Quick and Easy Buying Guide

Carat weight: 1 carat = 200 milligrams = 6.5 mm diameter. Doubling weight doesn't double diameter.

Diamond clarity: FL/IF/VVS/VS = super expensive, near perfect. SI = best value if you can check a photo for obvious inclusions (defects).


Color: D-G = colorless, expensive, only if you have money to burn. H-J = best value. Can go lower in gold metal settings than white metal.

Cut: Better cut ratings let more light into a diamond, making it sparkle more. Very important property, don't skimp here.

Set a budget and minimum cut (Premium). Go J color for gold and I/H for white metals. Go searching for SI1/SI2 clarity diamonds at James Allen. Pick a diamond with small/no inclusions. Choose a ring setting and buy it risk-free (60-day returns).

Invisible Diamond Ring Settings

Ever been impressed by a magician’s levitation trick? It’s pretty cool when a person appears to be levitating in mid air, not supported by anything. Well, you can play the same trick on all your family and friends with an “invisible diamond ring setting”. It makes the diamond appear to be floating in mid-air, with no support!

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Unlike prong settings, where you can see the four or six diamond prongs around the outside of the diamond, an invisible setting uses a slit in the back of the diamond. A thin bit of metal from the ring sticks into the diamond slot, holding the diamond in place. Hey presto! It looks like the diamond’s floating (that is unless you take a close look from under the ring, but you’re there to make sure no-one does that).

The trade-off with invisible diamond ring settings is that your options for adjustment or modification or even upgrades are severely limited. This is because the ring must be crafted to suit the particular stone it’s first set with. There’s not much room to maneuver with regards to changes later on.

The type of diamond cut that’s most commonly used in an invisible diamond ring setting is a princess cut diamond. The main reason for this is the shape of the princess cut – it ‘hides’ the ‘invisible’ support part of the ring behind the diamond very nicely.

If you’re going to go for an invisible diamond ring setting, make sure you think about the wearer’s lifestyle. The setting is relatively fragile compared to even a pronged arrangement, meaning that the diamond’s not going to survive hard knocks as well. This may also have warranty implications, so make sure you’re covered and happy with the warranty arrangement before you purchase this type of ring.