Since time immemorial, diamonds have been the go-to stones for engagement rings. Every girl dreams of being proposed with a sparkling diamond and every guy would love to present his beloved with the most precious one he could lay his hands on.
Picking out an engagement ring is quite a task, with all the options available. You can option for a gleaming solitaire, or an emerald cut stone, or you can choose an intricate design made with smaller diamonds. Some even choose to get their family rings resized to present to the next generation.
But do you know why it is just diamonds that are this popular as engagement rings? Why not rubies or emeralds, which are equally stunning and valuable? Everyone wants to adhere to the traditional diamonds, but who introduced this tradition in the first place?
Diamonds rings have a very unromantic history behind them. It was born from an advertising scheme in the 1940s. Before this time, only about 10 per cent of the engagement rings had diamond in them. But the diamond cartel D Beers completely changed the game with a clever marketing strategy.
De Beers made the classic slogan, “A Diamond is Forever” in 1948 which convinced people that diamonds were an important part of proposals and weddings. This campaign was so powerful that it worked.
“The De Beers campaign, along with significant diamond product placement in Hollywood films and on the red carpet, was one of the most successful ad campaigns in history,” said Stephen Silver, a jeweller and gemologist, told Bustle. “The campaign struck a nerve, successfully and subtly linking a diamond’s durability [with enduring love.]”
Due to their duress, diamonds have come to be associated with the idea of enduring and strong love as well. The Mohs Hardness scale is used by jewellers and geologists to measure the durability and hardness of the stones. And it is well known that diamond is the hardest substance known to man.
As engagements rings are wore almost on a daily basis, for the rest of your life, diamonds are the ideal choice for them. You can hit it against a wall, your car door, get stuck in your clothes or whatever it maybe, diamonds can withstand it all.
“The first diamond engagement ring was presented to Mary of Burgundy in the 15th century by Archduke Maximillian of Austria,” said Darshan Gajiwala, diamond expert and co-founder of Sun Diamond. “This led to the practice of exchanging diamond engagement rings, but it was still a concept exclusively for the noble.”