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The Best Places to Buy Engagement Rings

A review of the top rated online engagement ring retailers

By Mike Fried,

Buying an engagement ring is often one of the first major purchases in a person’s life. The process can be fraught with tension as there are so many factors to consider. Even if you purchase from our top overall store, James Allen, there are still so many factors to consider (shape, color, clarity, budget, ring style, etc…) But working with a trusted vendor who is there to help you along the way can make all the difference.

I am a diamond expert. Since 2002, I have bought and sold diamonds from New York and Tel Aviv to Mumbai and Dubai. Over the last twelve years, I have secretly shopped hundreds of engagement ring retailers, including, of course, the recommended vendors in this list. We make sure to visit the larger retailers multiple times (in different locations) to make sure we have the broadest and most accurate information for you, our readers. In the process, we’ve come across several diamond engagement ring vendors that consistently outperform the competition.

Commitment to Accuracy and Relevance

We understand that you rely on our reviews to make informed decisions. Your trust is important to us, and that’s why we’re committed to ensuring that the information we provide is both accurate and up-to-date.

Our dedicated team continuously scrutinizes each and every review on our platform. We regularly update our content to reflect any changes or new insights, so you can always count on us for relevant and trustworthy recommendations.

We are confident that all the reviews and recommendations on our site meet our rigorous standards for accuracy and relevance.

Our Top Engagement Ring Retailer Picks:

For the best niche engagement rings read below.

To help you with the diamond buying process we lean on our expertise and experience. The author of this article, our CEO, Mike Fried has over 20 years of experience in the diamond industry. Mike started from the bottom, sorting and evaluating hundreds of thousands of diamonds to learn every facet (pun intended) of diamond quality and value. Mike followed that up by spending years buying and selling diamonds on the wholesale market as well as selling tens of millions of dollars worth of diamonds to diamond retailers.

Best Place to Buy Engagement Ring

The following online jewelry stores are, in our opinion, the best options for anyone who is in the market for a diamond engagement ring – whether you’re after a classic solitaire affordable engagement ring, a rare or high-priced diamond, fancy colored diamonds, lab-created diamonds, and everything in between.

Best Overall for all Engagement Rings

James Allen: Largest selection and best customer service

James Allen Online Shopping Experience

Overall rating: 5/5 | Selection: 5/5 | Price/Value: 5/5 | Customer Service: 24/7  | Return policy and warranty: 30-day 100% returns and lifetime warranty | Financing: Yes

This one is a no-brainer. We have loved James Allen for years, and they are one of the industry leaders. Their customer service is fantastic, and they offer all the necessary tools to buy a diamond and engagement ring online. For example, James Allen recently introduced an easy-to-use Ring Studio which, according to National Jeweler, was “…an enjoyable process from start to finish.” 

Our Experience With James Allen: Not only have I secret-shopped James Allen online as well as in their showroom, but we have also personally helped countless readers purchase their engagement rings from them. Their website is very easy to use, they have a phenomenal selection of setting styles to choose from, and their pricing on diamonds is very competitive. 

James Allen has an incredible array of diamonds to choose from, both natural and lab-grown. You can find the perfect color, clarity, and cut combination to get the most bang for your buck. They have an ample inventory of GIA-certified diamonds, and their diamond videos are second to none.

What our Readers Say About James Allen: Our readers have given us phenomenal feedback about their James Allen experience. Here are a couple of excerpts from our Trust Pilot reviews:

“I saved over 30,000 dollars by buying from James Allen vs The little blue box (Tiffany) store for a better quality diamond.”

“We ended up buying a loose diamond from James Allen. We felt that we got very good value for our money.”

Pros:

  • Top notch photos and videos
  • Excellent customer service
  • Largest selection of natural and lab grown diamonds
  • Fantastic return and warranty policy

Cons:

  • Limited selection of fashion jewelry
  • Lack of physical showrooms outside of NYC

Selected James Allen Diamonds:

Ringo Approved Eye Clean Diamonds

What is Ringo?

See our full review of James Allen for more info.

Best Overall Runner Up

Blue Nile: The pioneer of online diamond shopping

Online diamond engagement ring shopping and Blue Nile have been synonymous for years. They literally built the market. They were the first company to develop the concept of removing all middlemen and virtually listing loose diamonds direct from the manufacturers so that you can build and buy engagement rings online.

My last secret shopping trip to Blue Nile was in October 2022. I was in town and purchased their Scatter V diamond necklace for my girlfriend. Not only was their online service fantastic, but I loved the experience of picking up the necklace at their Garden State Plaza location. 

I took the opportunity to secret shop their in-store experience, and it matched their already impressive online experience. You can read more about it in our blog post.

