It’s that moment you’ve been waiting for: your fiancé has planned a special moment just for the two of you, then gets down on one knee and pops the question you’ve been hoping to hear.
But what happens when he opens the ring box and you don’t like what’s inside?
First off, you’re not alone. Many brides have had to navigate tacky engagement rings, even if the situation feels upsetting or awkward at first—and have ended up blissfully happy with the man and the ring of their dreams.
Need help figuring out the next steps?
Read our tips for navigating an engagement ring return, trying engagement rings online, and for finding the right ring for you.
Don’t Live With a Ring You Don’t Love
First things first: brides don’t have to live with tacky engagement rings forever. While it may require an uncomfortable conversation, chances are your groom would rather work out this problem as a couple and see you with a ring you adore. While you may be disappointed that you didn’t get the ring of your dreams on the first try, don’t take this moment as a sign for your entire relationship. Chances are, even if he is hurt initially, he will come to see this “problem” as an opportunity to make you happy and work on a solution as a couple by finding you your ideal ring.
Approach Your Conversation With Care
Tacky engagement rings are a relatively easy problem to fix—after all, it’s the groom to be that matters the most!
One of your concerns is likely how to manage an awkward situation without hurting his feelings or making the situation more difficult. While engagements and marriages are full of joy and celebrating, there are also moments that require total honesty—and you can probably bet that your fiancé would want you to be honest with him, no matter how difficult it is for you to bring up the fact that you prefer another ring.
Come up with your talking points early, or even rehearse what you’re going to say to him—this will help the conversation run more smoothly and keep your discussion on track, even if you’re nervous.
Set Aside a Good Time to Talk
It probably seems like there’s no ideal time to talk about tacky engagement rings, but we’ve got a few pointers for brides to be when it comes to chatting with your man about finding a different ring. Wait for the initial celebrations to subside. Don’t point out that you can’t stand your new ring during a celebratory engagement dinner! But you also don’t want too much time to pass, which will make it more and more difficult to raise the issue with him. You’ll need to play things by ear according to your own sense of your relationship, but generally, a few days or a week is a good time to initiate a dialogue about what you were hoping for in terms of a ring.
Thank Him for the Effort
A little gratitude can go a long way when it comes to these kinds of conversations, and you, of course, don’t want to make your fiance feel bad about his choice of rings. Start off the conversation by thanking him for the thought and care that he put into his proposal and don’t forget to reiterate just how excited you are to spend the rest of your life with him. By establishing a kind, gentle tone at the beginning, he will be more primed to listen to your concerns and solve this problem as a couple, rather than feeling attacked if you were to simply start out by describing what you don’t like about his choice of rings.
Don’t Bash the Ring He Picked
While you may feel comfortable talking about his choice of tacky engagement rings with your friends, try to avoid telling him what you don’t like about the ring or going too much into specifics.
Instead, position the conversation around your dream ring styles, and what kinds of rings you feel express your personality best.
If he got you something modern, explain that your ideal look is more traditional or vintage inspired.
If you feel like the ring is over-embellished, explain that you’ve always loved the look of a simple solitaire or halo ring.
That way he won’t feel like you are attacking his taste, and you’ll have a chance to tell him about the kinds of rings you really like.
Show Him Rings You Love
If he’s not ready to go to a jewelry store or go into full-on shopping mode right away, don’t worry. You can take this time to (gently!) show him a few photos of rings that suit your taste. That way, whenever it is the right time to exchange or return the first ring he gave you, he’ll feel prepared to make a decision about a new ring or look for a new one with your help in a way that feels collaborative (and maybe even romantic and fun) instead of hostile or stressful. Again, be sure to point out what you like about certain styles rather than what you don’t like about the tacky engagement rings he picked out.
Consider at Home Try-on Options
It can be awkward to go from jewelry store to jewelry store together hoping to find the right ring or to accompany your fiance when he returns the first ring he picked.
Make things easy on yourselves by shopping with an online company that allows you to try engagement rings online. Most of them are free and allow you to see samples of the rings you love without having to make any commitment or pay an additional fee.
At Aurosi Jewels, we offer one of the most flexible home try on programs in the industry, allowing you to choose up to five ring samples that you’ll receive in a week or less. You’ll have up to five days to try on and consider your choices, with no obligation to purchase or cost to you. We can also customize any of our mountings to fit an heirloom diamond or diamond from your original engagement ring, and can also create an entirely custom ring for you! We invite you to explore our engagement ring selection today, try engagement rings online, and find the ring of your dreams.