You’re picking out an engagement ring and you’re trying to decide what’s best. Should you go for diamonds or other gemstones? The choice is often personal and may come down to style as well.

Garnet is an interesting choice. It comes in a variety of colours, which offers flexibility in the design. It’s also earthier in nature. Some people like this, while others think it comes off somewhat dull-looking. If you’ve got a design that can use garnet’s earthiness, it’s a good choice. If you lack this, it’s a bit risky since the stone on its own lacks diamond’s flourish and flash.

Moissanite is very rare and is sometimes synthetically made because of this. It carries much of the same look of a diamond, but it doesn’t interact with light quite the same way. If it’s important your gemstone come from the earth itself and not a lab, moissanite can be more difficult to get hold of. Because of its similarity to a diamond, your fiancee may be stuck explaining what exactly moissanite is.

Morganite is often used as an engagement ring alternative. It’s a mix of orange and pink in colour, giving the stone in the ring a colour akin to rose gold. It can look a little dull on its own, however. Morganite looks particularly good set alongside diamonds, where the clear white crystals complement the morganite’s rosy colour and the two bring out each other’s brilliance – much like you and your fiancee do for each other.

Tanzanite is a brilliant alternative that essentially announces itself the second you step into a room with it. It’s 1,000 times rarer than diamonds are. It’s only sourced from one place in the world – near Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania. It’s a rich purplish-blue that makes the stone seem especially deep. This is another stone that – when ringed with diamonds to bring out its colour – genuinely excels.

Tsavorite is another more recent diamond alternative. It’s a garnet variety that’s tremendously green. For fiancees whose favourite colour is green, it’s a good choice. Just be warned it can trend a little more toward lime green than forest green. If this isn’t a problem, it’s a solid choice.

And diamonds? Well, they’re a traditional and longstanding choice for a reason. They communicate very clearly what your desire is. They refract and reflect light in a way no other gemstone really can, and they communicate to the world very readily their intended purpose.

One of the pitfalls of getting something that looks similar to diamond is facing a situation where you have to explain what the alternative gemstone is. Some people are very comfortable with this and take pride in sharing with others the gemstone that’s special to them. Others may find this kind of explanation uncomfortable. There’s no right or wrong answer to the question – you should go with what’s right for you and your fiancee. Best of all, if you’re not sure, you can always combine an alternate stone with diamonds for the best of both worlds.

The nature of diamonds means that they’re the best gemstones to bring out the colour and characteristics of other gemstones. A choice like this allows you to highlight another gem your fiancee may be fond of, while also featuring diamonds alongside it. Both stone choices are highlighted for some truly impressive rings this way.