I often get asked what are the pros and cons of a Bezel Engagement Ring vs. a Prong Engagement Ring and the answer is always "it depends".
Let's take a good look a both and maybe we can help you decide. After all we want your ring to be perfect!
Bezel set engagement rings are known for their security. The setting surrounds the entire stone and edges (girdle) which are often the weakest point of any stone. This setting provides the most protection to the diamond from sides. While looking classy, it is protective and sparkling. The diamond in the center has zero chances of getting chipped or scratched in this particular setting because the sides of the diamond are protected and securely hidden. We often add a decorative milgrain edging to our bezel settings giving them a very feminine and vintage feel and also making them more delicate looking.
A prong set engagement ring is a setting that has small "claws" that are carefully constructed to hold the diamond in place. There are usually four prongs in a setting but on occasion if a stone is larger six prongs may be needed. The prongs allow a little more light to reach the stone and the common theory is that the diamond will sparkle more. This is debatable as a properly bezel set ring can accomplish the same task.
Cognac Diamond Engagement Ring-Bezel Set
The Pros and Cons of a Bezel Engagement Ring
A bezel set engagement ring is going to be more secure for the simple fact that it is protected by more gold all the way around the stone. What this means is that if you pick a diamond with a thin girdle then your best bet would be to bezel set it instead prong set it. The bezel makes sure that your center stone will be protected from impact which is what usually causes chips in your stone. Trust me, I learned this the hard way when my 1ct diamond got chipped while I was working in my jewelry class and had to be cut down to half its size in order to salvage it. It was heart breaking.
Choosing a bezel set engagement ring would be best for those who have an active lifestyle. For example, I have horses. There are a million things a prong setting would catch on in my daily life. Their manes for one. The reins or other gear. I also work out and bike a lot. So my preference is definitely a bezel set ring.
Also, a bezel set engagement ring does not snag on clothes, sweaters and hair which can bend back the prongs of a prong set ring.
There are some cons to a bezel setting. A prong setting is always going to look more "delicate". (Mostly because it is). While a bezel set ring will look more substantial and be heavier. They also may be a little more expensive because they will be using more gold and therefore will weigh more.
There is also the ongoing argument that a Prong Setting will let more light through the stone. But I beg to differ on this point. I have had stones set both ways and they are both equally beautiful.
Penelope Halo Engagement Ring- Prong Set
The Pros and Cons of a Prong Set Engagement Ring
I will let you in on a little secret about Prong Set Engagement Rings. The reason commercial jewelry stores in the 21st century like them so much is that the prongs can fit a wider variety of sizes of diamonds. You don't have to make a custom setting for each stone which it time consuming and costly. You can have one setting that will fit a 5mm to as big as a 6mm stone. So they can just carry a pre-made settings and it will fit a lot of stones. Keep in mind that doesn't mean they fit them well, but they will bend and manipulate the metal to "make them fit".
All of our settings here at Rough Luxe Jewelry are custom made to order and calibrated for each stone. So when you order, first we choose the stone together and then the setting is made exactly for that stone. It fits in like butter. Which makes it more secure. So when choosing a prong setting from us, you can rest assured that it will fit perfectly.
Another positive of prong set engagement rings is that they are easier to clean. Because most of the diamond is exposed, you can get in all the nooks and crannies and make it sparkly new again with very little effort.
A prong set engagement ring will also let more light through to the stone which can be a pro for sure.
The cons should also be considered. A prong set engagement ring is not as secure. Because the diamond is not fully covered with gold there is a higher chance that the diamond can get chipped, loosen or fall out. The way to help prevent this is to have someone check your prong setting every 6 months and re-tip the prongs if necessary if they are showing excessive wear.
The big one for me is that prong settings will snag and catch on things. Especially expensive sweaters. Or dresses. Or in my case hair. The double whammy here is that the snagging and pulling on things can loosen the prongs. So always be aware of this. If you ring gets caught on something, take a quick second and inspect the prongs and see if one has lifted up.
So which one should I choose? Bezel or Prong Set
They both have their pros and cons and I would say it really comes down to your lifestyle. If you are super active you may want more protection that the bezel setting can provide. Here at Rough Luxe Jewelry we have plenty of both styles of rings. We can also change out settings on the center stones to suit you as each ring is customized when ordered. Contact us and we will be happy to help you design your dream ring.