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average engagement ring diamond size today?

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denverboy

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If you had to guess the diamond size for a 24 yr old w/ an average “middle class” status… what would it be? I just want to get an idea of what the avg poster here thinks is “avg” or what they “expect”. You can give a range if you like. I don’t want to give my gf something that is pathetic haha


P.S. I know some of you will be concerned that I will simply choose whatever size you guys say, but don’t worry… I am definitely only going to pick what I can afford and budget for. This is just for curiosity =D

 

Circe

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It really depends on personal details as much as the "average" ... I think the most recent study says the average American e-ring size is something like .35 carats. But one of our member on PS just did an awesome study of PS rings that came out closer to 1 ct. for the site average ... which, I suppose, isn''t too surprising for a site of diamond lovers. Instead of trying to factor out a generically appropriate size, take a look at what her family and friends are wearing ... consider what kinds of rings you see on women in your area (metropolitan, suburban, rural ...?), and think about what you think would suit *her.*
 

luvmyhalo

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When I got engaged, I was 25 and what I would consider middle class. I expected (sound terrible doesn''t it??!!) and got a little over a 1.0 carat RB solitaire.
 

RxTechRN2b

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Let me just start out by saying that a 0.75 carat diamond of extraordinary quality will be whiter, brighter, out-sparkle, and appear larger than the mediocre 1 carat anyday. That said, I do believe the actual carat size expectations for your age group (regardless of social class) has risen substantially since I was engaged in 1984. I was 20 and middle class, and my ring was typical for my area -- a 0.25-0.3 carat round solitaire set on a slender yellow gold ring with 4-prong platinum head. I wore that ring for the entire 20-years I stayed married. Nowadays it is common to "upgrade" until reaching the desired large size. I''m also seeing that young people expect to start out with that large size instead of waiting to earn it through years of hard work. My suspicion is that unless parents are buying these diamonds, easy credit is the culprit. And marriage is hard enough without starting it saddled with $15 - $20,000 and up in debt (for an item they don''t need).

In conclusion, if you pay cash for an extraordinary diamond of high color/clarity and exceptionally good cut, it will not be pathetic (even if 0.25 carats is the biggest you can afford). Put that diamond in a simple setting of 18k gold or platinum, and it will look stunning indeed. In fact, under-a-carat, low set solitaires or delicate halo''s are my favorite, understated and classy style!
 

kcoursolle

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I think this is a dangerous question to as pricescopers since our average is waaay above the national average
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I would look at her friends rings who are a similar age as you and in similar financial status and take into consideration where you live, your budget, whether you are upwardly mobile, etc.
 

surfgirl

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Date: 7/15/2008 4:13:01 PM
Author: kcoursolle
I think this is a dangerous question to as pricescopers since our average is waaay above the national average
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Not really though... That PS "average" that Gwen did is where it is because the stats are very skewed due to a handful of larger than 3ct rings, but only a handful here. The most common size here on PS, IIRC, is in the 1ct. range. I''d guess the average for the average non-PSer middle class is probably .50ct, based on what I see in real life.
 

kcoursolle

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Date: 7/15/2008 4:35:21 PM
Author: surfgirl

Date: 7/15/2008 4:13:01 PM
Author: kcoursolle
I think this is a dangerous question to as pricescopers since our average is waaay above the national average
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Not really though... That PS ''average'' that Gwen did is where it is because the stats are very skewed due to a handful of larger than 3ct rings, but only a handful here. The most common size here on PS, IIRC, is in the 1ct. range. I''d guess the average for the average non-PSer middle class is probably .50ct, based on what I see in real life.
Exactly, our average might be double the national average, but I do agree that there is some strong skewing going on because of the extra large stones.
 

Iowa Lizzy

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I think the average differs with anyone you''re going to ask.

When BF and I started looking, we went with the old "2 months salary" idea. We went to a Jared one time (I know, I know, we only looked and I hadn''t found PS yet so don''t judge!) and the sales associate said the average she''d seen customers spend was around $4000. I was ready to pop her in the nose since she had already shown us stones costing much more than that. What kind of an upsell was she going for?!?

Anywho, I live in the Midwest and I''ve seen stones ranging from .3 cts to 2.5 cts. It seems to depend mostly on the age of the couple and where they are in their lives. My BF and I are both 26 and we are looking in the 1.75+ range. That said, we don''t have any school loans, car or house payments that I would normally expect to impact that kind of a decision.

Hope that helps and hope I didn''t ramble too much.
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dockman3

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I can tell you that my gf, who, like me, is in her mid 20's, is expecting around or a little over 1ct. She also wanted a three stone ring, so I ended up compromising and getting a 0.82ct center with 1.23ct total weight. The ring total is over 1, but the center is only 0.82. I think that is actually going to be on the high end of our friends, but we are one of the last couples to get engaged. By the way, I'm a grad student who still isn't in the "real world" and I would consider myself middle class.

