They don't call it a classic for nothing. Sure, we love a trend-driven sparkler, but nothing says, "I'm engaged" quite like a classic engagement ring. Defined by simplicity and sophistication, these rings are called classics for a reason; a traditional diamond cut with a no-frills design never goes out of style. "Trend-driven styles are great if you are committed to these elements and committed to loving them for the duration," explains jewelry designer Corina Madilian. "If you are picking something of the moment just because you are currently seeing and liking it, you may not feel the same down the line, which is perfectly fine if you are comfortable knowing you may be resetting your stone or replacing the ring entirely when you are over it." Trends come and go, but a classic diamond ring is, as they say, forever.
Meet the Expert
Corina Madilian is one half of the husband and wife duo behind Single Stone. With over 15 years of designing jewelry for the brand and over 30 years in the industry, Madilian is an expert in creating timeless, heirloom-quality styles and restoring antique pieces.
They're no-thrills, in a good way, and cut (no pun intended) straight to the point, making sure that diamond beams off your finger. Plus, you're obviously planning on wearing that rock around your finger for the rest of your life, so it only makes sense to choose something you will still love when you're celebrating your 50th wedding anniversary. "Pick from the heart," advises Madilian. "Find a ring that you love and speaks to you. Don't get too caught up in the specifics of a center stone only. I encourage my clients to pick something they love, within their budget, and not to focus too much on what they think they 'should' be buying."
In any setting (from a sleek band to sparkling diamond pavé) it's a simple, elegant, and timeless statement, and we've rounded up the best of the bunch. Break the bank or don't, we've got something for budgets of all sizes. From round cut (the perennial favorite) to oval shaped, emerald cut, radiant cut, and princess cut, you'll gush over these rings 'til death do you part. Scroll through to see all of our favorite classic engagement rings.
Anna Sheffield Hazeline Solitaire Engagement Ring
A treasure to be passed down to future generations inspired by the designer's very own family heirloom. Modeled after Anna Sheffield's grandmother's wedding ring, the design exudes a vintage elegance that can usually only be found in estate pieces. A century-old, white solitaire diamond is fringed by diamond accents and set in 14k gold.
SHOP NOW: Anna Sheffield, from $6,180
Anna Sheffield Hazeline Three-Stone Engagement Ring
Similar to the heirloom-inspired solitaire, this three-stone engagement ring has all the makings of a family treasure. A white solitaire diamond is flanked by diamond side stones and set in 14k yellow gold. The delicate proportions of the band perfectly balance out the heaviness that can sometimes be present in three-stone designs.
SHOP NOW: Anna Sheffield, $12,800
Beverly K Style R9425(A) Halo Engagement Ring
A round diamond is framed by milgrain detailing and a diamond pavé halo. The negative space between the halo and the center stone creates the illusion of a floating gem, untethered by the mount. The ring is set in a choice of platinum or 18k gold.
SHOP NOW: Brilliant Diamonds, price upon request
Single Stone London Ring
"A classic three-stone, emerald-cut ring is always a favorite," says Madilian. "The simple lines of the shank and prongs make this a classic option for someone preferring a timeless ring." An emerald-cut diamond center stone is flanked by two diamond baguettes on each side, set in 18k yellow gold.
SHOP NOW: Single Stone, $10,500
Monique Lhuillier Three-Stone Trio Micropavé Diamond Engagement Ring
No one knows bridal fashion better than Monique Lhullier, so who better to design an engagement ring? With a diamond center stone flanked by diamond side stones and a platinum band completely encrusted with micropavé diamonds, the ring is very much inspired by her distinctive couture pieces.
SHOP NOW: Blue Nile, from $3,890
Christopher Designs Crisscut Cushion Engagement Ring
Cushion cuts are known for their sweet shape and compounded brilliance. Here, a cushion-cut diamond is framed by a pavé halo, adding to the overall glimmer of the design. The mounting sits on a channel-set pavé band of 18k white gold.
SHOP NOW: Merry Richards Jewelers, price upon request
Style LC6088 Engagement Ring Setting
A double dose of the heavenly goodness that is a glittering halo. This style features a diamond center stone surrounded by two pavé halos and encrusted shank, set in a choice of platinum or gold.
