Earrings, in one form or another, have been around for over five thousand years, with the earliest adaptations of stud earrings dating back to Ancient Egypt. More recently, diamond stud earrings became a lasting fashion trend in the late 19th century and have been a classic staple ever since. In modern times, many styles and options are available, so you can find a unique pair of studs; these will be covered in this guide.
Today, diamond stud earrings can be seen on both men and women to offer a simple yet striking addition to any outfit. They are suited for a wide variety of occasions. Diamond stud earrings pair well with a little black dress or can elevate a business suit for professional gatherings. But how do you choose the right pair of diamond earrings to suit your style and taste?
How to Choose the Best Diamond Earrings for You
While you may think choosing the perfect pair of diamond stud earrings is a simple trip to your local jeweler, there are many factors to consider. The size of the diamond, the diamond setting, the backing, and the best metals for earrings all come into play when you’re shopping for a pair of diamond studs. Whether you’re trying to select the perfect set of diamond earrings for you or a loved one, here are some options you may want to consider before making your purchase.
What Diamond Stud Earring Shape Suits You?
The shape of the diamond you choose will affect other elements of the stud earrings you decide to purchase, right down to the setting, post, and backing. Therefore, it’s important to choose wisely. Here’s a look at the most common diamond shapes used for stud earrings:
- Round and Princess Cut Diamonds: These are the most popular diamond shapes for stud earrings. Both are known for their classic, symmetrical look and offer maximum brilliance and sparkle.
Smooth and circular, round cut diamond studs provide a more traditional look. However, if you’re aiming for an edgier style, the four-prong metal basket of the princess cut diamond is a good choice.
- Cushion Cut and Oval-Shaped Diamonds: These diamond shapes have been growing in popularity, especially with younger crowds, due to their antique and vintage vibe. They offer a soft, subtle accent to any dress or outfit and a more feminine look.
- Asscher and Emerald-Cut Diamond Studs: These also offer a vintage look but boast more rigid edges and angled cuts. This could impact what setting to choose because of the unsymmetrical shape of the diamond.
- Heart-Shaped, Pear-Shaped, and Marquise-Cut Diamonds: These diamond shapes are typically reserved for the more daring and adventurous types due to their unique style. As with selecting any other diamond choices, it all comes down to personal preference and what settings you’d be wearing your diamond stud earrings in.
While princess and round cut diamond studs are the most popular choices, they are certainly not your only options. If you or your loved one enjoys attention-seeking fashion choices, there are a variety of unique diamond shapes to choose from.
Consider Diamond Quality
Another important factor to consider when investing in a pair of diamond stud earrings is the quality. The universal method for determining a diamond’s quality is known as the 4Cs—Color, Clarity, Cut, and Carat. This will help you get the best value for how much you want to spend when you buy your diamond earrings.
Let’s take a crash course in the 4Cs:
- Color: Every surface and angle of a diamond acts like its own tiny mirror, reflecting every color that comes near it, including your skin tone and the precious metal of its setting. All of these factors will impact the color of your diamond. To get the most for your money, you may want to consider buying a less expensive diamond that is lower on the D-to-Z color scale, rather than paying more for a colorless diamond.
- Clarity: Clarity is arguably a higher priority if you’re purchasing an engagement ring rather than diamond stud earrings. The higher the clarity, the fewer inclusions and imperfections. Since onlookers won’t likely be up close and personal with your diamond stud earrings, you can get away with saving money on a set of lower-clarity diamonds. This will allow you to spend a little more on the other Cs.
- Cut: Of course, you want your diamond earrings to be eye-catching and have maximum sparkle. If you’re going for a more classic cut like a round or princess-cut diamond, you’ll want to choose a stone with a ‘very good’ to ‘excellent’ GIA rating. This will ensure you invest in diamond stud earrings that emit a brilliant shine and sparkle.
- Carat Weight: This will all come down to how much you want to spend on your diamond stud earrings. If it’s within your budget, you should try to purchase diamonds that are .50 carats or larger. Remember not to skimp on the expense of an expertly cut diamond just to get a higher carat weight. A poorly cut diamond, even if it is larger, will lack the luster of a diamond with a better cut.
Select Diamond Stud Earring Carat, Weight and Size - Among the most popular and relatively affordable options are one-carat diamond studs. This is the total weight of the pair of earrings, with a half-carat in each setting. To better understand how big that actually is, a single half-carat diamond stud is about 5 millimeters in diameter and a one-carat diamond is around 6.5 millimeters in diameter. Keep in mind that the larger the diamond, the heavier it will be. A pair of higher-carat count earrings will weigh more heavily on your earlobes and protrude more, so choose a setting that has an appealing profile.
