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10 Non-Traditional Engagement Ring Ideas

Never before have we had greater freedom and opportunity to express ourselves than we do today. When we’re proud of an outfit, we post a selfie to IG. If we have a hot date, we post to Twitter or Facebook. Feel like dancing? TikTok! We wear what we’re confident in, not what we’re told to. We stand out instead of simply fitting in (no wonder Etsy is so popular). And, most of all, where we spend our dollars says as much about our values as it does our tastes. Simply put, we are living in the era of free expression. Why then should you have to conform when buying an engagement ring? If the love of your life is unique to you, shouldn’t the symbol of that relationship be as well?

For this reason, Modern Gents is sharing with you our list of top 10 non-traditional engagement ring ideas.

1. Affordable Engagement Rings 

We felt this was important enough to address first. Society tells us that we ought to spend extravagant prices on jewelry — especially engagement rings. This isn’t exactly a new practice either. Thanks, De Beers Corporation. 

There’s some good news, though! Every year, more and more people are rejecting the notion that love should come at a price. That is why Modern Gents is proud to offer high-quality and affordable engagement rings. In fact, none of our stylish rings exceed $189.95. And every day we’re excited to offer sales so you can focus on finding the perfect ring, not how to pay for it. Who wants to start a lifelong romance out with four (or five) figure debt anyway?

"The Sweetheart" engagement ring

"The Sweetheart" Engagement Ring

Each of our women’s bands is designed with 925 sterling silver and plated with your choice of rose gold or rhodium plating — to help brides shine even more than they already do. Our rings also come in a number of styles to help every woman feel the truest form of herself, whether she prefers a look that is modern, classic or vintage. 

Are Cheap Engagement Rings Bad? We Set the Record Straight

Just because you aren’t spending an arm and a leg doesn’t mean you have to give up stylistic touches you love. You can still get that perfect pavé, solitaire ring, the prong setting you’ve always wanted. Whatever your personal style desires, you don’t have to compromise.

2. Rings with Conflict-Free Stones

One of the reasons Modern Gents is able to offer affordable rings is because we design them with man-made simulated stones. While their price point is important, what matters even more to us is the ability to design our rings with conflict-free materials. The global diamond industry has devastated the environment, too often used child labor and even helped fund genocidal wars in developing nations. It’s the demand for diamonds and the insistence that they be mined that fuels these incendiary practices

The desires of the engagement ring design industry are changing as a whole, though. More and more consumers are moving away from burying themselves in debt to buy that traditional diamond ring and going with non-traditional ring options and more minimalist choices. “Fine jewelry” is losing its luster (pun intended). And why shouldn’t it when lab-made choices can be just as good now?

Did you know that a diamond made in a lab has the exact chemical compound (i.e., the same look and feel) as one found from the earth? When people shop for diamonds, they typically care about:

  • The stone’s cut (how it is shaped)
  • The stone’s color (how white and bright it is) 
  • The stone’s clarity (how many imperfections it has)
  • The stone’s carat (what its weight is)
  • The stone’s cost (every quality above will impact what you pay)

Consider, then, that:

characteristics of rings with conflict free stones
  • Every one of our stones is designed with one of the most popular cuts in the world. 
  • Every one of our stones is as colorful, white or bright as any mined diamond.
  • Every one of our stones is physically perfect in ways a mined diamond cannot be.
  • Every one of our rings features stones as large or as conspicuous as the buyer prefers.
  • Every one of our rings boasts a price tag as attractive as the stone it features.

All of this begs the question: Why, then, is having a conflict diamond so important? 

3. Unique-Shaped Rings

There’s more to life than just a diamond solitaire ring (though we still love the look). Just as every woman is gorgeous in her own shape and size, so too are engagement rings. That is why Modern Gents offers:

While we’re on the subject, there’s something to be said for a solid metallic band that’s as attractive on a woman in her little black dress as when she’s in sweats rewatching Bridgerton (we'll miss you Regé-Jean Page). In fact, a solid band is the perfect way for a bride and groom to match. A clean, simple band never goes out of style. Why reinvent the wheel?
Shop His and Hers Wedding Bands

4. Yellow Gold Bands

Silver-hued engagement rings have become the modern standard for brides, but what’s old is new again when it comes to yellow gold. This timeless-colored band is making a comeback and has become quite trendy in recent years. If you’re looking for a ring of this style, might we suggest The One and Only, our take on the classic engagement ring that will never go out of style. Seriously, it’s called The One and Only. If there’s something more timeless than that, we’ve yet to hear of it.

yellow gold bands

5. Men’s Engagement Rings 

Yup. This is becoming more and more common, and why not? As gender roles continue to evolve and women rightfully make gains in our society as equals, why shouldn’t they have the right to propose as well? But even among those who prefer a more traditional proposal, it’s also becoming more common for men to celebrate and signify their engagement with a ring as well.

Whichever route you choose, Modern Gents offers affordable men’s rings that are durable, modern and sleek and made from your choice of titanium, tungstenwood or silicone. We also offer a bold line of black wedding rings and wood wedding rings, perfect for the modern man as an engagement ring or wedding band.

6. Active Style Bands

"The Flex" silicone ring in pink

"The Flex" Silicone Ring in Pink

Every bride and groom is different. Some will choose to wear their wedding rings after marriage on only special occasions, while others will choose to wear their rings every day of the year. If you know you’re going to be hard on your rings, active lifestyle bands are a great option, even as your primary wedding ring if you like!

There’s no right or wrong way to wear an engagement ring or wedding band. But there are considerations. Those whose jobs require them to work with their hands, those who spend a lot of time outdoors or those who like to play sports might consider flexible silicone rings, stronger metal rings like those made from titanium or tungsten or rings designed with a smaller width so they’re less likely to get in the way. One of the perks of silicone rings is that they can break should you need them to, potentially saving you from injury.

