Sex and relationship expert Simone Paget and Livia Diamonds bespoke ring designer Aret Oymakas share their insights into the new age of marriage proposals:
"Is the proposal dead? In a word - no," says Aret Oymakas. "However, the proposal is changing. While many of my clients are still opting for a very traditional engagement, it's increasingly common for both partners to be involved in the process. The surprise factor of an out-of-the-blue proposal isn't as prominent anymore - it's really more about the couple making the decision together, and creating a moment that is unique to them."
"Many of my clients at Livia Diamonds want to be unique in their engagement style and this often emerges during the process of choosing an engagement ring. They demand bespoke custom designs because they don’t want to go to a global jewelry brand and buy mass-produced designs that everyone else is wearing. Couples want to feel hands-on during the design process; they want to put their own spin on it and make it memorable and unique. The custom design process takes time and effort, and it's very symbolic of a marriage. I think it's a beautiful way to begin a lifelong commitment to your partner."
So, the ring is in hand... but the traditional proposal is out. Wondering what this means for today's modern romantics? Below, sex and relationship expert Simone Paget dishes her advice:
"It's simple - do what feels authentic to you as a couple," Simone says. "Just because a trend in proposals happens to be 'X' (remember back in the day when every rom-com character was proposing by slipping a diamond into a glass of champagne?) doesn't mean that you have to do that thing. Whether it's slipping the ring into that slice of gluten-free black forest cake or proposing via skywriting - if it doesn't feel authentic to you, don't do it. If you're the kind of couple that loves grand gestures - don't be afraid to go big. However, if you both prefer a more low-key approach to romance, keep things intimate. Your proposal is going to be memorable, no matter what!"
"It also pays to know your audience," she adds. "When my best friend's husband proposed to her, he planned a full day scavenger hunt where I accompanied her on a champagne-fueled adventure around town, picking up different clues (all related to their love story) that he'd arranged ahead of time. After we'd found all the clues, he blindfolded my friend and whisked her off to a private beach where he popped the question. My best friend loves puzzles of any kind, so his proposal was pitch perfect. However, for someone else, it might have been their worst nightmare. It all comes down to knowing your partner."
Simone's final piece of advice?"Focus on how you feel. I think this is one of the only times when words do speak louder (or as loud) as actions. If you focus on letting the other person know how much you love and want to spend the rest of your life with them, you can't go wrong. The proposal doesn't have to be elaborate or "perfect" - it just has to be real and from the heart."