The general consensus regarding the budget for an engagement ring is that a man is expected to spend around two month’s salary. For most people, this is a considerable amount of money and something that they can’t necessarily afford in the current economic climate. What’s more, knowing that a wedding is also likely to cost several thousand pounds, this expectation could be putting some men off popping the question in the first place! Here at Marlow’s, we believe that what matters more is your love and commitment towards your partner, and not the amount of money you spend on a ring.

So, why does this consensus of two months’ salary exist? Unsurprisingly, it was a marketing ploy by De Beers, specialists in diamond rings in the early 20th century. They wanted to sell more diamonds and so suggested that men spend around one month’s salary on engagement rings for their brides-to-be, which was subsequently increased to two months. For some reason, this ploy worked and the idea has been floating around ever since.

Before you take one look at your bank balance and start to panic, however, this isn’t a myth that has necessarily stuck. More recent research has found that most engagement rings now cost more like three weeks’ salary. The study found that one in eight men have consciously decided to spend less on the ring, and two thirds of those questioned spent less than a month’s wages on the ring. Just over a third (38%) would actually tell their fiancée what the cost of the ring was, while another three percent actually fib about the true cost! There is no reason why you should tell your fiancée what the cost of the ring is, of course, but we’re sure that she won’t care. The ring is a symbol of your love for her, regardless of the cost.

When you go looking for the perfect ring, our advice is to first look for a ring which appeals to you and then look at the price to see if it comes in under budget. If you find that you keep looking at rings way out of your price range, you may have to change this strategy, however! The price of a ring is affected by a number of different factors, with round brilliant diamond engagement rings usually having the highest price tag. If you’re set on this style of ring, then opt for a lesser colour, carat weight or clarity to drop the price. Similarly, choosing a different metal for the band of the ring will alter the price. Use the sliding scales on our website against each of our ring designs to get your preferred ring at the price you can afford by altering the carat, colour and clarity.

Where possible, obviously try and choose a style that your future fiancée will love. This is something she’s going to be wearing for the rest of her life, so it should be something she wants to look at! Always keep in mind that an engagement ring will always hold more sentimental than financial value for the wearer and will be something she will treasure forever.