The Diamond Pro

Q&A: Choosing a Round or Cushion Cut Diamond for a Platinum Ring With $5,500 Total Budget

The following is a real email conversation between The Diamond Pro and a reader just like you who contacted us. Personal information is always removed. Learn from these posts, or contact us yourself to get free personalized help.

I would love some help purchasing an engagement ring.

I am shopping Blue Nile. I want the most affordable clean looking diamond for my money. I’m looking at a 1 carat that will fit in a halo setting.

The two halo settings I’ve chosen are the Cushion Halo Diamond Engagement Ring and the Petite Twisted Halo Diamond Engagement Ring. I believe the twisted has to have a round which may be a limiting factor and the cushion a cushion cut.

I am looking to spend less than $5,500. Certainly any assistance you can provide would be great. I want a sparkly and clear looking diamond. Thank you!

For halo settings, we suggest sticking with H+ stones (https://www.diamonds.pro/education/color/).

Here are the biggest options I could find within your budget:

Cushion cut:
Blue Nile LD11410404

Blue Nile LD11251978

Blue Nile LD11414448

Round cut:
Blue Nile LD11240229

Blue Nile LD11371142

Blue Nile LD11033161

All these diamonds are well-cut, eye-clean and brilliant.

Thanks for the info! So with a platinum or white gold setting, with H surrounding diamonds, will an H look colorless to the eye? I can definitely get more value in a cushion cut, but is a 1 carat cushion that much bigger looking than a .90 round. I want the cleanest looking and most brilliant for the price.

Yes, H color will look colorless in the settings you chose. Regarding the size, rounds appear bigger because of the way how they are cut (always compare the actual measurements, not the carat weight). If you compare the biggest cushion I sent you (LD11414448) with this round (LD11371142), you’ll see that the round is bigger in size (the difference is approximately 0.60mm). This round is also superbly cut, therefore, it will be very bright and brilliant.

I definitely like the 3 rounds you sent. I am just comparing them in the two settings on Blue Nile that I have chosen. I am having some trouble choosing but I think I will be able to make a decision! The price of the ring in platinum with one of the diamonds you chose is $5,400 (before tax) which is slightly more than I wanted to spend but not a lot. I liked this one the best:

Blue Nile LD11371142

How about choosing a white gold instead of platinum? You’ll need to maintain both metals. As our article says (https://www.diamonds.pro/education/platinum-vs-gold/), the WG has to be dipped every few years and the platinum needs to be polished as well because it scratches. So ultimately, platinum costs you more in the beginning and doesn’t end up saving you any money in the long run. But there is one advantage of platinum – it’s hypoallergenic.

The reason I decided on platinum is that my girlfriend is prone to allergies, specifically eczema and I don’t know if the nickel in WG would cause an issue. The platinum is also heavier so I think maybe it has a more sturdy feel. I just don’t know if shed have a reactionto it.

I am expecting to order within the next day. Thank you!!

Top Recommended Vendors
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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. (Pick Up a Blue Nile Coupon Here for $50 off)
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
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