Buying Guide: Jewelry Settings
One of the most important elements to consider when buying an engagement ring or any other gemstone jewelry is the setting. The setting is the metal base that holds the gemstone in place. There are many different types of settings, which differ in style as well as the security with which they hold the stone in place. Take a look at our guide to learn about the different types of settings and choose the one that best matches your style and preferences.

Prong Setting: This is the most common and popular setting, which uses strips of metal that are bent over the stone to hold it in place. Most settings have 4 or 6 prongs. This setting is often preferred because it maximizes the exposure of the stone and allows it to be set at nearly any height or position. Prongs are used in a variety of settings, such as basket, trellis, and compass point settings. Prongs may be prone to snagging and can get bent or loosen over time.
Bezel Setting: This is the most common setting besides prongs. In a bezel setting, the stone is surrounded by a thin, custom fit metal rim. In a full bezel setting, the stone is completely surrounded, while a partial bezel setting leaves the sides of the stone open. While this setting covers more of the stone than a prong setting, it protects the stone and is less likely to snag or come loose.
Pavé Setting: This type of setting (pronounced pav-ay) creates a surface encrusted with small stones. The stones are set into holes in the metal, and then grains of metal are pulled up to hold the stones in place. Because small stones are so much less expensive than large ones, this is an affordable setting that still provides lots of sparkle.
Channel Setting: In a channel setting, the stones are secured between two bars of metal along the top and bottom. This setting can be used with a variety of different gemstone cuts, and is especially popular for diamond rings and tennis bracelets.

Tension Setting: This stylish modern setting holds the stone in place between the two sides of the band, making it appear suspended. Tiny grooves are cut into the sides of the band, and the stone is inserted and held in place by the pressure of the band on either side. Some settings use added prongs or bezels for extra security.
Bar Setting: This setting is similar to a channel setting, but the stones are set between vertical bars of metal, rather than horizontal channels. This setting leaves the stones open on the top and bottom.
Invisible Setting: This is one of the more difficult—and expensive—settings, in which stones are fit together in such a way that metal can’t be seen between them. This is achieved by making small grooves on the bottom of the stones and sliding them onto tracks that hold them in place. This setting is mainly used with straight-edged cuts so the stones are completely touching.
Burnish Setting: With this type of setting, the stone is set deep inside the band so the top of the stone sits flush with the band. This style is popular with men’s wedding bands.