As you’re picking out your perfect engagement ring, you have a lot to consider. Most people know to think about details like ring style, center stone shape, the 4Cs, and precious metal when shopping for their engagement ring, But there’s one very important detail that many people overlook when picking out an engagement ring: their setting profile.
An engagement ring’s setting profile is, essentially, how high it comes off your finger. A ring’s setting profile will fall into one of two categories: high or low. Whether a ring is high set or low set will affect not only the look of your ring, but also how comfortable and practical it will be to wear.
Since your engagement ring’s setting profile can affect both style and wearability, you should carefully consider setting profile before you choose your engagement ring. To help you do just that, below, we’re going over everything you need to know about high and low set engagement rings.
Understanding High Set vs. Low Set Profiles
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Whether a ring is high set or low set depends on where its center stone lies. If you look at a ring from the side and its center diamond or gemstone is elevated high off the band, it’s a high set ring. If its center stone is fairly close to the band, it’s low set.
If you’re unsure whether a ring you’re looking at is high or low set, try looking at where its center gemstone’s culet (the point at the bottom of a diamond or gemstone) rests. If the culet of the center stone is close to or almost touching the inner edge of the ring’s band, it’s a low set ring. If there is a lot of space between the center stone’s culet and the inner edge of the ring’s band, it’s a high set ring.
The Pros and Cons of High Set Engagement Rings
Many people love high set engagement rings because they have more wow factor. When your gemstones are raised up off of your band, they’re more eye-catching. Brilliant gemstones, such as diamonds, can also look even more brilliant in high settings, since they can capture and reflect more light.
Another reason people love high engagement ring settings is their versatility. High settings work beautifully with many engagement ring styles, as well as with both large and small gemstones. So, you have a lot of engagement ring options to choose from if you’re interested in a high set ring. High settings can also make it easier to create a bridal set. If your ring setting is raised off of your band, your band won’t curve out, allowing you to easily rest standard wedding rings flush against your band.
While high engagement ring settings are glamorous and versatile, they also come with some potential drawbacks. High settings are more vulnerable to damage, since they’re easier to scrape or bump. High prong set rings are also more likely to snag clothing. Then, you’ll generally need to take high set rings off when you do certain common tasks, like cleaning or gardening, in order to avoid damaging your ring and/or to use your hands more comfortably. How you feel about needing to take off your ring is very personal. But it’s worth pointing out that people with more active lifestyles may find this more irritating than others, since they’ll need to take off their ring more frequently.
The Pros and Cons of Low Set Engagement Rings
The main advantage of low set engagement rings is how comfortable and low maintenance they are. Low profile settings are less likely to get damaged from an accidental bump or scrape, less likely to get snagged on your clothing, and they’re just generally more durable and wearable. That’s why people who work with their hands tend to prefer low set engagement rings (especially ones with bezel settings instead of prong settings, since bezel settings don’t snag on clothing).
Though low set engagement rings are very comfortable and wearable, they do come with cons. One con of low set engagement rings is that they have less visual impact when compared to high set rings. Gemstones may look less sparkly and eye-catching when they are close to your band. Another con of low set engagement rings is that they’re less versatile. Low settings can’t accommodate larger stones, so you have to stick to lower carat weight diamonds and gemstones when you choose a low setting. Additionally, low set rings often curve out on their upper shank, which means you would be limited to curved wedding bands if you want a flush fitting bridal set.
Are High Or Low Profile Engagement Rings Better?
Ultimately, whether a high profile ring or a low profile ring is right for you is very personal. Neither of these design options is inherently better than the other, but one may be a better choice for you depending on your aesthetic tastes and lifestyle.
Final Thoughts on High Profile vs. Low Profile Engagement Rings
We hope that this guide to high set vs. low set engagement rings has been helpful as you consider which of these beautiful options would be your best fit. If you have any questions about engagement ring setting profiles that aren’t answered in our guide, please feel free to reach out. One of our team members would be happy to assist you. Additionally, if you’d like to try on some high set and low set diamond engagement rings to get a feel for their differences, stop by our showroom here in Los Angeles. We carry a diverse selection of diamond engagement ring settings that includes bezel set and prong set solitaire engagement rings, halo diamond rings, three stone styles, and much more. We’d love to help you try on a range of styles and setting profiles so that you can find your perfect match.