Four-prong rings vs six-prong rings. Many jewellery buyers face this common dilemma when shopping for new bling. Let’s go over the details and see which type is a better choice.
Gemstone Visibility and Brilliance
One of the most crucial differences between four and six-prong rings is in their effect on the gemstone.
As a rule, the fewer prongs your ring has, the bigger part of the gemstone is visible and the more light will enter the stone. That’s why gemstones mounted in four-prong setting exhibit more brilliance and sparkle.
Four-prong mounting makes diamonds look larger, while six-prong setting makes the stone look a bit smaller since more of its surface is covered. In addition, the more prongs your ring has, the more light is blocked from entering the stone. As a result, the six-prong setting makes diamonds and other gemstones look less brilliant and sparkly.
As mentioned above gemstones set in a four-prong setting are more visible, however, such a mounting makes round diamonds look a bit square due to the configuration of the prongs.
This effect is mainly noticed with the round stones. Other cuts are not that much affected.
In contrast, if you have a round diamond set in a six-prong ring, it won’t change the shape of the stone, since the form of the prongs is creating an illusion of a circle.
Cleaning and Safety
In general, the fewer prongs your ring has, the easier it is to clean. That’s why when it comes to maintenance, the four-prong ring is the winner.
The six-prong setting makes the cleaning of stones a bit harder, especially the lower part where dirt tends to accumulate more.
Although six-prong rings are harder to clean, there is still a big advantage. This type of setting is more secure.
We all know that prongs wear down with time and when they are worn, they can bend or even break.
If you have a six-prong ring and one of the prongs breaks, you still have intact prongs that hold your stone securely. Besides, six-prong setting better protects your stones from accidental hits.
The situation is a bit risky with four prongs. If one of the prongs breaks, your gemstone is at a higher risk of coming loose and falling out. Since stones with four prongs have less of their surface covered by metal, they are more exposed to damages during the wear.
Choosing Between Four and Six Prongs
Here is the main question and it all depends on what is more important to you: safety or appearance.
In case if the appearance is in the first place, opt for a four-prong ring. This is especially true for non-round and smaller stones as a four-prong setting will make them look a bit bigger.
Don’t forget to inspect your ring regularly for bent or broken prongs and have problems fixed as soon as you notice them.
A six-prong ring is a better choice for those who are more concerned about security. This type of setting looks perfect with round and bigger stones.
In case you care about protection but still want a four-prong setting, get it made of platinum. This metal is very durable and wears much more slowly than gold.