selection of extraordinary and impressive collection of engagement rings in person.
Written By: Vahid Moradi
Vahid Moradi’s lifelong passion, dedication, and commitment for the jewelry industry led him to become the respected owner of CJ Charles Jewelers in 1988. From that moment, Moradi’s single focus in business was to become recognized as the pinnacle of value and world-class quality in the his Community. Over 34 years later, CJ Charles continues to grow and thrive as a successful, family-owned business that consistently provides exceptional service to all their clientele.
- Brides. Meghan Markle's Engagement Ring: Everything You Need to Know. https://www.brides.com/story/meghan-markle-engagement-ring
- Elle. The Evolution Of Engagement Rings Through The Years. https://www.elle.com/fashion/accessories/g32710699/engagement-rings-history/?slide=13
- Wedding Wire. The Most Expensive Celebrity Engagement Rings of All Time. https://www.weddingwire.com/wedding-ideas/celebrity-engagement-rings
- Brides. Engagement Ring Etiquette You Need to Know. https://www.brides.com/story/engagement-ring-etiquette-questions-answers
- The History Press. A brief history of signet rings. https://www.thehistorypress.co.uk/articles/a-brief-history-of-signet-rings/