Buying a Hidden Halo Engagement Ring: A Full Guide + 6 Sparkly Styles

The discreet glamour of a hidden halo...

Many wearers love the dazzling glow of a diamond halo, but others prefer a more subdued sparkle. If you fall into the latter category but still want a glam engagement ring, consider a hidden halo instead! Hidden halos provide a secret touch of sparkle underneath your diamond to enhance the overall brilliance of your ring while not going overboard.😊

Hidden halo settings come in many shapes and sizes, but there’s sure to be a style that speaks to you personally. Let’s look at hidden halos in depth, specifically:

  • The basics of hidden halos and how they compare to traditional halo settings
  • 6 popular hidden halo setting styles
  • Things to consider when shopping for your hidden halo ring
  • Helpful cleaning tips
  • The best retailers for hidden halos
The Ultimate Guide to Hidden Halo Engagement Ring Settings

Basics: What is a hidden halo engagement ring?

The hidden halo is a newer engagement ring style, but it is certainly becoming very popular, very quickly! Unlike their predecessor, halo settings, hidden halo styles actually place a halo of diamonds below the center diamond for a more subtle yet classy look.

The halo may sit just below the sides of your center stone and look more like a sunken version of a traditional halo ring. Or, the hidden halo may sit at the juncture of your diamond’s basket and the band itself for a lifted effect.

Much like a traditional halo ring, the hidden halo can come in different shapes and sizes as well as double and triple halo styles. However, designers can place a hidden halo in many more locations on the ring than a regular halo, as the hidden ring of accent diamonds may be anywhere along the sides or bottom of your center stone.

While both traditional and hidden halos are lovely, they achieve very different looks! Traditional halo rings tend to be flashier and more luxe, while hidden halos are understated and refined. In fact, they’re more like a combination between halo and solitaire settings.🤹🏻

Despite this, both styles are versatile and can be customized to suit any taste!

6 styles of hidden halo engagement ring

Hidden halo designs can vary depending on where the halo sits, whether there are diamond accents, how the center stone sits in the basket, and more. With that said, here are 6 hidden halo diamond ring styles that we think you’ll love:

Hidden halos at the base of the basket

Hidden Halo Sits at the Base of the Solitaire Basket

When a hidden halo sits below a ring’s basket, it’s barely perceivable if viewed from the top. However, friends and family taking a peek at the side profile of your ring will be shocked to find a glimmering halo underneath!

These halos add a touch of glam to an otherwise stately solitaire design. Try a different diamond shape than a traditional round stone—such as this oval hidden halo engagement ring—to give your piece a bit of personality that separates it from the rest!

Hidden halos as part of the solitaire basket

Hidden Halo Engagement Ring: Hidden Halo as Part of the Solitaire Basket

For a halo that’s even more secretive, try a setting where the hidden halo sits just under the center stone as part of the basket and prongs. Unseen when viewed from above, this style of hidden halo is perfect for adding the slightest sparkle along the sides of an otherwise simple setting.

You can always combine this look with a pavé or channel set band for more brilliance, but a plain band is timeless. Yellow gold is a great choice for hidden halo solitaire settings, as the bright metal makes your diamond appear shinier and full of life!

Floral-inspired hidden halos

Floral-Inspired Hidden Halo Engagement Ring (Platinum)

Fun, flirty, and feminine, floral hidden halos take the design to the next level by creating a familiar silhouette. This hidden halo engagement ring utilizes a recessed ring of diamonds to form petals around the center stone, producing the look of a flower. For a sweet touch, try a rose gold band!🌸

Floral-inspired hidden halos come in a few different styles, but they’re harder to find than traditional hidden halos. Round and cushion hidden halo engagement rings are the most common styles due to each diamond’s soft, rounded silhouette, so you may need to custom design a ring for any other diamond shape!

Double hidden halo designs

Double Hidden Halo Diamond Engagement Ring (Pave Band)
Brilliant Earth: BE1D6362P-18KW

You can always amp up the sparkle with a double hidden halo engagement ring that’s sure to impress your fianceé! Double hidden halos typically sit near the base of the basket, and they produce a fuller, graduated brilliance that travels down to the band.