ETA: The ring I picked out ended up being closer to 5 months salary. If I had only been able to go with the standard two months, it would have been a lot smaller. But I had been saving for a while, so spending the extra wasn't a big deal to me. Plus, she's worth it!
 

purrfectpear

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I''m not going to answer in terms of carat weight because there''s quite a disparity between what $5K will buy online vs. a brick and mortar jewelry store.

I would say that the average expenditure is somewhere around $5000 to $7000. That might buy a poorly cut, commercial grade mall ring around .75 at a chain store, or a nice 1 carat online.
 

joe678

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Lizzy, I thought it was more like 3 months, at least that what they try to ingrain around here. As for me, its ~1.5 that my gf and her friends thinks is normal... I actually just got a 2.05 cushion in a replicated HW halo setting and am psyched!... its supposed to be ready in a week (~2 week turnaround!) stone looks great as well as the setting. Most of all I''m just glad that this whole process is done with! Now just to figure out how to do it...
 

surfgirl

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Date: 7/15/2008 5:31:42 PM
Author: joe678
Lizzy, I thought it was more like 3 months, at least that what they try to ingrain around here.
When you say "around here", are you talking about PS or where you live? I ask because I dont think anyone here advocates for spending a set amount based on how much one''s monthly salary is, but rather, based on what one can afford. And being able to pay for, and being able to afford something are two very different things.
 

february2003bride

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Date: 7/15/2008 5:43:47 PM
Author: surfgirl

Date: 7/15/2008 5:31:42 PM
Author: joe678
Lizzy, I thought it was more like 3 months, at least that what they try to ingrain around here.
When you say ''around here'', are you talking about PS or where you live? I ask because I dont think anyone here advocates for spending a set amount based on how much one''s monthly salary is, but rather, based on what one can afford. And being able to pay for, and being able to afford something are two very different things.
Ditto. Even though pricescope is about diamonds and settings, I''ve never read a post that was suggested someone go into debt for a ring, but rather buy what you can afford with a great upgrade policy built in!
 

Skippy123

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Date: 7/15/2008 5:56:00 PM
Author: february2003bride


Date: 7/15/2008 5:43:47 PM
Author: surfgirl



Date: 7/15/2008 5:31:42 PM
Author: joe678
Lizzy, I thought it was more like 3 months, at least that what they try to ingrain around here.
When you say 'around here', are you talking about PS or where you live? I ask because I dont think anyone here advocates for spending a set amount based on how much one's monthly salary is, but rather, based on what one can afford. And being able to pay for, and being able to afford something are two very different things.
Ditto. Even though pricescope is about diamonds and settings, I've never read a post that was suggested someone go into debt for a ring, but rather buy what you can afford with a great upgrade policy built in!
Thritto! Welcome to Pricescope by the way! If you tell us your budget we can help you look
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rcrosier

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Jul 10, 2008
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I am 22 and recently bought my g/f an engagement ring. I still have one year of undergrad left, but I took a year off and worked to save money for school & an engagement ring. I ended up spending about $15K, which is about 3 months salary before taxes, or almost 4 months salary after taxes (damn gov''t). I think that this is a ridiculous amount to spend on something like this, but I have been working since I was 16 and have saved quite a bit of money, so it''s not going to kill me. And no, I didn''t get help from my parents, which I''m sure people are wondering thanks to the Missy26 post from yesterday. Not that there is anything wrong with that, I just think it''s more special because it comes from my hard-earned money. Finally, she shouldn''t expect anything. Expectations will only get you one thing in a relationship, that''s usually just past the point of being unsatisfied, and just a hair short of pissed off. My g/f is a humble simple girl from a lineage of hard working middle class people, much like my parents. She would be completely satisifed with whatever I bought her, but lucky for her I enjoy seeing her in nice jewelry. (nice ==> personal preference: cut, carat, clarity, then color) Bottom line, get what you can afford and try to make her happy, just don''t go into debt doing it.
 

joe678

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Date: 7/15/2008 5:56:00 PM
Author: february2003bride
Date: 7/15/2008 5:43:47 PM

Author: surfgirl


Date: 7/15/2008 5:31:42 PM

Author: joe678

Lizzy, I thought it was more like 3 months, at least that what they try to ingrain around here.

When you say ''around here'', are you talking about PS or where you live? I ask because I dont think anyone here advocates for spending a set amount based on how much one''s monthly salary is, but rather, based on what one can afford. And being able to pay for, and being able to afford something are two very different things.

Ditto. Even though pricescope is about diamonds and settings, I''ve never read a post that was suggested someone go into debt for a ring, but rather buy what you can afford with a great upgrade policy built in!

meant in NYC not so much on ps
 

Iowa Lizzy

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Date: 7/15/2008 5:31:42 PM
Author: joe678
Lizzy, I thought it was more like 3 months, at least that what they try to ingrain around here. As for me, its ~1.5 that my gf and her friends thinks is normal... I actually just got a 2.05 cushion in a replicated HW halo setting and am psyched!... its supposed to be ready in a week (~2 week turnaround!) stone looks great as well as the setting. Most of all I''m just glad that this whole process is done with! Now just to figure out how to do it...
Joe, I know what you mean. It''s those damn DeBeers commercials! Haha. We started with the 2 mo salary as sort of a jumping off point. But like I said, we are lucky enough to not have college loans, credit card debt or a mortgage. (With this housing situation, this looks like the time to buy though!)

