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Is a Diamond or a Sapphire Engagement Ring Right for You?

June 13, 2022 3 min read

Is a Diamond or a Sapphire Engagement Ring Right for You?

Choosing the gemstone for an heirloom-quality ring is possibly the most important choice you'll make, after all, this ring will be worn for a lifetime and more. We recommend following your heart rather than letting tradition or trends sway your decisions. Diamonds and sapphires are our most common stones to work with for engagement or heirloom rings. Although diamonds have reigned supreme in engagement rings for generations, sapphires have become more popular in recent years with the resurgence of Princess Diana’s iconic blue sapphire ring now being worn by Kate Middleton. Let’s dive into the distinct benefits of each stone for a ring, and which might be right for you. If you're looking to design your own custom ring with either of these stones, you can read about the process and submit an inquiry here.


Diamonds are the traditional stone for an engagement ring, and with good reason. They are the hardest stone on the Mohs Scale of Hardness, a 10, meaning they will be durable enough for a lifetime of everyday wear. A colorless diamond matches every outfit, but diamonds also come in champagne types or in shades of gray or brown for variety. 

At VM we work with diamonds of many faceting types including rose-cut, modern brilliant-cut diamonds, step-cut diamonds, and antique-cut diamonds. Today, diamonds are cut in a variety of fancy shapes to stand out from the crowd: half moons, hexagons, shields, trillions, marquise, pears, and ovals to name a few. We broke down some benefits of this different faceting types below:

  • Rose-cut is perfect if you want a minimalist sleek look:  Softer sparkle, best in incandescent light. They create a vintage romantic look. 
  • Modern Brilliant-cut diamonds are known for being cut for optical brilliance! 
  • Step-cut diamonds are sleek, architectural, and modern. They evoke an art-deco feel.
  • Antique-cuts like European cut and Old Mine-cut diamonds were cut to sparkle under candlelight. They have so much character and history to add to your own love story. 


Sapphires are a 9 on the Mohs Scale - only after diamonds - and come in a variety of colors. Valerie Madison has many clients who like sapphires to incorporate their “something blue” into their big day. “In folklore, history, art, and consumer awareness, sapphire has always been associated with the color blue." (GIA)

Although known for their blues, sapphires come in every shade and complement skin tones differently. Sapphires are perfect for an individual who wants to make a unique statement.  Color allows the wearer to express a mood.  Warm colors like fuschia, light pink, raspberry, peach, purple, and burnt orange often remind wearers of spring blooms or autumn.  Cool colors tend to ground us, such as teal, light blue, cornflower blue, moss greens, and steel greys. Like blue jeans, they read as an everyday color while still being one-of-a-kind. We have had clients select cool colors inspired by their partner’s eyes, the environment they grew up in, or like princess Diana’s ring, drawn to a statement that breaks tradition yet feels timeless. 

Whichever color captures your heart, you will have a one-of-a-kind ring that is an extension of your personality. If you do not see a sapphire in the color, cut, and weight you prefer available on our site, then we will gladly source a custom curation for you. You can read more about the custom route here to get started.

Diamond vs. Sapphire Comparison 






10; excellent for everyday wear

9; excellent for everyday wear


Colorless, champagne, brown, gray, and fancy colors

Blue, green, pink, peach, yellow, purple, orange.



Rapidly rising

Cut Brilliant Cut, Rose Cut, Step Cut, Euro Cut, Old Mine Cut Most typically cut in brilliant and step cut faceting patterns



$$-$$$+ (depending on size and rarity of color)

Best For Those looking for the most classic choice Those interested in expressing themselves in a unique way