S hopping for the right engagement ring can become quite a daunting experience as there seems to be an endless array of choices. One of the most critical factors you need to consider before you finally settle on which engagement ring to pick is deciding the setting for your ring.

How do you choose the right ring setting, considering the numerous and sometimes confusing options available? Each setting has its high and low points, and it is left for you to review the factors important to you before making the final decision.

Prong Setting / Solitaire

The beauty in simplicity. The prong setting is a modern engagement ring setting that typically consists of one solitary center stone held securely by metal pins of the prong.

Here, you would carefully consider the security of the stone and the beauty of the ring. Doing this will help you strike a balance between the two.

The Tiffany Setting

This is about the most popular engagement ring style. The prong setting is modified to display more stone and less metal. It is designed to have the diamond raised high on top of the band.

If you are not satisfied with the extent of stone visibility allowed by the prong, then the Tiffany setting is for you. The concern here, however, is that one might quickly lose the diamond stone.

The Bezel Setting

For very active people like nurses and engineers who use their hands a lot, this setting is ideal. The bezel setting involves having a strip of metal wrapped around the gemstone, holding it securely in place. There is the Full Bezel Setting in which the metal strip entirely bands the stone. While this is safer, it limits the display of the stone's beauty.

The Partial Bezel Setting leaves parts of the stone uncovered, making it more visible but not as secure as the full bezel.

The Tension Setting

If displaying the beauty of your diamond is your priority, then this setting will surely suit you. In this ring setting, the metal of the ring is positioned to use tension or pressure between both ends of the band to hold the stone securely in place. This keeps the stone in full view.

The Halo Setting

Here, the center stone is surrounded by smaller diamonds or gemstones to create a beautiful halo. This arrangement adds more sparkle to the center stone and enhances its size and brilliance. If your gem is one that has subdued brilliance, such as sapphires and rubies, then this is the setting for you.

The Channel Setting

This is a stylishly beautiful setting consisting of a series of identical diamonds set right around the circumference of the ring within a grooved channel carved into the metal band. The diamonds are set flush against the metal without protrusions. This keeps them secure. Half-channel settings have the row of diamonds only going around half the ring.

Other available settings include the Cathedral Setting, the Pave Setting, Vintage and Antique Settings, the Three Stone Ring, the Split Shank, Double Shank Setting, the flush setting, East-west Setting, the Bar setting, the Invisible Setting, etc.

Your personality and style, the security of the stone viz-a-viz the cost, as well as the practicability of daily wear should be given top priority as you decide on what setting to choose. As with every other aspect of fashion, your choice of ring setting is an extension of your personality, and the numerous options available can help you find expression.