Anyway, I can''t wait to see pics of the ring you bought! Are you having trouble figuring out how to propose? There''s a whole thread dedicated to that here I believe. I haven''t looked at it thought. (Kind of afraid of jinxing myself).

My apologies for threadjacking. Back to the topic at hand.... (left hand that is.... ring finger)

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denverboy

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thanks everyone for your great info, opinions, and advice! =D

just to throw in an answer to my own question... most of the couples I know who are married are older (near 30''s) and have pretty big rings (probably over 1 c.). If I was engaged when I was that old then sure I''d be able to afford that. But for me (1 yr of full time work after graduating w/ student loans) I am pretty sure I''ll be spending around $3,500 give or take a few hundred which should get me a diamond between 0.65-0.8 c. And after reading multiple posts on the topic, I''m totally fine w/ that cost/size. =D
 

honey22

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I personally think around the 0.75ct - 1ct is a great size depending on ring/finger size of course - ie. someone with a 3.25 ring size can get away with a smaller rock and still have it look around 1ct mark. I am in Australia where the average ring size is around the 0.35ct mark, and the most I have seen is around the 0.5ct mark.

I think in the US (and perhaps will become the trend here too) ladies like to aim for that magic 1ct mark. I think if you have the budget, then aim for a ideal cut 1ct stone. That should be a great size, not too flashy but substantial looking.
 

Dancing Fire

Super_Ideal_Rock
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my guess...
avg in the U.S....1ct
avg PS......1.25ct
avg NYC....2.75ct
avg No.Ca & So.Ca.......2.5ct
avg in the mid west....70ct
 

Circe

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Dang, Dancing Fire! I''m in SoCal by way of NYC, and I wear a 1.46: by your calculations, I''m more than a carat shy for both locales! Modesty, I assure you.
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More seriously, DenverBoy, it sounds like you''re planning a gorgeous, eminently "appropriate" ring. Good luck!
 

joe678

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Date: 7/15/2008 5:59:51 PM
Author: Skippy123
Date: 7/15/2008 5:56:00 PM

Author: february2003bride



Date: 7/15/2008 5:43:47 PM

Author: surfgirl




Date: 7/15/2008 5:31:42 PM

Author: joe678

Lizzy, I thought it was more like 3 months, at least that what they try to ingrain around here.

When you say ''around here'', are you talking about PS or where you live? I ask because I dont think anyone here advocates for spending a set amount based on how much one''s monthly salary is, but rather, based on what one can afford. And being able to pay for, and being able to afford something are two very different things.

Ditto. Even though pricescope is about diamonds and settings, I''ve never read a post that was suggested someone go into debt for a ring, but rather buy what you can afford with a great upgrade policy built in!
Thritto! Welcome to Pricescope by the way! If you tell us your budget we can help you look
1.gif

I never advocated anyone going into debt for an ering, although there is nothing wrong with debt used responsibly. The leverage may be worth it depending on the individual''s circumstance as opposed to waiting 10 years to upgrade to a stone that may well be more expensive in the future.

Just sayin...
 

diamondfan

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Messages
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Depending on your budget as a 24 year old, I think 1 to 2 carats?

I got engaged at 24 in December of 1989 with a 1.5 carat round brilliant. It was pretty average for what I noticed in my circle eventually. (I was the first to get engaged so it was hard to tell at first!)
 

ursulawrite

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Messages
388
I was 24 when I got engaged, and received a 1.3 carat solitaire--modest among US peers, but by far and away the biggest among my British compatriots.
 

phoenixgirl

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Messages
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1 to 2 carats???

My assumption when I hear 24 years old and "average middle class" is that you do not have tens of thousands of dollars in the bank. So, assuming that this purchase will wipe out your savings, or that (I really hope this isn''t the case) it will be financed, then I would say 0.50 to 0.75.

I got engaged at 24, and I cared a lot more about my then boyfriend making smart financial decisions and us being set up for the future than I did about the size of the diamond. I knew I could persuade him to get me a bigger diamond down the road if I needed/wanted one.
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tberube

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Date: 7/15/2008 8:06:45 PM
Author: Dancing Fire
my guess...

avg in the U.S....1ct

avg PS......1.25ct

avg NYC....2.75ct

avg No.Ca & So.Ca.......2.5ct

avg in the mid west....70ct

heehee! Dancing fire, you crack me up!
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Although I think I''ve heard that NYC average might be ever so slightly bigger than SoCal. Heh.
 

E B

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If I had to guess, I''d say ~.60ct is the average.
 

Lynn B

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Date: 7/15/2008 8:06:45 PM
Author: Dancing Fire
my guess...
avg in the U.S....1ct
avg PS......1.25ct
avg NYC....2.75ct
avg No.Ca & So.Ca.......2.5ct
avg in the mid west....70ct
70 carats?!!!
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1.gif
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WooHoo, I wanna live THERE!!!
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