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Popular Types of Ring Settings

The choices are endless. Halter top or strapless. Mini skirt or maxi skirt. One shoulder or off the shoulder. Chunky heels or kitten heels. Hair worn up or hair worn down. Makeup on or makeup off. Modest or flirtatious. 

And that’s just for a Friday night.  

There is a dizzying array of options in women’s fashion, due in no small part to the beautiful depths of their personality. But whether you’re buying for yourself or the love of your life, jewelry shopping can also be no less overwhelming, especially if the ring you’re choosing is meant to last a lifetime. If it is, congratulations! We couldn’t be happier. And we want to help. So let’s start first with the basics, including our list of the most popular types of ring settings.  

The one and only engagement ring

1. Solitaire Setting

Close your eyes and picture an engagement ring. Got it? Great. We’re guessing you probably thought of something like this. That’s because it has a solitaire setting, which is the standard for engagement rings. The reason that the solitaire engagement ring is so popular is simple: It allows your choice of stone to shine. Some of the most beautiful, non-solitaire rings boast an ornate design that captures the eye. But a solitaire ring features a more subtle yet no less beautiful design that perfectly complements every woman who is stunning enough on her own. 

Shop All Solitaire Engagement Rings

2. Pavé Setting

Of course, for every bride who believes less is more, there are those who unapologetically believe more is more. And who’s to argue?! If you share this philosophy, we recommend the pavé setting. In French, pavé literally means to pave. A pavé setting therefore paves a ring with stones for an even more glamorous look and feel. Just bear in mind that for every stone that adds beauty is also another stone that can become detached. So if you like to exercise, spend time outdoors or work with your hands, you should consider not wearing this style of ring every moment of every day or, alternatively, having a flexible, silicone ring for physical activity. At Modern Gents, we offer those, too! 

stack of vintage rings

3. Cluster Setting

The sister of the pavé setting is the cluster ring, which is just as glamorous in its use of one shining stone after another. Specifically, this ring uses a cluster of stones that surround a larger centerpiece stone. As a result, many cluster rings are considered pavé rings, and many pavé rings are considered cluster rings. But it’s not the label that matters. Only the stares! Our “I Do” ring is the perfect example of a classic cluster setting.

4. Eternity Setting

Another style of ring that shares similarities with pavé and cluster settings is the ever fashionable eternity ring. Typically, these rings are popular for celebrating anniversaries or other momentous occasions between romantic couples. In recent years, they’ve also become popular as wedding bands and as alternatives to traditional engagement rings. That means if you’re about to propose or are hoping to say I do, this style is definitely worthy of your consideration. For those unfamiliar with eternity rings, they feature numerous small stones across the full circle of a band – an infinite pattern that signifies the never-ending love and commitment between two soulmates. 

Shop Our Best-Selling “The Eternity” Band

5. Channel Setting

The Chloe engagement ring

Many channel set rings double as eternity rings because this style will always feature stones along its band. Ever take a geography course? If so, you might remember learning about channel waterways: bodies of water between two land masses. That’s the concept behind the name of the channel set ring. Set in the middle of the band is a row of stones held in place by strips of metal on both sides. That might not sound glamorous, but in fact, the finished product is exactly that. It evokes the feel of classical Hollywood. For this iconic look, check out ‘The Chloe’ ring or ‘The Emma’.

6. Petite Setting

Despite the availability of elaborate options, many women prefer the look and comfort of smaller bands without stones. For them, a petite ring is the ideal choice. They’re minimalist. Elegant. And easy to wear. They are perfect with a favorite dress for a night out or a favorite t-shirt for a night in. 

Browse Our Collection of Minimalist Engagement Rings

7. Side Stone Setting

When you do go out, you want a friend by your side. Right? How about two? The side stone shares a similar philosophy. It features a centerpiece stone flanked by stones on either side. Kind of like wingmen. So command any room with strength in numbers. 

 

The Princess engagement ring

 

“The Princess” Engagement Ring

8. Split Shank Setting

Sometimes, though, you need to stand alone. And in a world full of straight lines, why not diverge? A split shank setting does exactly that. Instead of a band that maintains a spherical shape, this ring’s band splits on either side of whichever gorgeous stone you choose. Not only does this add a refreshing burst of asymmetry to any ring, it can also add romance, regality or grace. 

