Proposing is nerve-racking enough without the added pressure of worrying that your partner won't like the ring you've spent a small fortune on. With that in mind there's now a smart way to keep everyone happy.
First: buy a "proposal ring" (yes, it's a thing) that will act as a stand-in engagement ring when you pop the question. Here the balance needs to be just right - special enough to be kept for ever but not so pricey that it impacts significantly on your budget. A few rules to note: no gold plate (it will wear off before you know it) and definitely no Christmas cracker plastic or Haribo ring sweets (lol,not). Find something with a single stone or stones rather than plain gold so the aesthetic is engagement ring-like, as well as pretty and wearable, because the idea is this ring will eventually migrate to the right hand to be worn again and again.
Next: embark on the purchase of the engagement ring together, whether that's a ready-made piece or commissioned from a jeweller. The latter may seem daunting but all the designers we've featured will walk you through the process, give countless options and tease out of you exactly what you like .. together.