So you are getting married and you need a ring. Whether you have already popped the question or plan on doing it with your ring in hand, there are a lot of different things to consider when you are making a purchase like this.
It is a myth that you should spend three months’ salary on the ring, but you also don’t want to buy something cheap. Not only is it disrespectful to your partner but a cheap stone usually means it came from a conflict-ridden area. When you want to make sure that the ring was ethically sourced and purchased while looking for the perfect piece for your partner, you have a variety of options.
There are a lot of decisions surrounding diamonds. Diamonds are known for being ethically dubious. This is for good reason. The vast majority of “natural” diamonds are mined from conflict zones where a civil war has broken out over these precious resources. While your chances of buying an ethical organic diamond are low, what is wrong with lab-produced diamonds? The answer is next to nothing. They are exactly the same, except they were made by well-paid scientists instead of mined by exploited workers. If you want a diamond, look for a lab-producer and you will have to purchase a lovely, affordable and ethical rock.
A lot like lab-produced diamonds, moissanites are a mineral originally found in Arizona now produced synthetically. They look just like diamonds and some say they are even prettier. They are durable, with a lasting shine, and are almost as strong as diamonds. In fact, diamonds are the only stone stronger than moissanites. Still, they are a lot cheaper than diamonds. You can buy an ethical Kobelli moissanite engagement ring at a fraction of the cost and never skimp on the beauty or size of the stone.
If diamonds and moissanites aren’t your thing, you can buy natural gems from conflict-free places. You should be sure to work with a jeweler that prides themselves on buying stones only from peaceful places. Whether it is a ruby, sapphire, amethyst or another gem you are looking for, if you make sure it was ethically sourced there are many options to choose from. These may be more expensive because they aren’t cheaply mined by poorly treated workers, but you will feel better about purchasing something that didn’t take blood to get it on your finger.
Of course there are also synthetic gems. At a fraction of the price, these stones aren’t the real deal but they certainly look like it. Unlike lab-produced diamonds, they aren’t the real mineral substance but they look great and can be a perfect alternative to unethically produced gems. If your partner isn’t fussy and wants to only have an ethical ring around their finger, synthetic gems are a good thing to look into. You won’t have to worry about blood on your hands.
When it comes to the band or individual karats, recycled gold is a cheaper, responsible alternative. Like diamonds, gold production can be questionable. When you have the opportunity to buy recycled gold, you should take it. All this means is that small pieces of gold were taken and melted down together to create the ring’s band. You can’t be responsible for how the gold was originally sourced, but you will know that you are at least not contributing to the process.
Vintage or used jewelry
Finally, another way to avoid ethical perils and buy an affordable ring is to purchase it second-hand. Used and vintage jewelry may have been originally sourced unethically, but you won’t have blood on your hands because it was already produced. Not only will you feel better about it, used and vintage jewelry can be both beautiful and affordable. When it comes to an engagement ring, don’t overlook your used options.
Getting married is a big deal and the engagement ring should reflect that. You want to buy something your partner deserves but you also want it at a reasonable price and in an ethical way. When you consider these options, there are actually a lot of avenues to buy a ring and feel good about it. Do a little research, show due diligence, think about your purchase and you will find the perfect ring for your partner.