Can the Cost of your Engagement Ring Predict the Length of Your Relationship?

Can the Cost of your Engagement Ring Predict the Length of Your Relationship?

29th September 2021

While we all know you can’t buy love, can the amount you spend on an engagement ring predict how long your relationship will last? Sacet has looked into long-lasting, and not-so-long-lasting, marriages to find out if there really is a correlation between how much you spend on an engagement ring and the length of the marriage.

For data collection purposes, only celebrity marriages were considered and the information relating to marriages of public figures were collected from a variety of readily accessible data. To ensure the reliability of the data, the information was cross-referenced across the web and fact-checked. After collecting the date of the marriage, divorce dates, engagement ring type and estimated ring price, the data was then analysed using a quantitative approach. 

Here’s what we discovered:

Do Less Expensive Engagement Rings Equal a Longer Marriage?

From our research, we discovered that engagement rings on the ‘cheaper’ end (£0-200k) seem to be indicative of a longer relationship. One of Hollywood’s most successful relationships, between Rita Wilson and Tom Hanks, has lasted for 33 years and is still going strong. They married in 1988 and yet there was no engagement ring! 

Other successful marriages include Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Phillip who were married for 73 years and 5 months with a £100,000 diamond engagement ring. Although still costly, this ring makes her the royal with the least expensive engagement ring as Prince Phillip proposed shortly after WW2 and her ring was paid for using ration coupons. 

Michelle and Barack Obama have been married for 28 years and 10 months with a £70,000 one-carat solitaire diamond engagement ring set in yellow gold. And Victoria and David Beckham have been married for 22 years and 1 month with a £65,000 marquise cut diamond ring. However, David Beckham has continuously showered Victoria with affection, buying her 13 engagement rings over the years which may be the secret to their long-lasting love.

Engagement Rings Between £300k and £3mil

Celebrity relationships with engagement rings that cost between £300k and £3mil are generally more short-lived than rings between £0-200k, but there have been a few exceptions to the rule - particularly with rings that are between the £800-900k and £1-2mil price brackets. Long-lasting couples include Sarah Jessica Parker and Matthew Broderick who have been married for 24 years and 3 months with an £830,000 5 carat, emerald cut diamond ring on a yellow gold band.

Princess Diana and Prince Charles’ marriage lasted for 16 years and 1 month with a £700,000 blue Ceylon sapphire ring that was surrounded by 14 solitaire diamonds. Queen Margrethe II of Danemark and Prince Henrik were married for an impressive 50 years and 8 months with a £1,200,000 ‘toi et moi’ diamond engagement ring. 

Engagement Rings Over £3mil

Most of those with a proposal ring that cost above £3mil either never made it to marriage or divorced soon after. Mariah Carey, who received one of the most expensive diamond engagement rings in the world from James Packer, a 35-carat emerald cut-diamond set in platinum by designer Wilfredo Rosado, never made it down the aisle as their relationship ended after 10 months.

The marriage between Zoë Kravitz and Karl Glusman lasted just 1 year and 6 months with a £6,900,000 antique engagement ring that featured a band of delicately glowing large rose-cut diamonds set in silver-topped gold and backed with a sliver of foil which was popular in the 18th-century. Miranda Kerr and Orlando Bloom were another high-profile couple who divorced after just 3 years with a £7,700,000 unique flower-shaped diamond engagement ring.

Engagement Ring Prices Divided by the Length of the Relationship

We also looked at how much each ring cost per day of the relationship. Unsurprisingly, Mariah Carey topped our list with our extravagant 35-carat emerald cut diamond ring set in platinum which costs James Packer a whopping £47,445.26 a day during their 10 month-long engagement. The singer also features in 9th position with the 17-carat pink and white diamond ring by Jacob & Co’s Jacob Arabo that Nick Cannon gave her. After nearly 7 years together before they divorced, the engagement ring cost £1,437.37 per day.

In position two is Demi Lovato’s £1,400,000 emerald cut diamond engagement ring which is flanked by two trapezoid diamonds. The relationship between Demi and Max Ehrich lasted just 3 months making the ring cost over £22,500 a day! And, in third place comes Elizabeth Taylor, known by many as a jewellery expert and collector. Mike Todd, an American film and theatre producer, proposed to Elizabeth with a 30-carat emerald cut diamond. Their relationship ended after a year with the tragic death of Mike in a plane crash. With the ring quoted at  £5,100,000, this makes the cost £12,977.10 a day. 

Where are you in your Relationship?

From our research, on average, marriage length before divorce is approximately 4 years and 3 months. We also found that proposals that fall through before marriage do so after around 1 year and 3 months and the ‘happily ever after’ status usually lasts for 20 years. 

But why is forever defined as 20 years? Well, it’s important to remember that the average doesn’t consider the ‘engagement period’, which, for many, can be as long as an entire decade. Neil Patrick Harris and David Burtka both proposed to each other one year apart and were engaged for 7 years before marrying.

Others are more career-focused and decide to get married later on in life. And, many couples may even go through several marriages, meaning their ‘till death us do part’ vows might’ve been found later in life too. Regardless of when someone found love, 20 years is plenty of time to cherish each other and be happy together. 

Take Mumtaz Mahal and the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan, for example. Their relationship lasted ‘only’ 20 years and while little is known about the couple, after the death of his wife, the emperor commissioned the Taj Mahal in her honour. Talk about a small token of appreciation!

Of course, these are only averages and life is unpredictable. As shown by our research, there are relationships that lasted as little as a couple of months and others decades. Lastly, the length of a relationship does not determine how much love and happiness there is, or was, in the relationship. Love comes in many different shapes and forms and is hardly quantifiable with mere numbers.

Looking to propose to your partner? Browse our lab-grown diamond rings which have all been lovingly handcrafted and made with sustainability, welfare and ethics at the forefront of our minds.

If you’re struggling to decide on which type of diamond ring is right for you, read our guide on lab-grown vs natural diamond rings to help you choose.

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