Blue Nile Online Shopping Experience

Overall rating: 4.5/5 | Selection: 4.5/5 | Price/Value: 4/5 | Customer Service: 24/7  | Return policy and warranty: 30-day 100% returns and lifetime warranty | Financing: Yes

Our Experience with Blue Nile: Our opinion of Blue Nile changed drastically around 2014. That was when Blue Nile added video technology on par with James Allen and was able to offer all the tools necessary to pick out the perfect diamond. We have secretly shopped them multiple times since then. Their customer chat is superb, and their website is very easy to use. In our opinion, they have the best selection of settings, and their offer of natural and lab-grown diamonds is very competitive. 

Mike Fried visiting Blue Nile
Mike Fried and Ira during Blue Nile visit

What our Readers Say About Blue Nile: Here are just a few reviews from our readers that loved Blue Nile:

“They (The Diamond Pro) recommended Blue Nile and I was very impressed with them. We chose a beautiful diamond ring and my fiance loved it.”

“Easy and great advice was received by the Blue Nile team. Loved the experience.”

Pros:

  • Excellent user experience on their website
  • Knowledgeable customer service
  • Competitive selection of natural and lab grown diamonds
  • Growing showroom network

Cons:

  • The imagery of settings is underwhelming
  • Not all diamonds have images

See our full Blue Nile review.

Best Boutique Experience for Engagement (Over $20,000)

Abe Mor: A true “upstairs” diamond wholesalers with personal attention

Abe Mor is an interesting option for people with a budget of $20,000 or more. They specialize in large and rare diamonds and are able to offer a fantastic experience for consumers looking to make a high-end purchase.

Abe Mor is one of the most well-respected “upstairs” diamond wholesalers in New York’s famous Diamond District. By “upstairs,” of course, I mean that they are not just a retail shop on the street level masquerading as a wholesale operation. They are the real thing. Everybody we have sent to Abe Mor has been blown away by the personal attention they have received, including from CEO Eric Mor – both on the phone and in person.

Example of Abe Mor diamond rings

Overall rating: 4.3/5 | Selection: 4/5 | Price/Value: 4.5/5 | Customer Service: Phone and email during regular business hours  | Financing: No

Our Experience with Abe Mor: We started our relationship with Abe Mor in 2018 for people that were looking to sell their diamond jewelry. They had a fantastic track record with our readers. I visited their offices and was blown away by their collection of larger diamonds. One of our readers was looking for a 5ct, $150,000, diamond ring in NYC and I suggested he speak with Abe Mor. He ended up with a stunning ring and the rest was history. Abe Mor does a great job sourcing higher end diamonds and works with incredible jewelry craftsmen to create truly unique pieces.

What our readers say about Abe Mor: Here are a couple of reviews on Yelp from our readers who purchased from Abe Mor.

“The other sources could not match the grade and quality of the Abe Mor stone for the same price. Save yourself a lot of time and start with Jan at Abe Mor, then check to see if anyone can beat them in quality, service, and price.

“She (Jan from Abe Mor) guided me the whole way and even provided a personal touch at the end with a story of how it all came to be, which I showed to my fiancé and she just loved it. Jan truly  made this process enjoyable and stress free. I was able to meet her in person, see the diamonds, and she never rushed my decision. My fiancé loved the ring and it looked exactly (I mean exactly!) like the photo I sent her. Five stars and I recommend anyone go to Jan and Abe Mor.”

Pros:

  • Wholesale prices on diamonds
  • Bespoke handcrafted settings
  • True diamond experts

Cons:

  • Not an option for budgets under $20,000
  • Not a full-fledged online retailer. Based in New York City

See the full Abe Mor review.

Best Super Ideal Cut Engagement Rings

Brian Gavin Diamonds: A master jewelry craftsman

Brian Gavin’s Signature and Black lines have been quite popular with a certain segment of our readers. For those readers who are hyper-focused on cut and looking to find a truly spectacular diamond in terms of brilliance, Brian Gavin Diamonds is the way to go.

Brian Gavin is one of the industry leaders when it comes to diamond cutting. Speaking honestly, his knowledge of cutting is far superior to mine. Their Signature and Black diamonds will be more brilliant than anything else you can find.

Brian Gavin  Online Online Experience

Overall rating: 4.3/5 | Selection: 4/5 | Price/Value: 4.5/5 | Customer Service: Phone and email during regular business hours  | Return policy and warranty: 15-day Inspection Period and lifetime warranty | Financing: No

BGD’s customer service and jewelry craftsmanship match the quality of their product. There is a premium for such high quality craftsmanship, and in Brian Gavin’s case, it’s 100% justified. That doesn’t mean it’s for everyone. Most of our readers prefer to go for the bigger diamond and sacrifice a bit on cut. But for those who want to make brilliance their target, Brian Gavin is the way to go.

