How much should I spend on an engagement ring?

If we had £1 for answering how much you should spend on an engagement ring, we’d be able to buy quite a sizeable diamond for ourselves!

The answer we give people however is always the same – it’s personal to the individual buying the ring.

To help you with your purchase, below we demystify the myths regarding buying engagement rings and give our hints and tips on how to get the perfect ring for your budget.

2-3 Months Salary? ✘

diamond engagement ring cost
Credit: Debeers

Let’s answer the most common question: how much should you spend on an engagement ring? The suggestion that you should spend 2 or 3 months’ salary on the price of an engagement ring for men or women has been thrown around for decades and is nothing but good marketing.

It was originally part of a marketing campaign by diamond mining company, Debeers who declared “2 months’ salary showed the future Mrs Smith what the future will be like” before another asked, “how can you make two months’ salary last forever?” with both plastered directly next to a photograph of a diamond engagement ring.

Whilst this campaign was hugely successful and enabled the world to see the beauty of this magnificent natural gemstone, it did not really take off. In today’s money based on average salaries, it would suggest that in the UK, you should be spending approximately £6k on an engagement ring – something that is far from the average suggested by insurance company, Protect Your Bubble who said in 2018, the figure was actually £1,485 for an engagement ring.

At Purely Diamonds, from talking with our customers, we find most people spend between 3 and 6 weeks’ salary instead – something that is much more affordable when popping the question.

Buying Online is Cheaper? ✔

diamond engagement ring avarage price

Online retail has always had a reputation of being cheaper than physical stores on the high street, and engagement, wedding or eternity ring shopping is no exception to this rule. With the running costs of a fancy shop front, it’s easy to see why prices are more expensive on the high street; however the ideal compromise is a showroom experience.

A trip to our website or showroom enables you to find an engagement ring with a transparent cost and fast delivery. Selecting a ring design that is made to order enables you to not only have input in the quality of diamonds used, but it means as a company, we are not sitting on endless stock, which in turn costs money. That way, we pass our savings directly to you meaning our prices are up to 70% cheaper than the high street.

Furthermore, the beauty of knowing your chosen engagement ring was made just for you adds to the magic of your diamond jewellery journey.

Second Hand is Better Value? ✘

vintage engagent rings

Sometimes, a family heirloom is handed down that enables you to propose and gift a beautiful piece of family history and heritage for your proposal, saving you the expense of buying a ring. If you’re not lucky enough to have a few rings floating around, it is often assumed that buying a second hand or vintage engagement ring will be a more cost effective way of engagement ring shopping.

Unfortunately however, this often is not the case. The quality of more vintage jewellery is usually much lower than a diamond sourced and polished in the last 10 years and the strict grading that takes place today guarantees that you know the quality of diamond or gemstone like diamond ring sapphire that you’re paying for. The fact that jewellery styles of years gone by remain popular will ensure that if you’re looking for a vintage inspired design, you’re still able to purchase that today, but with a diamond that is certified for your own piece of mind.

Interest Free Purchase? ✔

The price of an engagement ring is always relative to the person purchasing it and whether you’re spending £1,000 or £10,000 it’s still a substantial purchase. It’s for that reason that we offer finance for all purchases in the UK over £500.

When splitting payments over 6, 9 or 12 months, you can enjoy interest free repayments, whilst finance plans over 36 and 48 months are at 14.9% APR. A deposit of 10% is required, but if you wish you can pay as much as 60% upfront when purchasing your engagement ring and split the remaining balance over the payment plan of your choice.

We find that many customers opt for paying for their engagement rings via finance because spreading the cost can enable a more comfortable purchase.

Tips for your engagement ring budget:

  • Be realistic before you start shopping, set yourself a price range that you can afford and then the flexibility of our diamond size, quality options, and metal type 18k gold or platinum, will enable you to match your chosen ring design with your budget.
  • Familiarise yourself with the starting prices of the different diamond carat weights to ensure a practical purchase. Starting prices for a round diamond engagement rings are as follows:
Carat WeightPrice
Prices correct as of August 2023. Check our website for most up to date prices. Prices based on H, Colour SI1 Natural Diamonds
  • Our engagement rings start under £500, so we know we’ll be able to help all budgets, if you’re unsure of what ring style or diamond quality to go for, then contact our sales team on 0207 837 2964 or book a visit to one of our showrooms.