You wanted to get the right ring, so you asked your significant other to tag along to the jewelry store. But while "taking your partner with you to go engagement ring shopping may simplify the ring selection process, it adds more work to the proposal planning," says Michele Valazquez, owner of proposal planning service The Heart Bandits. "Once you go ring shopping together, she knows a proposal is imminent, and you are going to have to work that much harder to surprise her with the event."
Before you get glum, here's the good news: "In truth, whether you picked out a ring together or not, most people know a proposal is coming because most people have 'the talk' or the sense they are headed in that direction," Valazquez says. "So just because you picked the ring together doesn't mean she knows how or when you will propose." So to get you started, here are some expert-approved ways to help you plan a proposal that will still surprise and delight your significant other.
Avoid proposing on a holiday.
Popping the question can add excitement to an already joyous day, but "if your significant other knows you have the ring, big holidays like Christmas are times he or she will definitely be expecting it," warns Sarah Glick, proposal planner at Brilliant Even Planning.
Send him or her off your scent.
While we normally wouldn't encourage lying, now's the time to tell a white one or two. For example, "say the ring isn't ready yet and propose before she thinks it is," suggests Valazquez, "or say you are going on a business trip, but secretly plan her proposal that weekend."
Keep the ring out of view.
"Don't keep the ring at your house if you live together," Glick says. Instead, ask a friend or family member to store it for you. "If your significant other knows you have the ring, he or she might be keeping an eye out for it," Glick explains. "Not finding it is a sure way to throw him or her off."
Consider a "slow burn" proposal.
We're not talking about heartburn here. With a slow burn proposal, "you use a slow build-up to the big moment to your advantage," says Glick. Think: "A scavenger hunt through your love story, or treating him or her to a day of luxury before you pop the question."