If the double halo itself is enough sparkle, we recommend a plain metal band for your look. You can also include a splash of color to your ring by choosing a sapphire halo (or two!) during the design process.

Hidden halos with mixed metals

Two-Toned Hidden Halo Style Engagement Ring (Lauren B)
Image: Lauren B

Wearers who often switch metals when it comes to their daily jewelry may really like a mixed metal hidden halo design. In this setting, the halo is actually made from a different colored metal than the band and prongs, creating contrast and breaking up the otherwise monochrome silhouette.

If you often switch between white and yellow-toned jewelry, a mixed metal hidden halo may be the look for you!

Cathedral style hidden halos with accent stones

Yellow Gold Cathedral Style Hidden Halo Ring

Combine the elegant, sweeping arches of a cathedral-style ring with a hidden halo for a modern take on a classic style. The timeless cathedral outline looks amazing when paired with a sparkling hidden halo, but you can actually add accent diamonds to the bridge below the basket for an even more delicate shine.😎

However, if you plan on wearing a wedding band that sits flush against your engagement ring, consider opting for just the cathedral and hidden halo design with no accent stones to avoid damaging either ring.

Things to consider when buying a hidden halo engagement ring

With finer ring details like a hidden halo come a host of considerations you should think about before actually buying this unique style of engagement ring. Here are some topics that come up frequently when shoppers are deciding whether a hidden halo ring is right for them:🤔

Lifestyle

People viewing your ring need to see the hidden halo to appreciate it, so that often means the center stone is placed much higher on a hidden halo ring than in most designs. As such, it’s much easier to hit your largest diamond against hard surfaces or snag it on sweaters if you’re not careful!

If you live an active lifestyle, avoid hidden halo rings. Athletes, gymgoers, and individuals who work with their hands may prefer a style that has a center diamond that sits flush with the setting. Similarly, buyers who wear perfume daily or work with harsh chemicals may want to avoid this setting, as these substances can really do a number on the sparkle of small diamonds.

Color Grade of Center Stone

Diamonds are color graded while face down for a reason: their color is concentrated in the bottom and sides of the stone, whereas the brilliance of the table facet can mask color more easily.

As a result, the color of the center stone on a hidden halo ring may be more noticeable since most people view the ring from the side. Additionally, the halo stones may hide their own color well as they are nearly face up in this case.

Thus, to avoid the inconsistency in the color of your center stone and halo diamonds when viewing it from the side, try to opt for a higher color grade for the center stone.

Wedding Band

Wedding bands can be tricky when it comes to hidden halo engagement rings, so take a little extra time to find the band that best suits your needs. Many wearers prefer a band that sits flush with their engagement ring, but hidden halos tend to leave gaps between both bands.

Do your research to find bands that can sit flush against your ring, or buy a wedding suite that includes a wedding band crafted to fit perfectly with your engagement ring.

An additional thing to consider is the hardness of the diamonds in your hidden halo. These tiny stones are still strong enough to scratch any diamonds or metal they rub up against, so make sure you pick a ring with a hidden halo that sits entirely above your wedding band. That way, contact between the halo and band is limited, and you’ll avoid scratches and chips over time!

Tips about cleaning a hidden halo setting

Much like standard halo settings, hidden halo rings require a little extra love and care when compared to other settings. This is due to the additional pavé diamonds and metal elements that create cracks and crevices where dirt can build up. To avoid a less-than-sparkly setting, keep these cleaning tips in mind for your hidden halo design:✍🏻

Be gentle

Maintaining diamonds and precious metals does not require any real elbow grease if you clean them regularly and avoid contact with harsh chemicals. Try to avoid bringing your ring near perfume, cleaning products, shampoo, and other solutions that can damage your piece or leave residues.

When cleaning your jewelry, we recommend using a soft toothbrush, warm water, and dish soap: Dawn works wonders!

