Everyone has different requirements when it comes to purchasing their engagement ring. Some might prioritize the carat while others are less concerned about size and more focused on the overall design. They may want a sapphire instead of a diamond or ditch the center stone altogether in favor of a simple band. With so many different perspectives on the topic, it’s no wonder the engagement ring trends for 2023 vary widely.
“An engagement ring is so personal and something that most people will wear every day, so typically they will look for something that matches their personal style,” says entrepreneur and fashion authority Rachel Zoe to TZR. “Recently, too, engagement ring shoppers are becoming more interested in every detail of their purchase. They aren’t only looking at the design of the ring, but also the diamond’s quality and most importantly, how their purchase can impact the environment.”
Since no two people or opinions are alike, upcoming ring trends run the gamut, ranging from lab grown diamonds and rare antique cuts — if you want an old school feel to your bauble — to setting a diamond in an unexpected bezel design or on a wavy band. “The trend for customization is evolving within engagement rings,” shares Sarah Spada, co-founder of LEEADA Jewelry. “Adding in details that are unique and expressive of your relationship is becoming as important as the stone you choose.”
Jump ahead to see what brides-to-be are looking for in their engagement rings, and let the various styles inspire your own shopping journey.
For those unfamiliar with bezel settings, this style consists of a thin metal rim surrounding the outside of a stone, thereby protecting all of its sides. This is a great setting to consider if you want a more delicate gem, like an emerald, in your engagement ring.
“We are seeing more couples opt for either a full bezel or half bezel setting for their diamond engagement rings,” says Olivia Landau, founder of The Clear Cut. “The bezel setting offers a sleek and modern twist to a traditional solitaire ring. We see bezel settings on mostly geometric shapes like emerald cuts, asscher cuts, and radiant cut diamonds. However, we are also increasingly seeing more cushion cuts and ovals being set in bezels.”
Should your taste and personality skew towards the unconventional, you may love the idea of an inky black diamond. “Engagement ring gemstone choices are evolving beyond the traditional white sparkler,” says Spada. “Black diamonds, sapphires, and emeralds are only a few of the non-traditional gemstones we’ve seen lately.” Additionally, fine jewelry designer Anna Sheffield emphasizes that “there is a strong resurgence for black diamonds used in ceremonial styles, along with deep blues and other moody tones like gray spinel.”
Antique Cut Diamonds
An engagement ring trend, echoed by almost every jewelry designer TZR spoke to, is the antique cut diamond. Stones fall into this category if they were mined and hand cut anywhere between the 1300s and the 1930s. Thus, no two pieces are alike, which gives brides that extra bit of uniqueness in their ring. (Antique cuts include old mine, old Euro, and rose cut.)
“Anyone in the bridal and diamond world will tell you that the hottest and most difficult diamond cut to get on the market right now is the old mine cut,” says jewelry designer Ashley Zhang. “These stones are so rare that our customers can spend months trying to locate the perfect diamond.” “Antique cut stones [also] offer a unique faceting pattern that has steadily gained popularity in 2022 and we see this continuing to be strong in 2023,” adds Lauren Forbes, director of diamond and gemstones at Valerie Madison.
For those who want a taste of the Victorian era, Sam Broekema, editor-in-chief of Only Natural Diamonds, says that a personal favorite is the rose cut. “Each rose cut diamond’s shape is unique as there is not a specific number of facets required, but the flat base and faceted domed top creates a softer sparkle for an understated bride-to-be. A gorgeous example [of this style] is the ring sported by Lily Collins.”
Spotlighting The Setting
More brides are choosing to go with a unique or unexpected setting for their diamond. “Focusing exclusively on the center stone is a thing of the past,” says fine jewelry designer Arielle Ratner. “Settings with personality and a higher level of design are in. My clients are looking for a fully designed ‘piece’ that also encompasses a beautiful stone.”
The aforementioned bezel setting can give brides that different eye-catching element, but Brooklyn-based jeweler Lorraine West adds that brides should also consider “curved and wave-like band (shank) shapes, along with off-set gemstone settings.” Another way to make your setting stand out, too, is by focusing on negative space as seen in the rings, below. “This layout allows the center diamond to be prominent while incorporating a fresh design aesthetic,” says Zahava Ryzman, founder and creative director of Sarah Chloe Jewelry. “We love this unexpected approach.”
Why have one diamond or gemstone on a band when you can have two or three? “The number of stones per ring seems to continue to increase [each year]. We’re moving away from Toi et Moi styles to designs with three or more gems on a single ring,” says LA-based jewelry designer Grace Lee.
At Greenwich St. Jewelers in New York City, co-owner Jennifer Gandia echoes this sentiment and says their customers gravitate towards asymmetrical cluster rings. Gandia shares: “Styles like our Mulberry, which feature a larger diamond clustered with smaller stones make an impression due to their unique design and they can also appear larger than single stone rings. This modern take on a classic style could also appeal to younger couples looking for nostalgic designs they can make their own.”
Not everyone wants a diamond as their center stone and an emerald, thanks to its vibrant green shade, is often a favorite with brides who want color in their engagement ring. “I’ve been seeing a lot of emerald bezel set rings as a trend for engagement rings,” says Yi Guo, founder of Yi Collection. “Many people know that emeralds need more love and care than sapphires or diamonds [because they’re softer], so brides are opting for a bezel setting that not only protects the gemstone, but is also a very modern and graphic design.”
Additionally, for those who don’t want an emerald as the center look, designer Sarah Ysabel Dyne-Narici shares that she sees more requests from brides to include them on bands or as a side stone to a diamond. “The beloved crisp green hue of emeralds is a gorgeous contrast to a diamond’s clarity and sparkle, so it’s no surprise the combo is so popular,” adds Gandia. “[Also, for something fun] legend has it that emeralds are a revealer of truths, reputedly cutting through all illusions and spells, including the truth or falsity of a lover’s oath.”
If you can’t decide between yellow gold or platinum in your engagement ring, you can do both! “We are seeing a huge trend in mixed metal settings,” says Zhang. “Setting your diamonds in a white metal like platinum really allows them to pop against a yellow gold band. This also opens up your ability to stack different colored jewelry [with your engagement ring] for the ultimate bridal set.”
For those who are buying their ring with sustainability in mind, you’ll want to check out lab-grown diamonds. “Recently, people are becoming more concerned with how their purchases impact the environment,” says Zoe. “[In addition to the four Cs, there’s a fifth C]: climate neutrality. This is one of the reasons I love Oscar Massin’s Liberté engagement rings. Their Latitude lab-grown diamonds achieve 100% climate neutrality and a net zero carbon footprint.”
Mens Engagement Rings
Every love story is different and couples are seeking out ways to buy rings that are unique and personal to them. “We’re seeing more and more couples adjust the traditional script of proposals to fit their own love story, with men more often proudly wearing engagement rings,” shares Forbes. “This flipped script of men receiving a sentimental piece to wear ahead of a wedding stems from LGBTQ+ couples and we’re thrilled to see heterosexual couples follow their lead. We’ve sold an increasing number of diamond and gem ‘mangagement rings’ and look forward to designing even more next year.”