Eternity rings have become one of the more popular and meaningful gifts of the century. Handed as a gift for essential relationship milestones, women often receive an eternity band on special occasions.
As the name implies, eternity rings, especially those encrusted with diamonds and other gemstones, symbolize undying commitment and love. These jewelry pieces often complement a couple’s wedding band and a woman’s engagement ring.
Whether you are planning to buy one as a meaningful gift or to wear it yourself, keep reading to learn how to buy the right eternity ring.
Because they convey eternal commitment and undying love, eternity rings are also known as infinity rings. These invaluable ornaments feature a precious metal band and are encrusted with precious gems—often diamonds—in a full circle all around the ring. This style and the sparkly stones evoke a sense of eternity. The metal band and the rare gems come in different settings and various shapes to reflect either traditional or unconventional designs based on the wearer’s preference.
But how did this gift-giving custom begin? The idea of using eternity rings was said to have originated from the ancient Egyptians around 4,000 years ago. In those periods, eternity rings served as a symbol of everlasting love and life, rather than a memorable and celebratory symbol for a particular occasion as it’s often known today. Eternity bands weren't always made of metal in those days. These rings were made from braided reeds or carved bone, and featured beads, carvings, and precious stones. Some ancient Egyptian eternity rings featured the ouroboros (a snake swallowing its tail), which symbolized endless return or continuous rebirth.
Thousands of years later, the concept of eternal love remains, albeit in a more streamlined design. Precious metal bands and equally rare mined stones known for their strength and durability replaced indigenous materials. In the 19th century, diamond eternity bands were introduced into the market but didn’t gain popularity until the 1960s.
Besides anniversaries, this ring symbolizes the circle of life, making it a fitting gift to new mothers. However, some couples decide to break the tradition; a woman doesn’t have to be married to receive this priceless accessory. Couples celebrating a milestone outside of marriage can give each other an eternity ring representing the relationship’s past, present, and future. Simply put, any special occasion that calls for a memorable gift is an excuse to give this remarkable piece.
Because jewelry making is an art form, artisans can create highly customized eternity rings to fit a wearer’s preferences. Eternity rings, for instance, come in different shapes and settings. Suppose your significant other finds round-shaped diamonds dull. Eternity rings are available in any diamond shape - you can easily find oval-cut diamond eternity rings, marquise-cut diamond eternity rings, and more. While diamond eternity rings are the most popular, they can also feature other colored gemstones as well, like sapphire or ruby.
Check out the most popular types of eternity ring settings, shapes, and styles below:
In terms of form, there are two major classifications of eternity rings—the full eternity or the half eternity band. Traditional infinity rings are adorned with stones all around the band, earning the name full eternity ring. However, some wearers find the diamonds around the band a tad uncomfortable to wear. In addition, full eternity rings cannot be resized or engraved. It’s vital to get the correct ring size because of this. The presence of extra stones means higher maintenance, which makes half eternity bands a better option in some cases.
Half eternity rings have stones only halfway and not around the band, and apart from this, there’s not much difference between them. In terms of cost, half eternity bands are cheaper than full eternity rings, although the latter is more sparkly and looks more elegant. If you’re worried about having to resize your ring in the future, consider getting a half eternity ring.
Natural diamonds take billions of years to form under the Earth’s surface. Extreme pressure and high temperatures work together to create this precious gem, which is then pushed upward through volcanic activity. Diamonds comprise pure carbon, although they can also contain nitrogen (responsible for giving it a yellowish tinge) and boron (responsible for its bluish hue). Some diamonds also have small foreign materials that found their way to the crystal during the formation process.
On the other hand, synthetic diamonds—or those created in the laboratory—were first made in the 1950s for industrial applications. It wasn’t until five decades later that these manufactured sparklers found their way into the jewelry industry. And while natural diamonds take billions of years to form, lab-created jewels take less than a month to create. As such, eternity rings with lab-created diamonds cost much less than natural diamond-encrusted accessories.
Depending on your priorities and preference, you can either purchase an infinity band with natural or man-made diamonds in it. If you’re concerned with sustainability and cost, it’s better to consider eternity rings with man-made diamonds. Below is a price comparison so you can see the difference in price between lab and natural diamond eternity rings:
The lab diamond version is over $3,000 cheaper than the natural diamond version.
Apart from the size and cut, the actual design and setting of the eternity ring can impact its price. The setting is vital in amplifying the diamond’s sparkle and brilliance. It can also impact the overall style of the ring. There’s a vast array of designs and settings available such as the following:
Most common design choice for eternity rings. Prong settings feature tiny claws to hold the stone in place. Prong settings are typically the most affordable since less metal is used.
Small stones are set close together and secured by tiny beads, creating the appearance of a band that is paved with diamonds.
Channel-set eternity rings are the most secure option. In this setting, the stones are mounted securely between two metal strips. Channel-set eternity rings are a great choice for someone who has an active lifestyle since channel-set diamonds are less likely to become lost. Since more precious metal is used to create this style of ring, it can be pricier than other eternity ring styles.
This setting style features a circle of metal framing the diamond. This is also a very secure setting style, making it a great choice for someone who is active with their hands or rough with their jewelry. Like channel settings, bezel settings can be a little pricier since they require more precious metal and a great level of expertise to set each diamond.
There’s no right or wrong eternity ring setting, and the setting style really depends on the wearer’s preference.
As mentioned earlier, an eternity ring can feature any diamond shape. Here are some of the most popular diamond shapes used in eternity rings.