SHOP NOW: Coast Diamond, from $1,905
DY Astor Engagement Ring
A timeless design with a decidedly fresh approach. The oval center stone is horizontally set, rather than vertically positioned in the conventional style. The oval diamond is surrounded by pavé accents and a platinum double band.
SHOP NOW: David Yurman, price upon request
DY Crossover Micropavé Engagement Ring
A traditional mainstay takes on a delicate disposition with a split shank and negative space giving off a dainty look. The cushion-cut center diamond seems to be mounted on a crossed micropavé double band, set in platinum.
SHOP NOW: David Yurman, price upon request
DY Unity Cable Engagement Ring
David Yurman's iconic cable designs are symbolic of the emotional connection in a relationship—the perfect sentiment for an engagement ring. Here, a diamond solitaire is set on an 18k yellow gold cable band.
SHOP NOW: David Yurman, price upon request
De Beers The Promise 18 Interweaving Rose Gold Diamond Ring
Timeless sophistication, but make it modern. This contemporary design is comprised of two bands interlocking to create one unified band—there's that matrimonial symbolism again. A diamond center stone sits on the two joined bands of smooth and pavé encrusted textures, set in 18k rose gold.
SHOP NOW: De Beers, $2,500
Single Stone Camille Ring
"The marquis diamond in this ring is warm in color and moody, which is really enhanced by the color of the metal," explains Madilian. "The curved shape of this ring softens the points of the marquis making it a romantic option for someone liking today's popular oval shape." A marquis-shaped diamond is vertically-set in a frame of handcrafted 18k yellow gold and diamonds. A diamond-accented band finishes off the design.
SHOP NOW: Single Stone, $10,300
De Beers Aura Cushion-Cut Diamond Ring
Halos are exceptional at maximizing a center stone by creating the illusion of higher carat weight, which makes them ideal for stretching a ring budget. Here, a cushion-cut diamond solitaire is framed by a micropavé halo and set on platinum micropavé band.
SHOP NOW: De Beers, from $5,350
Forevermark Integre Cascade Engagement Ring
A classic design transforms into a whimsical display with a scalloped halo of diamonds providing a frilly, floral-like texture. A diamond solitaire is framed by the halo and set on a pavé band of white gold.
SHOP NOW: Forevermark, $2,600
Gabriel & Co. Round Three-Stone Halo Diamond Engagement Ring (Setting)
This dazzling piece does not disappoint on the glitter. A round center stone with a diamond pavé halo is flanked by half-moon side stones, and set on an 18k white gold pavé band.
SHOP NOW: Gabriel & Co., from $6,930
Jennie Kwon Diamond Hope Ring
A feminine and dainty style to truly withstand the test of time. A diamond solitaire is flanked by a row of three diamond accent stones on each side, and set on the most delicate 14k yellow gold band.
SHOP NOW: Twist, $3,450
Sholdt Emerald-Cut Engagement Ring With Fern Finish
Textured bands have a stunning, antique quality about them. Here, an emerald-cut diamond with fern finish set in choice of platinum or 18k gold. The band is intricately designed with four rows of milgrain detailing.
SHOP NOW: Greenwich St. Jewelers, $1,600
Danhov Baguette Diamond Engagement Ring
A band of channel-set, baguette diamonds gives this traditional solitaire a flair of masculinity for a modern, androgynous aesthetic. Featuring a round diamond center stone set in 18k gold.
SHOP NOW: Greenwich St. Jewelers, $3,450
Jade Trau Parasol 1 Ring (Setting)
There's something incredibly romantic about a satin finish that just doesn't translate in high-polished styles. Here, a round center stone with diamond halo is set in a choice of 18k gold.
SHOP NOW: Jade Trau, $6,400
Harry Kotlar Style J-5754 Artisan Pavé French-Cut Ring
French-cut designs tend to offer more brilliance overall as light is reflected from the v-shaped texture of the diamond settings. This ring features a 2.5-carat oval center stone set on a hand-crafted, french-cut pavé band in platinum.
SHOP NOW: Harry Kotlar, $57,820
Harry Kotlar Style J-3987 Classico Ring
For a bold look with slightly more masculine features, opt for square shapes over rounded curves. Here, a 3.17-carat, asscher-cut diamond is set on a platinum band of square emeralds.
