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Dear Millennials: Yes, Your Engagement Ring Choices Matters

Growing up, most millennials were taught the importance of getting engaged with a huge, blinding, rock of a diamond ring.

Perhaps you recognize some of these phrases:

  • “3 months salary”
  • “Tiffany & Co. or the answer is no”
  • “The bigger, the better.”

Whether that’s because millennials place higher value on experiences (the growing amount of music festivals and plane tickets speak for themselves), we care about justice (no blood diamonds here), or we’re simply learning to conserve our money in ways past generations didn’t, overpriced engagement rings are on their way out the door.

Woman's left hand wearing The Alexandria on ring finger

Ring: The Alexandria

Instead, one trend we’re turning to are alternative engagement rings.

What does this mean, exactly? It can vary from person to person, but for the most part an alternative engagement ring isn’t a “real diamond” and doesn’t cost a chunk of change. These simulated stones, however, look and shine like a real diamond and are quickly taking over the wedding industry – and we’re saving a ton of money on them, too.

How much money? Thousands, actually. The average cost of a "real diamond" engagement ring is $5,900 according to a 2019 study by The Knot. If you felt your wallet cringe, you're not alone! As millennials face a downwind economy, alarming amounts of student debt, and a shortage of decent jobs, spending $6k on a ring doesn't sound like fun (much less, smart).

Woman's left hand wearing The Cambria and The Mia on ring finger

Rings: The Cambria, The Mia

But if you’re on the fence and not sure if you want to leave the diamond train, consider this:

  • You’ll save a ton of money. We mentioned this already, but think about what you get out of it. This frees up your budget for the wedding, the honeymoon, any experiences you’re looking forward to, or even your future house/family. And that’s just the start! Putting the couple thousand (or more) that you were originally planning for your ring can open up doors for investments, opportunities, and much more. Plus, it wouldn't hurt to put a nice dent in your student debt.
  • You’re making the ethical choice. When you opt for real diamonds, there is no way to know 100% you’re purchasing from a reliable, conflict-free source. Blood diamonds, for those unfamiliar with the term, are diamonds that are mined in war zones controlled by forces that are opposed to the legitimate government of that country. The diamonds are then sold in order to finance military action against said government. Innocent lives are harmed through these diamonds, and corruption is fed. Is that worth a rock on your finger?
  • You realize that love has no price. Did you know that the number one issue married couples fight over is finances? Both you and your partner need to be on the same wavelength when it comes to money, and who wants to start off this next chapter in your life stressed and in debt? Too often we get caught up in keeping up with the Joneses and find ourselves comparing such trivial things against other people. When you realize that material items are meaningless compared to what your love stands for, you’ll be a lot happier.
Woman's left hand wearing The Scarlett

Ring: The Scarlett

If you’re still not convinced, why not take a look for yourself?

Browse through the collection at Modern Gents and come to your own conclusion! Compare the rings to those from big box jewelers and we guarantee that there’s going to be something that you’ll fall in love with. Forget all you’ve been taught growing up and try to look at getting engaged and married with a new set of eyes: your wallet will thank you!

Woman's left hand wearing The Olivia on ring finger
Ring: The Olivia

Share your thoughts below!

Have you been considering a conflict-free, affordable engagement ring? If so, why do you think this is an option that other people should consider as well?