Our Experience with Brian Gavin Diamonds: My experience with Brian Gavin goes back to my days working for a large diamond manufacturer. His unparalleled expertise in diamond cutting shows in their diamonds. Based on secret shopping as well as inspecting their diamond inventory at their office, I can say they have the most brilliant diamonds out there.

What Brian Gavin Customers Say: Here are a couple of comments from Brian Gavin reviews on Trust Pilot:

“The diamond has such amazing fire, brilliance, and sparkle. The delicate Simone setting compliments the stone beautifully. So happy we chose a Brian Gavin Hearts & Arrows cushion cut diamond to celebrate our wedding anniversary!”

“I recently bought an engagement ring and a wedding band from Brian Gavin Diamonds and I couldn’t have had a better experience.”

Pros:

  • Diamonds have superior fire and brilliance
  • High end setting styles
  • Excellent customer service

Cons:

  • You pay a premium for that brilliance
  • Limited setting selection

See our full Brian Gavin Diamonds review.

Best Fancy Color Diamond Engagement Rings

Leibish & Co: The fancy color diamond experts

If you’re considering non-standard options to really make your engagement ring stand out, a ring with a fancy colored diamond can be a great option.

Our go to company for fancy color diamonds is Leibish. They are the best. Period. End of story. They are one of the biggest purchasers at the Argyle auctions and have a stunning array of fancy color diamonds like black diamonds in all budget ranges.

Many of our readers have purchased diamonds and diamond jewelry from Leibish, and all of them have been ecstatic with the end result. Not only do they have an amazing selection of diamonds, but they are also the masters of building the jewelry piece around the diamond to bring out the color in the best way possible.

Leibish Online Shopping Experience

Overall rating: 4.3/5 | Selection: 4/5 | Price/Value: 4/5 | Customer Service: Phone and email during regular business hours  | Return policy and warranty: 30-day money-back guarantee, no questions asked and lifetime warranty | Financing: On select items

Our Experience with Leibish & Co: From the moment we started The Diamond Pro, I wanted to work with Leibish. As experts in the field, we appreciate Leibish’s unique standing as true fancy color diamond experts. Inspecting their collection of rare diamonds as well as their stunning jewelry has been a true delight.

What Leibish & Co Customers say: Here are some reviews from people who purchased from Leibish & Co.

“I came across Leibish & Co. via Pinterest, the yellow diamond rings are absolutely exquisite. So I knew that I had to select a piece and found a Petite Yellow Diamond Halo engagement ring. My wife loved it… Her smile was priceless!”

“I ended up with just such a piece. Ruby earrings with diamond surrounds. I dealt on the phone and through email with Dani and she was great. Super responsive, friendly, non-pushy, and all the other good things one would hope for.”

Pros:

  • Largest collection of Argyle pink diamonds
  • Expertise in creating jewelry pieces with fancy-colored diamonds

Cons:

  • Not a great option for white diamonds
  • Limited selection of diamonds (par for the course with incredibly rare diamonds)

See the full Leibish & Co. review.

Best Large Physical Engagement Ring Retail Chain

Jared

While we are clear that we think you are better off purchasing online, some of you prefer to go to a physical store. If you are part of that group, we’d recommend Jared.

According to Smartscrapers, Jared has 239 locations in the United States. So wherever you may be, there is likely a Jared nearby. In our most recent secret shopping of Jared, we were pleasantly surprised. All of their natural diamonds were GIA certified and their lab grown diamonds were IGI certified. We found the staff to be extremely knowledgeable. While the prices are higher than those from online vendors, they are still pretty good.

Best Regional Retail Engagement Ring Chain

Diamonds Direct

Diamonds Direct gives you more of an independent local jeweler vibe if that is what you are looking for. With 25 locations, mostly scattered around the south east and Texas, they still manage to have that local feel some consumers are comfortable with.

I have had the opportunity to secret shop Diamonds Direct in San Antonio, Dallas and Charlotte. I was blown away by the experiences. Stunning settings and fantastic personal service were consistent in all three locations.

Best Place To Buy Alternative Engagement Rings

Best gemstone engagement rings

Angara

Many of our readers want to stray from the traditional diamond engagement ring. They are looking for something a bit unconventional and more colorful. Whether it’s a dark blue sapphire, light blue topaz or the deep hue of a red Garnet, gemstones are an affordable alternative to a diamond engagement ring.

What is Angara known for?

Angara is the premier vendor of gemstones. Having been in the business for more than 15 years, they have developed a fantastic range of settings to go with the variety of gemstones they offer.

Angara Online Shopping Experience
Angara

Best moissanite engagement rings

Charles & Covard

Until lab-grown diamonds became popular, Moissanite was the only cheaper alternative to natural diamonds that looked similar to diamonds. They are still a popular option in the budget range of engagement rings. And there is no better place to find them than Charles & Covard.

What Charles & Covard is known for?

