Once you’ve had the conversation of ‘are we headed for marriage?’ it’s expected that at some point a proposal will happen. More and more couples are opting to pick out the engagement ring together rather than have this element be a surprise. You may be wondering if it’s a good idea to help your partner pick your ring, or if you should let them go forth and choose for themselves. Well, as always, it depends.

Doing it Together

On the one hand, some say that choosing a ring together ruins the surprise. You’ll know what ring to expect and the proposal won’t be as meaningful if you know it’s coming. On the other hand, if you help your partner find the ring, you’re guaranteed to get a ring you love.

Allowing your Partner to Pick the Ring

The pros and cons for this option are the exact opposite of our previous point – this time, you get to be surprised but you may end up with a ring you hate!

Pick your Engagement Ring

Photo Courtesy of Amos Photography

The trick is keeping the best of both worlds…

The Compromise

In reality, a proposal will never be 100% unexpected – even if you’ve never talked about it outright, if you’re in a committed relationship, it’s likely to happen. With that in mind, it’s easy to find middle ground when selecting your engagement ring. Here are some dos and don’ts when picking a ring:

Do – Be clear about style: Head to Pinterest and look at all the pretty things to get inspiration and get a sense of what you and your partner like and don’t like. Are you a timeless solitaire person? Or maybe you prefer a more unique ring. This will give your partner some ideas while keeping the final product a surprise.

Don’t – Expect your partner to be a mind reader: If there is something you absolutely do not want from your engagement ring – say so! If your partner has style, they may be trusted to pick out a ring on their own however if there are any elements that are deal breakers for you, you need to tell them, or risk being disappointed.

Do – Try on rings: Online shopping is fine, but you never really know how something looks until it’s on your finger. Head to a boutique with your partner, friend or even by yourself to try on rings. This will give you a sense of budget, as well as what feels good on your hand.

Don’t – Have unrealistic expectations: Most of us won’t be shopping for a 15ct. boulder like Kim and Kanye, so if your ring is inspired by a celebrity couple, be realistic about what your actual ring will look like and don’t be mad when your partner isn’t dropping upwards of $4 million (yep) on your ring.

Do – What feels right: It doesn’t have to be all or nothing! If you really want the proposal to be a surprise, you can trust your partner to choose and ring, and then exchange it if necessary when the time comes. Or, have a trusted friend deliver your perfect ring to your partner so they can surprise you with it. The options, truly, are endless, but make sure that whatever you do, is right for you and your partner.