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Only a few moments are as memorable and special as proposing to your fiancé-to-be. With a $10,000 budget, you’ll be able to buy a stunning engagement ring that will make your proposal and your future together even more incredible.
With $10,000 to spend on an engagement ring, you’ll be able to choose from a large variety of high-quality diamonds, including beautiful round and fancy shape diamonds in the 1.50+ carat range.
You’ll also be able to choose virtually any engagement ring setting, from a simple solitaire ring to ornate pavé, halo and side-stone rings with lots of extra diamonds.
Below, we’ve put together a full buyer’s guide to engagement rings in the $10,000 range. Our guide covers everything from where to shop to the best diamonds and settings to choose from within this budget.
If your budget is below $10,000 — for example, $7,500 or $8,000 — the recommendations and tips below still apply, although you’ll need to slightly downsize your choice of diamond to avoid going over your budget.
Before we get into the specifics of buying a $10,000 engagement ring, let’s take a look at what you can expect to buy with this budget.
$10,000 is quite a generous budget for an engagement ring. It’s certainly much more than the median amount spent on an engagement ring, which, according to the NY Times, is generally less than $3,000.
With an above-average budget, you’ll be able to afford a beautiful, impressive engagement ring that will stand out from the crowd.
For example, with $10,000 to spend, you can afford an engagement ring similar to this beautiful 1.55 carat round cut halo engagement ring in 18k white gold from James Allen.
Or this stunning 1.78 carat princess cut channel platinum engagement ring from James Allen, which has a large and eye-catching center diamond that’s made even more impressive by the pavé setting.
If you’re a fan of solitaire engagement rings with large diamonds, you could also choose a ring like this stunning 2.00 carat round cut diamond ring in 18K Yellow Gold from James Allen.
In short, you’ll have no problems affording a beautiful, elegant engagement ring with a $10,000 budget.
However, with this said, it’s still important to shop for an engagement ring strategically to make sure you get the best deal.
For example, if you buy your engagement ring from a brick-and-mortar jewelry store, you’ll end with a ring that’s significantly lower in quality than the examples above. The same is also true if you buy an “off-the-shelf” ring, rather than choosing a loose diamond and setting separately.
We’ve explained the reasoning behind this, as well as what you can do to get the highest quality engagement ring for your budget, in more detail below.
To get the best quality engagement ring for $10,000 (or a similar amount), we recommend that you purchase online. In fact, we strongly recommend considering online diamond jewelry vendors.
The reason for this is that you’ll end up with a much higher quality engagement ring than you’d be able to purchase for the same price from a brick-and-mortar jewelry store.
As we’ve covered in our guide to the evolution of the diamond industry, e-commerce has had a huge impact on the diamond jewelry market. Because it’s so much less expensive for a jewelry business to operate online, online vendors are able to offer significantly lower prices.
For example, we’ve secret shopped from and reviewed countless diamond jewelers around the world. In our experience, brick-and-mortar jewelry stores typically charge anywhere from 30% to 100+% more than reputable online vendors, all for diamonds of identical quality.
Now, this doesn’t mean that brick-and-mortar jewelers are greedy or deliberately trying to make customers pay too much. Instead, it’s just a simple reality of modern business. Thanks to lower operating costs and a much more efficient business model, online vendors simply offer a better deal for you as a consumer.
We recommend buying from James Allen or Blue Nile. As we’ve explained in more detail at the bottom of this guide, both of these vendors offer high quality, GIA and AGS-certified diamonds, with highly competitive pricing and the best customer service in the industry.
A lot of diamond engagement ring vendors offer a range of pre-made, off-the-shelf engagement rings.
These rings are already put together and save you the trouble of picking a diamond and setting separately. As a general rule, they’re best avoided, as you’ll be able to get a significantly better deal (and a higher quality engagement ring) by selecting your own diamond and setting.
This is easy to do with James Allen or Blue Nile, as both of these vendors provide easy-to-use online engagement ring builders. If you need help, you can contact us and we’ll help you select the best diamond and setting for your budget and tastes.
As a non-expert, buying a diamond can be an incredibly confusing process. Luckily, it becomes significantly easier once you’re familiar with the key factors that affect a diamond’s quality, value and appearance.
