Diamonds have been the staple gemstone in engagement rings for decades, which can be credited to De Beer’s “A Diamond is Forever” campaign in the 1940s, along with the gemstone’s durability which allows it to be passed down through generations. A diamond engagement ring can come in a variety of styles, whether as a solitaire, halo, or even a three-stone. These traditional styles may consist of one brilliant-cut center stone, either alone, or being complimented by other smaller diamonds. However, according to De Beers in a recent report, Millennials and Gen Z are moving away from this traditional style as they seem to be more interested in a non-traditional engagement ring style.
The term ‘non-traditional’ to describe an engagement ring is quite a broad term, as one style can seem more or less traditional to one individual. However, the non-traditional engagement rings that will be covered here encompass a variety of styles and stones, like engagement rings with colored stones to the Toi et Moi style ring. Any engagement ring that does not consist of a sole colorless diamond center stone can be viewed as a non-traditional engagement ring.
A Spin on the Classic Diamond
Traditional engagement ring diamonds are recognizable for their precisely cut, near colorless to colorless hue. But there are a variety of different types of diamonds that provide a more unique look.
The Fancy-Colored Diamond Engagement Ring
Colorless diamonds are primarily coveted for engagement rings, with the more colorless being the more valuable and sought after. However, colored diamonds have a strong presence in jewelry and engagement rings, as well. Primarily known as Fancy-Colored Diamonds, these gemstones are graded on a fluctuating scale of saturation, with some saturations being rarer than others.
Jennifer Lopez’s 2022 engagement ring from Ben Affleck signified the luxury and exclusivity that fancy-colored diamonds represent. Lopez received an 8.5-carat green diamond with trapezoid-shaped white diamonds. Green diamonds are the second-rarest colored diamond, making them extremely valuable and difficult to acquire. This engagement ring was designed by Rahaminov Diamonds and the stone was sourced by Ilan Portugali.
Credit: JLo’s Newsletter
Get a similar look here at Skeie’s:
Raw Diamond Engagement Rings
A raw diamond is often called ‘rough’ or ‘raw’ because of its rough appearance in comparison to a cut diamond. Basically, they are diamonds that have not been cut or polished. These gemstones can be appealing to some because of their earthy and rustic appearance, along with a lower price point.
Check out the look here:
Rose-Cut Diamond Engagement Rings
Since the introduction of the brilliant-cut diamond in the early 1900’s, rose-cut diamonds have not been as celebrated until now. Rose-cut diamond engagement rings are making a comeback, and are easily recognizable by their flat, multi-faceted appearance. The benefit of this particular non-traditional engagement style is this diamond cut provides a bigger appearance for less since no carat weight is wasted when cutting. It may not have the sparkle a brilliant-cut diamond has, but it provides a different, more vintage look.
Lily Collins premiered her rose-cut engagement ring after getting engaged to her now-husband Charlie McDowell in 2020. It features a light-pink rose-cut diamond, between 2-3 carats, bezel set in yellow gold. It was designed by Irene Neuwirth Jewellery.
Credit: @lilycollins on Instagram
Check out this rose-cut engagement ring from the Skeie’s Collection:
Colored Gemstone Engagement Rings
Colored gemstones are also a popular choice when looking for a non-traditional engagement ring. Some notable choices are sapphire and ruby, due to their intense color and hardness, which makes them a smart, yet beautiful choice in a ring that will be worn every day. Other colored gems may look appealing to put in an engagement ring, like an opal or a moonstone, but due to their lack of hardness, these stones tend to not withstand the everyday wear an engagement ring deserves.
A beautiful example of a colored gemstone engagement ring is Kate Middleton’s sparkling 12-carat oval blue sapphire ring surrounded by a 14-diamond halo. This ring once belonged to the late Princess Diana and was passed down to Middleton from Prince William. Sapphires tend to be a celebrity-favorite gemstone for a non-traditional engagement ring because of their color variations, durability, and timelessness.
Credit: Paul Hackett/Reuters and Pool New/Reuters
Get a similar look here at Skeie’s:
Switching up the Style
Traditional engagement rings all have a similar stylistic look, with the main center stone in either a solitaire, halo, or sidestone setting. Any style besides this usually falls under the idea of non-traditional, whether there are two main center stones, like in a Toi et Moi style, or the diamond is set sideways, like in an East-to-West setting. Though there are a variety of different setting styles, here are a few more popular non-traditional engagement rings.
Toi Et Moi Engagement Rings
Toi et Moi Engagement rings have recently garnered more popularity due to numerous celebrities sporting these in the past year. This engagement ring style is recognizable by having two center stones, which are either the same or similar in size. Primarily, this style is set in a solitaire band, with little to no other sidestones to take away from the main diamonds. This ring also allows for flexibility in choosing stones. The Toi et Moi engagement ring can either be styled with two diamonds or one diamond and a colored gemstone.
Credit: @emrata on Instagram
Emily Ratajkowski’s Toi et Moi Engagement Ring
You can read more about Toi et Moi Engagement Rings in our dedicated blog about them.
East-to-West Engagement Rings
The East-to-West style engagement ring may be the most traditional of non-traditional engagement rings, as the only feature that makes it more unique is flipping the diamond or gemstone sideways, so it faces “east to west.” This style looks gorgeous with emerald, oval, or radiant cut diamonds with a longer shape.
Joey King, star of The Kissing Booth, showed off her east-to-west engagement ring after getting engaged to Steven Piet in 2022. This ring features an oval-shaped diamond set in a yellow gold band, east-to-west.
Credit: @joeyking on Instagram
Check out our wide selection of non-traditional and traditional engagement rings here.