There are a few times in life when you’ll settle for nothing less than perfect. Proposing to the love of your life is one of them. We’ve done the homework to give you advice and tips on some of the most perfect proposals – ideas that will make them weak in the knees as they say “Yes!” and brag about it to their friends and family for years afterwards.

The thought of getting engaged stirs up lots of emotions. From the time you decide that she’s the one to the moment you pop the question and put the diamond ring on her finger, you may experience sleepless nights, visit several websites looking for advice, and meet with your friends for moral support.

Now let’s start alleviating your fears with some reliable answers to the most frequently asked proposal and engagement ring questions.

How Much Should I Spend On The Engagement Ring?
What you spend is a matter as personal as boxers or briefs. You will probably hear that three months’ salary is the rule. But that isn’t possible for many people and isn’t necessary to get a gorgeous engagement ring that will make her heart turn cartwheels of joy.

Remember: the engagement ring is a symbol of your love for her. Whether that is a simple ring that costs $100 or a five carat diamond set in platinum that sets you back $60,000, the meaning is the same: you love her and want to be with her forever. Spend the amount that YOU are comfortable with on a ring that will withstand daily wear for 30, 40, or 50+ years.

Here’s some simple logic to help you out: Unlike clothing, a plasma TV, or even a car, the engagement ring will be worn 365 days a year until death-do-you-part. That is a long time! You may have heard about dollar-cost averaging when investing in your retirement plan. Well, you could also approach the ring purchase the same way.

Engagement Ring Cost: $4200
Number of Years Ring is Worn on Left Hand: 50 years
Annualized Ring Cost: $84
Daily Cost: 23 cents

Now, think about this: your car payment is $350 per month (or $4200 per year). You might keep that car four, five, maybe six years, and then trade it in or sell it. Fifty years from now you probably won’t remember much, if anything about that car you spent over $20,000 on when you were young.

Bottom line, the amount you should spend on the engagement ring is up to you. You want your soon to be fiancé to love it, show it off to her friends and colleagues, make the girlfriends and wives of your friends jealous, and possibly even pass it down as an heirloom for generations – and those future generations aren’t so far off.

It is imperative to consider spending the greatest percentage of your budget on the part of the ring that will give you the most satisfaction. A smaller diamond that is flawless will cost the same as a larger diamond with inclusions, so you’ll need to decide if you’d be happiest with a larger carat weight even if you may see a few tiny flaws (inclusions), or a smaller diamond that is close to perfect.

How do I know her ring size?
When sizing your ring, there are many factors to consider. One factor is that most people have knuckles wider than where the ring is actually going to sit. Also, in the summertime, your fingers are a little more swollen than they will be in winter time or when your hands are cold.

Try to find a ring that she wears on her ring finger regularly. When measuring your ring, measure the longest distance across your ring diameter in centimeters, and then multiply by ten to convert to millimeters.

Below is an actual chart for comparison.

If you can’t find a ring, get super sneaky and measure the distance around her finger with a piece of string or paper. Take the string to a professional jeweler and they should be able to help you find the right size.

REMEMBER: It’s easier to size down, than up. Make sure to ask if the engagement ring is resizable. You can always guesstimate and get it resized once you pop the big question.

How should I propose?
Remember that everyone is going to want to know how you popped the question, so make it special and memorable.

Try to incorporate your personalities into your proposal. Does she enjoy the outdoors? Plan a proposal at the beach or a romantic park. Is she a movie buff? Film your proposal and have them play it just for the two of you in the theatre.

Don’t make your plan too complicated.

While creativity is a plus, stay focused on what’s really important – the proposal itself. If you’re consumed with worry about whether or not the sailboat will get to the luau in time, you’re thinking too hard about the wrong thing.

What you say is the most important part of the proposal. And to get this right, you need to speak from the heart, expressing yourself with love, honesty and sincerity. And if you know your heart tends to stutter, get shy or put its foot in its mouth, plan what you say in advance. Once you get to the “Will you marry me?” part, it’s her turn to speak.