Oval-cut diamonds provide a flattering effect on the finger - they create the illusion of a longer, more slender finger. Oval diamonds will guarantee an incredibly sparkly eternity ring. To purchase an oval diamond eternity ring, contact us today.
When you are shopping for an eternity ring, the carat weight listed is the ring's total carat weight. So for example, if you see a 1-carat diamond eternity band for sale, all of the stones in the band will add up to 1 carat. While carat weight does affect the price of your eternity ring (of course, a ring with larger diamonds will be more expensive), so does your ring size, since more diamonds and more metal is needed to craft a larger ring, even though the total carat weight will still say the same.
TIP: For an eternity ring that appears to be a larger total carat weight, choose elongated diamond shapes for your eternity ring, such as the emerald-cut, radiant-cut, and oval-cut. These elongated shapes
Here are some of the most popular carat weights selected for eternity rings:
Luxurious yet at a more accessible price point, a 2-carat eternity band is perfect for stacking with other rings. The price of a 2-carat eternity ring will vary on many factors, including diamond origin, diamond quality, metal, and ring size, but you can expect to spend anywhere from $1,800 to $5,000 or more.
A 3-carat eternity band is an elegant choice. This size will still stack easily with other rings. Again, the price of a 3-carat eternity ring will vary depending on the aforementioned factors, but you can expect to spend anywhere from $2,500 to $7,000 or more.
A 4-carat eternity band will stand out on your finger. A 4-carat eternity ring can cost anywhere from $4,000 to $11,000 or more depending on the diamond's shape and origin, the metal used, finger size, and more.
Like design and cut, the choice of metal depends on the user’s personal choice. If worn together with the wedding and engagement rings, the precious metal used for an eternity ring should complement the former. Durability should also be paramount, as these accessories must withstand daily use.
Below are the most common metal options to hold diamonds and other precious stones:
Pure gold, which comes in 24K, is soft. That’s why it’s mixed with other types of metal to make it more durable. Eternity metal bands are commonly made from 14K to18K gold. The karat quality indicates the proportion of gold in relation to the other metals. For instance, a 14K gold contains 14 parts gold and 10 parts alloy metal. Often, you’ll see a karat marking engraved in the band. 18k gold will be slightly more expensive than 14k gold since there is more gold content in it.
Yellow gold is mixed with other precious metals such as silver or palladium to change its color and create white gold. Rhodium is often coated to give the metal a shinier appearance. White gold will lose its rhodium plating over time and need to be replated, making white gold slightly more high maintenance than other metal types. Eternity rings are typically created with 14kt white gold or 18kt white gold.
Platinum is very durable, as well as hypoallergenic. Since platinum is very rare, it is also much more expensive than gold. A plat. 900 mark inside your infinity ring indicates it’s made from 90% platinum and 10% other metals, including palladium, rhodium, and iridium.
There are many different eternity ring styles, but these are the ones that you will come across the most.
When you think of an eternity ring, this is likely the exact style that comes to mind: diamonds of the same size are lined up next to each other in a streamlined fashion. This is by far the most common eternity ring style.
East to West eternity bands feature diamonds lined horizontally in the band rather than vertically. This style is typically used for elongated diamond shapes, such as the emerald-cut, radiant-cut or pear-cut.
Cluster eternity bands employ extra diamonds rather than a simple row of diamonds for a truly unique look.
Getting a precise measurement for your ring size is crucial before purchasing an eternity ring—or practically any ring, for that matter. Common knowledge suggests using a string or a paper, wrapping it around the ring finger, cutting it along the portion where it overlaps and, finally, referring to the size chart to get the actual measurement.
The GIA, however, discourages the use of these methods as they can lead to inaccuracies, being that a string can stretch and paper can shrink. To get the correct measurement, the said institute suggests the ring buyers follow these procedures:
Ask help from your jeweler who’ll use a set of finger gauges to get the most comfortable fit.
Borrow your partner’s ring and press it on a wet bar of soap to create an impression. Take the bar of soap to the jewelry shop.
Get your significant other’s ring and trace the inside of the band on a piece of paper.
Ask a close friend or a family member who knows your partner’s ring size.
Ritani offers free ring sizers. Get it shipped to you for free - just contact customer service to get started.
Most people wear the eternity band on the ring finger of the left hand and as an addition to the engagement and wedding rings. Typically, people wear their wedding ring first, then their engagement ring followed by their eternity ring. But it’s not a hard and fast rule. Take heed of the following considerations before putting it on:
Assess the size, shape, and metal band: The best way to make sure that the eternity ring goes well with the other accessories is to consider the band’s fit and shape. Round-cut eternity rings are the most popular and pair easily with the diamond shapes in your engagement and wedding ring. Thinner eternity bands will be easier to stack with other rings. As for the metal, most people choose a metal that matches their engagement ring and wedding band, but this isn’t a hard and fast rule - mixing metals can provide a lovely look.
Wear it where it’s comfortable: Sometimes, wearing three rings on one finger can be uncomfortable, especially if your wedding and engagement bands are thick. If the rings don’t fit nicely together, try wearing the eternity ring on the ring finger of your right hand.
Eternity rings symbolize eternal commitment, which means they can serve as a wedding ring too. Some couples purchase wedding rings that double as an eternity ring in style, design, and function.
Eternity rings are a beautiful and fitting gift for relationship milestones, such as the birth of a child or a wedding anniversary. Because jewelers can customize these pieces according to the wearer’s preference and comfort, they’ve become the most brilliant reminders of undying commitment and everlasting love.