7. Eternity Rings 

In the last half century, eternity rings have become one of the most popular ways for couples to celebrate a milestone. Since there are few milestones — if any — more important than an engagement, why shouldn’t eternity rings also be purchased for marriage proposals? This is especially true given the symbolism of an eternity ring. They’re called eternity rings because the stones that encircle the band (in a continuous loop) are meant to signify a couple’s never-ending love and commitment to each other.  

What Is an Eternity Ring, Anyway?

Actually, eternity rings have a fascinating backstory dating to ancient Egypt. The Egyptians believed in the important symbolism of circles and therefore wore rings with designs that encircled the entire band. It would take thousands of years, however, for eternity rings to complete their comeback. In the 1960s, a famous jeweler made a deal with the Soviet Union: In exchange for the government creating a single channel that controlled the world’s diamond supply, the jeweler would buy 90 percent of Soviet diamond reserves.  

These diamonds, however, were smaller than those typically preferred in engagement rings. That’s when the jeweler conceived the modern eternity ring. Instead of a ring that was centered around a single large stone, what about a ring that featured numerous smaller stones? The result was a more subtle yet no less stunning piece of jewelry — a style that baseball player Joe DiMaggio chose for his engagement ring to style icon Marilyn Monroe.

eternity ring options

Modern Gents features several eternity ring options. But we think that The Eternity — our signature eternity ring — strikes the perfect balance between being a unique engagement ring idea while also being effortlessly beautiful.

8. Necklaces, Bracelets and Earrings

As long as we’re talking about unusual wedding rings, who says you have to choose a ring in the first place? The importance of an engagement ring is its symbol as a bride’s lifelong commitment to her fiancé. But a necklace, bracelet or set of earrings is just as capable of symbolizing that commitment. 

Like Modern Gents rings, our collection of bridal necklacesbridal bracelets and bridal earrings are made with 925 sterling silver and plated with your choice of rhodium, for a stunning shine, or rose gold, for playful warmth.  

If you prefer a clean and modern look, consider The Kali necklace, The Abbey bracelet and The Leah earrings.

Is vintage more your style? We suggest The Harmony necklace, The Nova bracelet and The Pearl earrings.

Or if you’re drawn to more classic styles, check out The Lily necklace, The Hana bracelet and The Ritz earrings.

Explore Our Entire Bridal Jewelry Collection

9. Gemstone-Style Rings 

"The Lovely" ring in rose gold

"The Lovely" in Rose Gold

Admit it. We remain captivated by the British royal family (rest in peace, Prince Philip). Whether you side with Harry and Meghan or those who remain in Buckingham Palace, the royal family continues to inspire millions of people with both their style and elegance. It’s worth noting, then, that brides in the House of Windsor have oftentimes forgone traditional diamond engagement rings, choosing gemstone centerpiece designs instead. 

For instance, when Princess Diana was given her choice of engagement ringsshe famously chose one that featured a blue sapphire. That design, according to royal jewelry historians, paid homage to the brooch Prince Albert gave Queen Victoria on their wedding day in 1840. After the passing of Princess Diana, and eventual engagement of her oldest son the Duke of Cambridge (William) to Kate Middleton, it was the duchess-to-be who inherited the blue sapphire engagement ring, which she wears to this day. 

For those who want to look like a princess without paying royal prices, we suggest The Halo, featuring a beautiful 1.5 ct. simulated stone that sits atop a glistening 925 sterling silver band. We offer this model in six colors, including a deep blue tanzanite, as well as pink sapphire (as on the engagement ring of Princess Eugenie), red ruby (as on the engagement ring of the Duchess of York), green emerald or citrus colored morganite. Who’s going to say no to colored gemstones on her finger? We sure wouldn’t!

By the way, if you enjoy stacking your rings, our affordable and colorful collection is the perfect way to mix and match without breaking the bank. Just a refresher if you don’t remember your last art class: complementary colors like green with red, blue with orange and purple with yellow look best with each other because they’re complete opposites on the color wheel. 

So let loose and have fun!

unique engagement rings bliss
Shop All Gemstone Engagement Rings

10. Multiple Ring and Jewelry Options 

As we said, there are several advantages to wearing the type of affordable jewelry that Modern Gents offers. Not only will it save you hundreds if not thousands of dollars, but it also gives you the freedom to wear different pieces in different styles, depending on your outfit, mood and tastes. Want an aquamarine-colored stone? Sure! Moonstone? Why not? Your birthstone? Absolutely! You shouldn’t have to settle for less than something that you love. 

At our prices, there’s no reason you can’t have different engagement rings for different occasions. Or matching engagement necklaces, bracelets and earrings. For example:

You can boast unapologetic glam by pairing The Victoria ring with The Celine necklace, The Athena bracelet and The Eve earrings.  

Or, to embrace the flirtatious side in every woman, pair The Forever ring with The Affinity necklace, The Hope bracelet and The Jasmine earrings.  

These, of course, are just examples to prove a larger point: a single noun is not enough to define who a woman is. Why should a single ring?   

Rings Just as Unique as You and Your Future Spouse

Tradition is always safe and often comforting. And there is nothing wrong with buying or wearing a classic-styled engagement ring. At Modern Gents, we design plenty that help make thousands of new brides ecstatic each year and — we’d like to think — for a lifetime. But we penned this blog to also let you know that tradition doesn’t mean right. And you owe it to yourself, or your future bride, to select a ring that reflects who you are as a couple, not what couples are told to look like. 

In the era of free expression, let’s be free to speak our minds. Let’s be free to defend our values. Let’s be free to express our personality and let’s be free to symbolize our commitment to the person we love most with the ring and style we desire most. 

Why Shop with Us?