Charles & Covard is synonymous with moissanite. Not only are they the best place for you to buy a moissanite for your engagement ring, they are the best place for other moissanite retailers to purchase them. The majority of retailers that offer moissanite get them from Charles & Covard. You may as well cut out the middleman and go straight to the source.

Charles and Colvard Online Shopping Experience
Charles & Covard

Pro Tips:
Diamond color – When buying a diamond, focus on the HIJ color range. If you are using a halo setting, go with an H+ color diamond. For solitaires you can drop to a J. Find out here which color grade is best for your setting.

Diamond clarity – Use the high quality images/videos to pick a lower grade (SI) that is eye-clean. Once put in a setting you won’t tell the difference and its much better value. Check out our article explaining which clarity grade is best for you.

Diamond cut – Do not forget about cut. It is the most important facet of the diamond. The better the cut, the more it will sparkle. In this article we explain everything you need to know about diamond cut.

FAQs About best Place To Buy Engagement Ring

Where is the best place to buy engagement rings?

Buy your engagement ring somewhere that allows you to select the diamond separately from the setting and combines the two. Make sure they offer GIA certified diamonds and are able to see high-quality images/videos of the diamond.

Is it cheaper to buy engagement rings online?

Fundamentally a diamond engagement ring is cheaper from an online retailer than a physical store. In many ways, it is also a better consumer experience. We discuss this topic in our article here.
As quoted by Seth Rosen in in Nerdwallet “All other things being equal, you can get a better price if you buy a diamond online.”

Should my diamond engagement ring have a certificate?

If you have a center diamond in your engagement ring over 0.30ct, you absolutely must have a certificate. Preferably the certificate should be from the GIA laboratory. Find out more about diamond certification here.

What is a red flag when picking a jeweler?

Be wary of jewelers that have sales of 30% or more on their diamonds. Diamonds are commodities and are usually marked up less than that. If a jeweler is offering 50% off their diamonds, that means they were ripping people off before. That is not someone you should trust. Remember: If it’s too good to be true, it’s too good to be true.

Contact Our Experts For Assistance With Buying Engagement Rings Online

Of these top diamond engagement ring retailers, James Allen and Blue Nile are hard to beat. Both offer everything a customer needs to buy engagement rings online: broad selection of conflict free diamonds, low prices, and modern technology like high-quality imagery and 360 degree inspection tools. Both James Allen and Blue Nile also provide top-tier customer service, which contributes to a superb customer experience every time.

Other diamond engagement ring vendors we recommend are Brian Gavin Diamonds, Abe Mor and Leibish & Co. These retailers each offer special expertise and specialize in specific areas. Brian Gavin is one of the best diamond retailers for high-quality diamond cuts. Abe Mor is the best for high-quality, rare and expensive diamonds, while Leibish & Co is the number one fancy colored diamond vendor.

Now you know what places we think have the best service and quality and you can start engagement ring shopping on their sites. And if you need some guidance on how to choose a perfect diamond and buy an engagement ring you can check out our useful tips or contact us directly and one of our diamond experts will be happy to answer your questions.

James Allen James Allen is the leader in online diamond sales. Their imaging technology is the same as inspecting a diamond with a jeweler's loupe. They have the largest exclusive loose diamond inventory online and fantastic prices. They also have the nicest collection of lab-created diamonds online.
What we love about them:
  • No questions asked returns within 30 days of shipment. James Allen will send you a paid shipping label to return the ring.
  • Lifetime Warranty
  • Free International Shipping
  • Free prong tightening, repolishing, rhodium plating and cleaning every 6 months
  • Provide insurance appraisals
  • One free resizing within 60 days of purchase
  • Free ring inscriptions
  • Best-in-class high quality imagery of all diamonds in stock
  • 24/7 Customer Service
  • Best-in-class packaging
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Blue Nile Blue Nile is the largest and most well-known internet jewelry seller. They have a very large exclusive online inventory. Their high-quality images are catching up to James Allens' and their prices are amazing. 
What we love about them:
  • No questions asked returns within 30 days of shipment. Blue Nile will send you a paid shipping label to return the ring.
  • Lifetime Warranty
  • Free Shipping
  • Free prong tightening, repolishing, rhodium plating and cleaning every 6 months
  • Provide insurance appraisal
  • One free resizing within the first year of purchase
  • High quality images of about half of their diamonds
  • 24/7 Customer Service
  • 100% credit towards future upgrades (must be at least double in value)
  • Best in class fulfillment
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About the author

Mike Fried Mike Fried Mike Fried has over 25 years experience in the diamond industry working with Leo Schachter Diamonds, Moshe Namdar Diamonds, and joining The Diamond Pro in 2007. He is recognized as an industry expert and has been quoted in publications such as Us, People, Page Six, The Next Web and more.

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