SHOP NOW: Harry Kotlar, $64,805
Harry Winston Classic Winston™ Oval-Shaped Engagement Ring
You can never go wrong with the enduring sophistication of an oval-shaped stone. This refined style features an oval diamond center stone fringed with tapered baguette side stones and set in platinum.
SHOP NOW: Harry Winston, price upon request
Jack Kelége Style KGR 1069 Engagement Ring (Setting)
A glimmering solitaire is truly ageless. A round center stone is mounted on a pavé basket and matching band, set in 18k white gold.
SHOP NOW: Jack Kelége, from $2,750
Karl Lagerfeld Style 31-KA178GRW Round-Cut Diamond Engagement Ring With Halo
This perennial classic is accentuated with the ultra-modern elements of pyramid-shaped studs. A round center stone is framed by a pavé halo and pyramid-studded mount, set on a pavé and pyramid-studded band.
SHOP NOW: Karl Lagerfeld, price upon request
Single Stone Cori Ring
Unquestionably bold, this style allows the center stone to do all of the talking. An Old-European-cut diamond is set in 18k champagne gold. "We find that this style works great with any center stone," says Madilian. "It's a popular favorite for anyone wanting to reset a diamond they are not so fond of like a princess or radiant cut."
SHOP NOW: Single Stone, $19,100
"Vintage is always a great option," says Madilian. "Finding something that you love that was previously owned is a great alternative to the traditional method of selecting a stone or ring design. Remounting a family heirloom is also a great cost-cutting alternative which we are big fans of and is one of the most popular aspects of our business."
Kwiat Ashoka Collection Diamond Engagement Ring
The Ashoka cut is widely recognized for its very distinct prismatic brilliance that gives the stone a fiery quality. Here, an ashoka-cut diamond is encircled by a pavé halo and set on a platinum, pavé band.
SHOP NOW: Kwiat, from $7,750
Kwiat Fidelity Diamond Engagement Ring
A criss-cross shank to represent the interwoven love that you and your partner share. A round, brilliant solitaire is set on a platinum pavé band.
SHOP NOW: Kwiat, price upon request
Michael M Define Engagement Ring R737-2OV
Vintage-inspired designs have already proven their age-defying charm, making them the perfect choice for a piece that will last a lifetime. This ring features an oval center stone with pavé halo and band. All set in 18k white gold.
SHOP NOW: Northeastern Fine Jewelry, $4,850
Lizzie Mandler White Diamond Emerald-Cut Ring
A stunning emerald-cut diamond solitaire set in 18k rose gold. The band is created with a knife-edge design that gives it a peaked look rather than the conventionally rounded surface.
SHOP NOW: Lizzie Mandler, price upon request
Nirav Modi Emerald Celestial Ring
The North Star is said to always guide you home, and this celestial design will forever steer your thoughts to the one person who feels like home. An emerald-cut diamond center stone floats between a diamond halo, set on an 18k white gold, diamond-encrusted band.
SHOP NOW: The Jewellery Editor, price upon request
Parade New Classic Bridal R3920 Ring Setting
A timeless style with enough glitz for all of the ages. A cushion-cut diamond center stone sits on a glittering pavé band and diamond-encrusted mount. All set in 18k yellow gold.
SHOP NOW: Parade, $2,250
Penny Preville Liat Ring Setting
A classic solitaire, but make it regal. This brilliant solitaire is cradled in a crown of diamonds and set on a diamond-encrusted band with beautiful filigree design. All set in a choice of 18k gold or platinum.
SHOP NOW: Penny Preville, $3,645
Penny Preville Penelope Round Ring Setting
A halo is an oh-so sweet and romantic addition that has demonstrated its reluctance to ever go out of style. Here, a round center stone is encased in a diamond pavé halo and set on a pavé band of 18k gold or platinum.
SHOP NOW: Penny Preville, $3,345
Ritani Open-Band Diamond Engagement Ring Setting
An open-shank design symbolizing the convergence of two separate entities into one loving union. A round center stone is french-set on a split-shank diamond band. All in 18k rose gold.
SHOP NOW: Ritani, $3,120
Sylvie Clarinda Vintage-Inspired Engagement Ring Setting
Vintage inspiration basically ensures a ring design will be exalted to the immortal ranks of treasured family heirlooms. This piece features an emerald-cut center stone framed by a pavè halo and set on a pavé, split-shank band.