Start by filling a bowl with warm water and dish soap. Then, drop your ring into the solution and leave it to soak for 15-20 minutes. Once time is up, remove your ring and gently scrub it with your soft toothbrush. Make sure you get in between all of the prongs and diamonds without applying excessive pressure!

Finally, rinse your ring and dry it with a lint-free cloth for a final polish. You should clean your jewelry at home as often as necessary, but we recommend giving your ring a clean every two to three weeks to ensure there is no buildup.

Avoid contact with other diamonds

What’s the only thing that can "cut" a diamond? That’s right, another diamond! Hidden halo settings are lovely, but they place those accent stones in a precarious place along the sides of your diamond’s basket.

As such, it’s important to avoid wearing other bands around your ring that could damage or be damaged by your hidden halo setting. Furthermore, take extra care to avoid banging your ring on any hard surfaces, as that’s a quick way to lose diamonds!

Trust the professionals

Routine cleanings and inspections with a jeweler are a crucial part of diamond ring care! Be sure to take your ring in for regular cleanings at least every 6 months or so.

During these professional cleanings, jewelers utilize much larger tools that can more easily remove dirt and grime from your ring. What’s more, it gives your jeweler an opportunity to inspect your ring and make note of any loose diamonds that may require attention.

By bringing your ring to a jeweler once or twice a year, you can save yourself the disappointment of a dull sparkle or a surprise missing pavé diamond.

Where to shop for hidden halo rings

Unsure of where to start your search for a hidden halo? Due to the delicate nature of this design, we recommend sticking to respected retailers with a reputation for quality products. Here are our top 3 favorite places to shop for hidden halo settings:

Blue Nile - In addition to standard round hidden halo engagement rings, Blue Nile has several designers that take this style to a whole new level. Enjoy fun diamond shapes, colorful gemstones, daring bands, additional diamond details, and more!

James Allen - You can’t go wrong with a James Allen ring, and they have multiple hidden halo settings that are perfect for the modern bride. Their petite style hidden halos and unique sidestone looks are definitely something to consider if you prefer sleek, understated looks.

Brilliant Earth - We love that Brilliant Earth gives us the best of both worlds: glistening diamonds as well as environmentally friendly business practices! What’s more, their hidden halo inventory is top-notch, with some excellent colored gemstone options if you’re not interested in a traditional center diamond.

Hidden Halo vs. Traditional Halo Style

Is a hidden halo engagement ring right for you?

So, is a hidden halo setting the right pick for you? This style is certainly sparkly yet subtle, but it does have some drawbacks. Here’s a quick look at the pros and cons of hidden halo engagement rings:

Pros

  • Hidden halos add sparkle to your ring in an affordable manner.
  • Many wearers prefer the subtle design of the hidden halo, as it doesn’t draw too much attention but still creates intrigue.😊
  • They actually make center stones appear larger, so you can opt for a smaller stone and save money.
  • This setting style is versatile and works with any diamond shape.
  • A hidden halo is a “2 for 1” setting, because it looks like a solitaire setting from the top and a halo setting from the side.
  • Hidden halos cost roughly the same as standard halo engagement rings, so you won’t pay more for this unique look.

Cons

  • A hidden halo’s extra stones and prongs can damage other jewelry when worn together and tend to snag more often than regular halos.
  • Designers need to make room for the hidden halo, which means the center stone sits higher than normal and makes it easier to hit and damage your diamond.
  • Resizing a hidden halo engagement ring is difficult.
  • A hidden halo doesn’t offer as much additional sparkle as other settings, such as traditional halos, three stone styles, and pavé bands.

Ultimately, your personal taste and lifestyle should be the driving forces behind your decision, as hidden halos just aren’t for everyone.

If you prefer sleek, clean silhouettes, work with your hands, or live an active lifestyle that leaves you banging your hands against hard surfaces often, a simple, durable setting may be best for you. Try a traditional solitaire prong or bezel setting with a less ornate metal band for safe but beautiful options.

Or, if you want to show off more sparkle than the hidden halo has to offer, consider a traditional halo setting for more shine. Three-stone rings and pavé styles are also excellent settings for those who want to stand out among the crowd.

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