Cubic zirconia engagement rings are not popular without reason. They look great, in many ways just like bands with real diamonds, but with a friction of their price.
So instead of several thousand dollars you can get breathtaking engagement jewelry for few dozens of dollars (even the best cz engagement rings rarely exceed few hundred dollars) and use the rest of the money for other expenses, being related to weddings or not.
What is cubic zirconia?
Cubic zirocnia, sometimes abbreviated as CZ, is a mineral made oz zirconium oxide. It's not abundant in nature, but can be produced synthetically. Due to its crystal structure similar to diamond's it's the main contender in the market of synthetic gems or so called diamond simulants.
Cubic zirconia can be cut exactly the same as diamond, so all the popular cuts for engagement rings, like round (above), princess (below), oval, pear and others can be offered.
Synthetic stones are much more perfect than natural ones, so we can expect complete absence of inclusions which are always present in natural gems. When we deal with white cubic zirconia, it is completely colorless and some may even say it looks too perfect.
CZ engagement rings are widely available and can be purchased on-line. Amazon, for instance, as the biggest retailer in the world, offers thousands of high quality pieces with stones of different shapes and sizes and in different settings.
They are often available with free shipping and at discounted prices. Sterling silver, yellow, white and rose gold, stainless steel and platinum are the most popular metals. With variety of colors in which cubic zirconia is available, you really just have to pick one to your taste.
You can, for instance emphasize your Irish ancestry with green or bride's blue eyes with blue stones:
Or you may get something more bold in vivid red or striking black color!
Engagement rings with synthetic stones are not popular just for their price, they are also first choice among couples concerned about ecology and the fact a production of diamonds is in many cases closely related with wars and exploitation. Plus some of them look really spectacular:
Just remember - although CZ is harder than most of semi precious metals, it's not as hard as a diamond (or even sapphire), or it is not meant for every day usage. Unfortunately ring is among all the jewelry exposed to the highest degree of stress, so the likelihood of scratching is pretty high.
Swarovski achieved significant progress when they started coating stones with DLC (diamond-like carbon), microscopic particles which add to hardness and make CZ more similar to real diamonds. By the way, if you don't limit the choice on rings only, there are also CZ engagement earrings, bracelets, and necklaces!
What about cleaning? In general cubic zirconia is easy to clean, mild detergent and soft brush should do the job. In some cases inexpensive ultrasonic process should be applied, but before that make sure you won't damage the metal, which may be more susceptible to this kind of treatment.
Maybe even more important - with just few clicks from the comfort of your armchair you can get size, clarity, sparkles, just about everything you can imagine for an engagement ring with cubic zirconia to make a proposal. May your wish come true!