Consider the Diamond Stud Setting
The setting you choose for your diamond stud earrings will depend on your style and what shape and cut of stone you decide on. Here are some diamond settings to consider.
- Four-Prong Setting - A four-prong diamond setting offers elegance and a timeless appeal. Four prongs mean less metal encasing the diamond, allowing the stone to really pop and become the star of the show. This will give your diamond a more squared-off look, so it’s the perfect setting for princess-cut and cushion-cut diamonds. If you want a sturdier setting for a larger stone, you can graduate to a six-prong setting.
- Three-Prong Martini Setting - As the name suggests, a martini setting resembles the shape of a martini glass and allows the diamond to rest closer to the earlobe. Three-prong settings are constructed to fit the diamond perfectly, true to its size, to create a flush setting.
- Bezel Setting - The bezel setting was one of the earliest gemstone settings. Bezel settings hold the stone securely and offer an opportunity to showcase a precious metal. This diamond earring setting creates a metal perimeter that completely encapsulates the diamond stud, giving it a more modern and uniform look. This is a great opportunity to choose a more unique precious metal like rose gold, yellow gold, or even platinum.
- Halo Setting - Halo settings are popular in both ring settings and diamond stud earring settings. They typically feature a ring of smaller diamonds encircling the center gemstone. This adds more brilliance to the center diamond because it reflects off the smaller halo stones.
Choose the Best Diamond Earring Back for You
It is always advised you purchase insurance for your diamond jewelry. But making sure it is secure when you’re wearing it is equally important. Choosing the right backing for your diamond earrings will come down to preference.
- Friction, Push-Back, or Butterfly Earring Back: Push-back earring backings are the most common stud earring closures. Also called butterfly backs or friction backing, these are popular because they are simple to take on and off, as well as secure.
- Threaded or Screw Back: Screw-on earring backs are the most secure of stud earring backings. While they are thicker in diameter, they keep your stud earrings in place and prevent them from falling out. If you have sensitive earlobes, this may not be the choice for you. Individuals not accustomed to removing screw-back stud earrings may find it more frustrating, challenging, and possibly painful, so choose wisely.
Decide What Metal for Earrings You Want
The diamonds may be the focal point of your stud earrings and the setting defines the style, but you must also consider what metal you want. Precious metals also affect the style of diamond stud earrings. The metal type also impacts how you need to care for your earrings. Gold is too soft for jewelry, so it is combined with other metals to create attractive variants. We’ll look at some of the best metals for earrings, starting with these choices:
- Yellow Gold: A traditional choice, yellow gold is timeless yet stylish. It looks similar to pure gold but alloy metals make it stronger, so it’s well-suited for daily wear. Since 18-karat gold is 75% pure gold, it has a richer golden color, while 14k gold (with 58.3% pure gold) is stronger.
- Rose Gold: The pink hue of rose gold yields its association with romance. A mix of pure gold and copper gives it this rosy hue and creates a vintage look. Rose gold pairs well with slightly yellow diamonds. For a stronger pink color, go with a lower karat count.
- White Gold: The high reflectivity of white gold contributes to its elegance. An alloy of pure gold and white base metals, it’s also coated in rhodium, creating a bright silvery sheen. It is not suited for diamonds with a yellow tint. Since the metal is coated, there’s no visual difference between 14k and 18k gold.
- Sterling Silver: Sterling silver is lightweight and highly durable. Stronger than gold, it’s less prone to scratching and denting but is soft compared to other metals, so it isn’t ideal for setting diamonds. However, with regular polishing, you can maintain this hypoallergenic metal so you have a beautiful set of fashion stud earrings.
- Platinum: Platinum is a white metal that’s exceptionally durable. While it looks like white gold, it doesn’t have rhodium that may need to be replated. Platinum isn’t great for diamonds with yellow tones. However, it’s an excellent choice for near-colorless or colorless diamonds in a halo earring setting.
Jeweler’s Touch Has a Wide Selection of Diamond Stud Earrings
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Jeweler’s Touch opened its doors in 1992 with a team of GIA-certified gemologists, accredited jewelry professionals, and skilled goldsmiths. We offer clients a wide selection of diamond earrings, engagement rings, and wedding bands to celebrate the most memorable times in your life. We proudly serve Los Angeles, Placentia, Yorba Linda, Brea, Orange County, and most of Southern California.