By Erika Winters
An engagement ring selfie with icon Elizabeth Taylor – Image: @KimKardashian on Instagram
Engagement ring selfies are on the rise. Some women are taking it to the next level and getting plastic surgery to make their hands look better in engagement ring selfies. And according to one jeweler, men are buying bigger diamonds, as they feel pressured to keep up with the stones featured in others’ selfie pictures.
The “keeping up” phenomenon is fascinating from our perspective–as a community of jewelry addicts. After all, engagement ring selfies are nothing new. They’ve become mainstream thanks to social media and celebrities, but visitors to this site have been hooked on ring selfies since our Show Me the Ring (now called Show Me the Bling) forum was launched in 2003.
One thing we’ve learned about engagement ring selfies over the last decade is bigger diamonds often command more attention. There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s natural for a jewelry lover to be impressed by a larger diamond. But admiration is one thing. It’s quite another to take the plunge on a ring upgrade. So what’s fueling this desire? Pictures, of course. But it’s often the selfie–aka the hand pic that shows a diamond to scale–that makes us gasp and then look at our own hands and want something, er, a little more substantial. Selfies are one of the leading causes of acute DSS (Diamond Shrinkage Syndrome), a common affliction around these parts.
What was once Pricescope- (or other jewelry forum-) specific is now universal. You get the ring, you shoot the selfie, you show it off on social media. When you upgrade your ring? Rinse and repeat. In the Kardashian age, showing off jewelry is now part of our online cultural landscape. We show off shamelessly online. We also encourage others to show off to us. We demand more pics–and specifically more selfies. We want to see how big these rings look on the hand.
Engagement rings used to be shown off in person. But with selfies popping up all over social media, we can see how some engagement-ring shoppers might feel the need to keep up.
“This added pressure is directly influencing the size of diamonds that our customers are buying. We are selling bigger and brighter diamonds thanks to the rise of the hand selfie,” said Nikolay Piriankov, CEO of Rare Pink jewelry.
Remember, there is no judgement here. This is a website devoted to jewelry after all. If you crave bigger diamonds, that’s cool. We would almost call that a “natural” craving until we realize that not everyone cares about diamonds or jewelry. And that’s too bad for them.
But this is what we want to know: Do you keep up with others’ engagement ring selfies? Do you crave and buy more, so you can ultimately share and show more online? We know this is a nuanced topic. But let’s get the conversation started: How much do others’ engagement ring selfie posts affect you?