Does size really matter? It’s an age-old question that humans have pondered for generations in a variety of contexts, including in reference to the size of one’s engagement ring diamond. In decades past, the size of the ring was the “be-all, end-all” due to societal pressures, and other engagement ring features like cut, clarity, color, and setting style took a back seat.
However, in 2021, is it still the size that matters most or have other facets of an engagement ring like quality, brilliance, and style become most important? How do opinions about diamond size vary by gender, generation, relationship status, and even location?
In our pursuit of answers to these burning questions and more, we asked 3,462 Americans to weigh in. Shane Co. surveyed respondents across various demographics and all 50 states to uncover how much an engagement ring’s diamond size really matters when it comes to proposals. Other questions posed include:
- What is the ideal carat size of an engagement ring?
- Would the diamond size impact your likeliness to accept a proposal from your partner?
- Would you consider upgrading your diamond’s carat size over time?
Read on to see the full survey results and where your state lands on diamond size!
The States Where Large Diamond Sizes Matter Most (and Least)
To start, we asked respondents in all 50 states to rate the significance of an engagement ring’s diamond size on a scale of 1 to 5 (where 1 = low significance and 5 = high significance). The national average rating overall was 2.47 — a bit lower than anticipated.
With an average rating of 3.18, 28.8% above the national average, Tennessee is the state where residents care about diamond size the most, followed by New Jersey (3.16), Texas (3.14), and Connecticut (3.08). Out of the 10 states where large diamonds matter most in engagement rings, four states are located in the Northeast, and three states are located in the South.
Alternatively, certain states gave diamond size incredibly low significance when it comes to engagement rings. With an average rating of 1.90, 22.8% below the national average, Montana is the state where residents care about diamond size the least, followed by Wyoming (1.96), Iowa (1.98), and Mississippi (2.0).
Diamond Size Significance by Gender & Relationship Status
Next, we looked at diamond size significance by demographics such as gender and relationship status. Ironically, men and proposers care more about the diamond size of an engagement ring than do women and “proposees”(i.e., the people being proposed to). 61% of men and a strong 70% of proposers think the diamond size is important when it comes to engagement rings, whereas only 47% of women and 46% of “proposees” think the diamond size is truly important.
According to Cosmo, “women are gravitating towards smaller diamonds now” and are prioritizing features like radiance, setting style, and stone shape above simply having a big rock. New engagement ring trends like stackable rings, yellow gold bands, and vintage settings all featuring smaller stones play a role as well. Wearability in multiple social settings, theft, and security are some of the other reasons people are opting for a smaller diamond.
What Is the Most Important Feature of an Engagement Ring?
When asking which feature of an engagement ring is most important, more people say shape than size. The largest percentage of respondents (almost 20%) say the diamond shape is most important, followed by carat size (16.6%), clarity (14.5%), and color (12.7%).
The diamond’s shape is particularly important as it sets the tone for the style of a ring. For instance, princess and emerald cuts evoke an Art Deco vibe. Marquise cuts feel vintage, and cushion cuts are best for a classic, more traditional look.
When asking which factor is most important while engagement ring shopping, the largest portion of respondents (32%) say beauty/style, followed by quality (29%) and durability (17%). When it comes down to it, aesthetics triumph above all else. The majority of us want to look down at a beautiful ring that matches our taste levels, personality, and sense of style.
Engagement Ring Statistics: According to Popular Opinion
Surprisingly, 4.3 out of every 10 people say that the diamond size would impact their likeliness of saying “yes” or “no” when being proposed to. 36% of people even admit they would go as far as asking their partner to purchase a larger carat size if they felt unsatisfied. Tough crowd!
The diamond size is far less likely to deter a divorced respondent from accepting a proposal than an engaged respondent. 46% of engaged respondents say that a diamond’s carat size would impact their likeliness to accept a proposal from their partner whereas only 7% of divorced respondents would say the same.
Lastly, the largest portion of respondents say the ideal diamond is 1 to 2 carats and costs anywhere from $1,001 to $5,000 — a range that sits just below Real Simple’s estimated average price of an engagement ring, $5,600.
That wraps up our study on diamond size significance! We’ve learned that depending on geography and demographics, diamond size can be inconsequential or it can be an ultimate deal-breaker! In 2021, we can only hope that at the end of the day Americans will place their relationships above all else.
Know your ideal diamond size and ready to start ring shopping? Shop our Perfectly Preset Engagement Rings or start designing your own!
The diamond size survey ran from January 25 – February 3, 2021.