Five Ethical Engagement Ring Options


When it is the time to make that plunge into marriage, most people want a nice ring to go with that level of dedication. There are all kinds of engagement rings, but if you care about the ethics there are a lot of things you need to look out for. One thing you should look into is conflict-free jewelry. This means that the stones and gems are mined or produced in a place that doesn’t have war over the precious resources. Everybody knows that diamonds, gold, and stones are often sourced unethically and buying them can be a real moral dilemma. It doesn’t have to be. Here are five options for ethical engagement rings.

Lab-Created Diamonds

Whenever you bring up the ethics of jewelry, someone inevitably talks about diamonds. The term “blood diamond” has even become a part of our popular culture consciousness since the movie of the same name was released. Nowadays people realize that they don’t have to get their diamonds from bloody conflict zones where there is ethnic and political violence.

There are even lab created diamond engagement rings. While this changes the idea of a diamond being inherently valuable, people will continue to love diamonds for their aesthetic beauty. Just because they are created in a lab doesn’t mean they aren’t valuable and meaningful. As it turns out, you can buy an ethical diamond ring for your significant other.

Ethically Sourced Diamonds

Another option is to get your diamonds the traditional way, but from a place that is conflict-free and without exploitation. There are plenty of different jewelers who make this their priority, but it doesn’t necessarily help the cost. These diamonds will be more expensive than unethical ones but you will have the peace of mind knowing that there is no blood involved in mining and exporting your diamond. Nowadays, ethically sourced diamonds are on the cutting edge of popularity. People can buy large diamonds without feeling bad about it.

Recycled Gold

Whether your ring has a diamond or not, you should think about using recycled gold instead of the environmentally dubious production of gold. There are all kinds of ethical issues when it comes to gold. If you want to buy a gold ring for your partner for engagement, look into the details. Recycled gold is made from small bits and pieces from other items, which lowers the impact that gold has on the planet. Furthermore, there is a finite amount of gold and recycling it means that the mining will slow. In 2020, 28 percent of the gold supply was recycled, suggesting that the gold industry could become much more ethically sound in the future.

Conflict-Free Stones

If you’re not getting a diamond but are choosing another stone or gem, it’s very important to make sure that they are sourced in a conflict-free environment. You don’t want to be the result of your purchase. While there are many different precious stones, their production varies from stone to stone and place to place. Whether it’s a ruby, a sapphire, an amethyst, or another stone, it is vital they come from a place that isn’t at war to sell them to you.

While conflict-free stones are a good start, you should also do your best to determine whether or not the workers in the place that they are sourced are treated fairly. You can probably tell by now that there is a lot of exploitation in the mining of stones. When you are buying one for your partner, try to be part of the solution, not the problem.

Sustainable & Recycled Metals

Finally, even the metal that is used for the rings can be the subject of ethics. Using recycled and sustainably produced metals is another way to ensure that your engagement ring is ethically sound. There are a lot of different ways that metals can be recycled. Not only is it better for the environment to keep those metals in circulation instead of producing more, you will also be doing your part to decrease the abuse of exploited workers.

You probably didn’t realize you’d have to think about all this when you decided to get married, but with precious things comes ethical questions. Luckily you can have it both ways. It’s entirely possible to buy that beautiful, valuable, and meaningful ring in the most ethical and sustainable way possible.

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