Before you choose any engagement ring, we recommend reviewing our guides to the four Cs of diamonds:
As we’ve explained in our guide to buying a diamond, we don’t recommend choosing a stone that’s perfect in every category. Instead, the smartest approach is to put most of your budget towards the factors that have the biggest impact on the diamond’s appearance.
Before they go on sale, diamonds are graded and certified by a gemological lab. These labs look at the diamond’s under bright lighting and magnification, then grade each stone for cut, color, clarity, fluorescence and other characteristics that affect its appearance and value.
Not all of these labs are equally strict in how they grade diamonds. For example, some labs, such as the IGI (International Gemological Institute), have looser standards for the diamonds they grade, resulting in inflated grades for factors like color and clarity.
We recommend only buying diamonds that come with a certificate from either the GIA or the AGS. As we’ve explained in our full guide to diamond certification, these labs provide grading that’s consistent, reliable and trustworthy, letting you objectively compare diamonds.
With a budget of $10,000 to spend on an engagement ring, you have several options. You can:
We’ve listed each of these options, along with our recommendations and example engagement rings, below.
Solitaire engagement rings are simple and elegant, with a design that draws all attention to the center stone. They’re also the most affordable settings, allowing you to set aside more of your budget for a large, beautiful diamond.
Most solitaire settings are priced in the $200 to $1,200 range, leaving you with anywhere from $8,800 to $9,800 to spend on a diamond. Options include:
Choosing a solitaire engagement ring is a great option if you want the focus to be on the center diamond, rather than the setting itself. With a solitaire setting, you’ll be able to afford any of the diamonds below while staying within or close to your $10,000 budget:
Certain fancy shape diamonds can appear larger to the eye than round diamonds of the same carat weight, making them worth considering if you’re looking for a diamond that’s going to stand out due to its perceived size.
Halo settings, which feature a halo of small diamonds around the center stone, are a popular choice for engagement rings in the $10,000 price range. A beautiful halo setting can make the center diamond look larger than it really is at a lower cost than a higher carat weight stone.
Most halo settings range in price from $800 to $5,000+, leaving you with between $9,200 and $5,000 to spend on a diamond. Options include:
Paired with a center diamond such as this 1.31 carat, H color, SI1 round diamond from James Allen for $8,240 or this 1.60 carat, H color, VS2 clarity cushion cut diamond from Blue Nile for $7,276, any of the above settings will give you a stunning halo engagement ring for under $10,000.
Pavé settings, which feature small, pavé-set diamonds along the band of the ring, are another great option for adding extra sparkle to your fiancé-to-be’s engagement ring. Options include:
We highly recommend buying your engagement ring from a reputable online diamond jewelry vendor like James Allen or Blue Nile. If you’re searching for an exceptionally well-cut diamond, you may also wish to look at Brian Gavin Diamonds.
One of the largest online diamond vendors, James Allen offers a large selection of high-quality GIA and AGS-certified diamonds, as well as a diverse range of settings. Their prices are some of the best in the business and their customer service is excellent.
James Allen provides a 30-day return policy and lifetime warranty. You can learn more about the company and the experience of buying a diamond engagement ring from James Allen in our full James Allen review.
Another excellent option, Blue Nile has a vast inventory of loose diamonds in all sizes and price ranges. Their selection of settings is also amazing. Like James Allen, Blue Nile offers excellent customer service and extremely competitive pricing.
Engagement rings from Blue Nile come with a 30-day return policy and a lifetime warranty. You can learn more about Blue Nile in our full Blue Nile review.
Brian Gavin Diamonds specializes in exceptionally well-cut diamonds, making this a good option if you’re looking for a diamond with incredible brilliance. Our full review of Brian Gavin Diamonds goes into more detail on BGD’s strengths and unique advantages over other vendors.
With a $10,000 engagement ring budget, you’ll be able to buy a stunning diamond and equally beautiful setting that’s sure to impress your fiancé-to-be.
As we explained above, in this price range, you have a large range of options. You can go for a large diamond with a simple solitaire setting, or opt for a slightly smaller center stone paired with a beautiful pavé or halo engagement ring.
To get the best deal, follow our buying recommendations above. If you need help with choosing the right diamond, setting or anything else, feel free to contact us and we’ll help you choose the best engagement ring for your tastes and budget.
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