We’ve all had the same discussion with friends at dinner or colleagues in the office. How much should you spend on an engagement ring?

It’s usually met with one person declaring you can’t put a price on love and another saying they wouldn’t accept anything that’s worth less than a couple grand. But the truth is, where there was once an etiquette governing the expected spend on engagement rings, now there’s more of an anything-goes approach.

And why should you stick to stuffy, out-dated traditions? It’s 2018! In our minds, the amount spent on an engagement ring should be 100% up to the person buying it. Yes, it’s great to lust after the huge rocks worn by celebrities for a touch of inspiration, but for most of us it’s not realistic to drop a 7-digit figure on a ring. And that’s okay.

There are other things to consider that are equally, if not more, important than price. Design, ethics, stone, cut, clarity, metal, size etc.

Here’s a few things to think about before buying an engagement ring…

Be (slightly) out of your comfort zone

Buying an engagement ring needs to be realistic for your budget, but it should also make you feel slightly out of your comfort zone. Whether that’s a few hundred, a few thousand or a few hundred thousand pounds, it’s all relative. Many people go by the rule of thumb of one months’ salary.

Design is more important than price 

Whilst you usually get what you pay for, don’t just assume the higher the price tag the more they’ll love it. This ring will be worn every single day, so it’s important the design is spot-on. Don’t be afraid to ask your partner what they like (or don't like for that matter!).

Custom-made isn't always more expensive 

Custom-designed engagement rings may sound complicated and expensive, but they're really not. It simply means if you like the stone on one ring and the setting on another, a jeweller can make a ring which combines both elements to create the perfect ring. Or if you're not sure about the design, buying the stone and proposing with that is a great option. You can then enjoy designing the perfect ring together after they've said yes!

Consider splitting the cost?

Tradition dictates that whoever proposes should pay for the ring. But marriage is a partnership. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to be gifted a ring but if you’d prefer to help pay, we’re pretty sure the gesture will be appreciated.