9. Prong Setting

The prong setting, however, is less about form than function. It specifically refers to the prongs that hold a stone in place. Prongs are the most common way for rings to achieve this, with typically four or six being utilized depending on the ring’s design. On one hand, the more prongs holding a stone in place, the less likely that gorgeous stone will become dislodged. On the other hand, fewer prongs holding a stone in place provide more surface area for light to reflect off, giving your ring extra shine and sparkle. In the end, only you can determine what your comfort level is and what aspects of a ring’s design you want to prioritize. You should know, however, that at Modern Gents, we take extra precautions to design our handcrafted jewelry with high-quality materials and set them very carefully so your purchase requires as little maintenance — or worries — as possible. 

10. Bezel Setting

One vintage — and as a result, trendy — ring style that doesn’t include prongs is the bezel setting. This ring features metal that covers the sides of a stone so only its top shows. That makes it a very practical, secure ring, but as we said, it’s also coming back in style because of its unique look that more and more women are choosing. Just remember what we said about prongs and light. With a bezel setting, no light can reflect off its sides, a tradeoff that might matter to some while mattering less to those who prefer a hip and vintage-chic style.  

The Sofia engagement ring

11. Milgrain Setting

Another setting for the girl with an old soul is the milgrain ring, particularly popular during the art deco period. A milgrain style features metal beading, typically along the outside of the band, that creates a beautiful, antique style pattern. At Modern Gents, we know that every woman has a style all her own, which is why we offer vintage rings along with modern and classic options that allow our customers to express each part of their personality. 

Discover Our Vintage Engagement Rings

12. Bead Setting

Not to be confused by the beading of the milgrain setting, the bead ring refers specifically to grooves indented into a band for smaller stones to be securely inserted. One easy way to determine if a ring uses this technique is if it has grooves on the inner part of its band. Of course, with rings, it’s not what’s on the inside — it’s what’s on the outside that counts. And the effect can be jaw-dropping.  

engaged couple showing ring

13. Cathedral Setting

Speaking of jaw-dropping... The cathedral setting is at once beautiful and dramatic (sometimes like your significant other). It features a centerpiece stone that is elevated by metal archways on each side, mimicking the grand silhouette of a gothic cathedral. You don’t have to be religious or know the history of architecture to appreciate this setting. Just know that these structures reached as high as they could to inspire the awe of the masses. Why not a ring that achieves the same?  

14. High-Setting vs. Low-Setting (and Medium Setting)

This brings us to the choice between high-setting rings vs. low-setting rings. Both are highly attractive and really just a matter of preference. A low-setting means that the centerpiece stone rises only slightly higher than the band while a high-setting (as you guessed) rises even higher above the band.

The higher a ring is set, the bolder the statement and the more light that will reflect off the stone. Just also be aware that higher-set rings increase the likelihood that a stone catches onto something when you’re out and about, wearing gloves or wearing your favorite oversized sweater. For those who want to strike the difference, consider a medium-set ring. 

These considerations aside, some women just prefer the look of one setting with others preferring the other. What matters above all else is if the bride loves her ring. So don’t overthink it! 

High-Setting vs. Low-Setting Engagement Rings: What Is Best for You?

15. Halo Setting

Ultimately, what does matter most is that you and your significant other be able to wear wedding jewelry that is true to you. That’s why we offer as many rings as we do in different cuts, shapes, colors and styles, from the band to the stone itself. None of our ring settings exemplifies this more than our collection of halo engagement rings

A halo-set ring features a large centerpiece stone encircled by smaller, complementary stones for a breathtaking halo effect. We offer this setting with simulated diamonds that are round cut, princess cut or cushion cut, as well as unique oval shaped rings and pear shaped rings. Our signature ring of this setting, The Halo, features a beautiful 1.5 ct simulated gemstone that adds a vibrant splash of color to any ensemble. Available in six colors that are perfect for stacking, we recommend pairing red ruby with green emerald and citrus-colored morganite with either deep blue tanzanite or pink sapphire.

closeup of stacked wedding rings

Character Counts 

Finally, it’s important for us to convey that the choices you have is why we began this piece. But the choices you deserve is why we began Modern Gents. 

The jewelry industry tells you to care about cut, color, clarity and carat. And we do. But at Modern Gents, four Cs are not enough. We also care about cost. And we care about character. This is why each of our rings is made from conflict-free materials so the jewelry we sell is at a price that you — and the world — can afford. 

In an industry with endless choices, we think that’s one more option that you deserve above all others. 

Thinking About Ring Shapes? Learn About The Different Types of Engagement Rings

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