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Image: Bridget Flohe

Before this advertising strategy, just one in ten engagement rings featured diamonds. However, the De Beers campaign was so successful that by the 1990s 80 percent of proposal incentives featured the rocks. And men who planned to get down on one knee were now encouraged to spend up to three months’ salary to snag the partner of their dreams.

Image: Vitaly

And many hopefuls were willing to spend high on such an emotive purchase. The idea that diamonds last forever became a sparkly symbolic metaphor for the everlasting commitment of marriage. Never mind that “A Diamond is Forever” came courtesy of the Philadelphian advertising agency NW Ayer and Son in 1947. In the U.S. today, men and women expect to pay somewhere between $1,000 and $5,000 for the perfect ring.

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Image: Ilya Pavlov

So, with all that in mind, some people have certain expectations of what their engagement ring should look like and how much it should cost. As a result, when one woman found that her partner’s choice of jewelry underwhelmed her, she was moved to complain about it online. Consequently, in August 2017, she vented her concerns on the user forum of the parental website Mumsnet.

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