Emerald rings have become a great alternative to diamonds for an engagement ring, but picking the right one can be troublesome for a variety of reasons. Of course, an emerald ring can also be worn as fashion jewelry, rather than you feeling it can only be bought for an engagement; emerald is the gift traditionally associated with the 55th wedding anniversary (but also used for the 20th and 35th anniversaries). There is huge variety both in the style of the rings available, and in the quality and color of the emeralds set into them.
The first thing to know about emerald rings, and especially if it is an engagement ring and worn all the time, is that they will not stand up to the same punishment as a diamond ring. Not too surprising when you consider that diamond is the hardest naturally occurring substance known. But for this reason, if you already have diamond jewelry and then go and get an emerald ring, keep them stored separately when you’re not wearing them, as diamonds can pretty much destroy emeralds if they are rubbing up against each other in a jewelry box. Emerald is a much softer and more vulnerable gemstone; it requires more care than the corundum stones (ruby and sapphire) or diamond. The same applies if you have a diamond wedding ring which could rub against and damage an emerald engagement ring. Take extra care.
High quality emeralds are light in color, but you will see emerald rings with all shades of green. Natural emeralds are very rare and you will know which rings have these because they will be much more expensive. If you do want to find a way to get your hands on a less expensive piece of jewelry, go for an emerald silver ring (click picture), because you can often make savings by opting for a cheaper metal band, rather than insisting on platinum or gold. In order to satisfy demand for emerald jewelry, many of these gemstones will have been artificially manufactured; you will often see these labelled as “lab created”. The cheapest of all “emerald” rings will not be genuine emeralds at all, but green cubic zirconia. These look nice and are very affordable, so they might be a good idea for an everyday ring when you feel like treating yourself.
If you are buying emerald rings for a more serious reason – like an engagement – it pays to be very picky and ask a lot of questions. Make sure you look very closely at the stone (or stones) itself, to make sure there are no imperfections or cracks. Emerald is extremely prone to internal cracking, called inclusions, and these weaken the stone itself. A sharp tap against a hard object could break the gem and leave you feeling very upset! So check before you buy. Ask the jeweler if the stone has been “oiled”. Sometimes emeralds are soaked in a transparent oil which can make the inclusions difficult to see – but they are still there!
Two other tricks can be used to help protect your emerald rings. The first is to make sure you buy rings where the gemstone is “bezel set”. This means that the stone is set within a metal collar that protects the sides of it from inadvertent impacts that might otherwise break it. The second option is to get a ring where the main emerald is part of a cluster with other gems, especially diamonds which, being harder, can offer some protection to the centerpiece stone. This type of ring is incredibly popular with common configurations being: alternating emeralds and diamonds in an eternity ring; a central row of emeralds escorted on either side by rows of diamonds; and three-stone engagement rings with a central emerald flanked by diamonds. There are also emerald cluster rings, which look amazing and the stones help to protect each other; a case of safety in numbers! This does not mean you can be clumsy though, but with such a beautiful piece of jewelry on your hand, you cannot help taking care of it.
Emerald rings certainly are available for any budget, from the expensive natural stones in clusters with diamond or the romantic antique emerald rings, to the more affordable and genuine albeit man-made emeralds, to the cheap but still pretty “false emeralds” or green cubic zirconia. There is something for everybody, but when you get yours, please treat them gently! Find out more and buy Emerald Jewelry.