SHOP NOW: Sylvie, from $2,170
Sylvie Unique Double-Halo Mixed Color Diamond Engagement Ring
Why not add a little something blue to a classic engagement ring that will undoubtedly become your family's something old one day. This round diamond center stone is framed by not one but two halos of diamonds and sapphires, set on a diamond-accented band.
SHOP NOW: Sylvie, $2,275
Tacori RoyalT Diamond Ring
All good things come in threes, and this gloriously intricate piece is no exception. An oval diamond is flanked by two cadillac diamonds and set on a platinum, pavé band. The side profile is not to be outdone, either, with a diamond-encrusted scrollwork gallery and rails.
SHOP NOW: Tacori, $12,790
Single Stone Jessica Ring
"I love the cushion-cut diamond in this Jessica ring," says Madilian. "It is soft and romantic and the diamonds on the shank add a subtle detail. Platinum is a timeless metal that really enhances white diamonds."
SHOP NOW: Single Stone, $22,500
Tiffany & Co. Tiffany® Setting Engagement Ring
In the world of bridal jewelry, iconic is synonymous with enduring style and legacy—exactly what we want out of an engagement ring. And no one does iconicity better than Tiffany & Co with their 130-year old, namesake setting. Here, a diamond solitaire sits on an 18k rose gold band.
SHOP NOW: Tiffany & Co., from $1,450
Uneek Oval Diamond Three-Stone Engagement Ring
The inspiration for this double-shank silhouette comes from the undulating curves of the female physique. The curvaceous appeal is carried over to the oval diamond center stone flanked by oval side stones, set on diamond-encrusted, 18k gold bands.
SHOP NOW: Uneek, price upon request
Van Cleef & Arpels Perlée Solitaire Ring
A humble band can make just as much of a statement as a brilliant center stone. This ring features a diamond solitaire on a white gold, beaded "perlée" band. The band adds tons of dimension and texture to the otherwise simple design.
SHOP NOW: Van Cleef & Arpels, from $3,550
Bario Neal Avens Diamond Princess Ring
A classic, princess-cut diamond solitaire with a creative twist. Unlike prototypical bands that are fleshed out vertically, this 14k gold band is forged horizontally to show only a razor-thin edge at eye level with the majority of its width visible only from the profile.
SHOP NOW: Bario Neal, from $3,079
DY Eden Solitaire Engagement Ring
David Yurman's iconic cable detailing has always been indicative of love's union of two separate entities. This diamond solitaire may seem exempt from its cable-clad counterparts, but a closer look will show a platinum band with hidden cable detailing. Sometimes the greatest beauty of all is hidden in the details.
SHOP NOW: David Yurman, price upon request
DB Classic Round Brilliant Diamond Ring
Simplicity is key when it comes to longevity, and solitaires will forever stand the test of time. Here, a round solitaire diamond is set on an 18k yellow gold band.
SHOP NOW: De Beers, from $9,450
DB Classic Oval-Shaped Diamond Ring
And if yellow gold isn't exactly your speed, this oval diamond solitaire set in platinum will be sure to dazzle for all of eternity. Unlike round stones, the oval shape is ideal for elegantly elongating fingers in the most sophisticated way.
SHOP NOW: De Beers, $6,500
Hearts on Fire Illustrious Engagement Ring
This may look like an ordinary pavé band at first glance, but closer inspection will show a design that is completely flush with diamonds on all three visible sides. Now that's a lot of sparkle! A round diamond solitaire picks up all of that extra light and refracts in a brilliance that could probably be seen from miles away. All set in a choice of 18k gold or platinum.
SHOP NOW: Hearts on Fire, from $8,090
DB Classic Princess-Cut Diamond Ring
With stunning geometric composition, clean lines, and so much brilliance, princess-cut diamonds have the perfect combination of classic style and contemporary modernity to span the ages. Here, a princess-cut solitaire is set in platinum.
SHOP NOW: De Beers, from $10,700
Catbird Juno the Swan Engagement Ring
As graceful as a swan, this three-stone engagement ring elegantly drapes over the ring finger like a bejeweled cloak. A brilliant-cut white diamond is fringed with two horizontally-set, pear-shaped side stones.
SHOP NOW: Catbird, $12,500