Conflict-free bling from Brilliant Earth … and "push presents"

October 23 2009 | offbeatbride
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Brilliant Earth's Flora Ring in 18K white gold.
Brilliant Earth's Flora Ring in 18K white gold.

When Brilliant Earth contacted us, I set to feverishly pawing their online wares and falling in love with their gorgeous (and ethical!) jewelry. Being the diligent gestater (and sparkly-thing admirer) I am, I saw those sparkly rings and my mind went to "Push present! Must bookmark!"

Ariel, meanwhile, wasn't so sure about the concept of a blingy push present. The conversation went sort of like this:

Ariel: …But, don't push presents sort of commodify the act of childbirth?

Me: I see push presents as one way of saying, "Thanks for sacrificing your figure, martinis, and sleep for ten months. You've brought me joy and a family, have something almost as pretty as you are!

Ariel: But does the concept reinforce traditional gender roles — women are valued for their bodies and babies, while men just make money and buy women pretty things?

Me: I honestly can't think of a better way to commemorate the day you brought a new life into the world. And Brilliant Earth has amazing ethics with that whole non-profit fund thing.

Ariel: Well, no argument from me there. I've been impressed with Brilliant Earth's ethics ever since I featured them on Offbeat BrideI love their values! I mean, if someone's gonna buy some bling, there's pretty much no better place to do it. I snagged myself one of their sapphire rings and I wear it every day — at least I did until my pregnant fingers got too swollen….

Regardless of your thoughts on push presents, Brilliant Earth is dedicated to providing an ethical alternative to current diamond industry standards. All their craftsmanship is exquisite (check out the detailing on this Bamboo Ring!) and their materials are ethically sourced.

They have a treasure trove of lovely things that would made ideal birthday, anniversary, or Mother's Day gifts. Take a peek and start bookmarking!

Oh and PS: What do YOU think of the idea of push presents?

  1. I think the thing that really gets me is the name. I've been pretty much squarely in Ariel (and other's) camp about "push presents" but admittedly from a knee jerk reaction place. When I sit and think about it, my mom has a beautiful ruby ring my dad bought her when I was born. They were definitely not the bling type, but after a very difficult pregnancy, and a very traumatic delivery my dad bought her the ring to celebrate my successfully making it into the world. I like the idea of a gift or memento that commemorates such an important event, but I object to the association of pushing=gift. I have friends who have both gotten tattoos to commemorate the birth of their children, which totally worked for them. I have to admit as I looked at the Brilliant Earth site I found myself thinking: "hey maybe it's time that me and baby-daddy got some rings for each other" (we're not married). But I think that's something that would work specifically for us, I don't expect it to become a cultural trend or anything.

    As a side note I do just have to say that I so enjoy the level of conversation that takes place on this site. I'll admit I saw the top post about "push presents" and nearly clicked away, thinking that just was not my bag, but decided to give it a read and then the subsequent comments and found myself spending the morning really thinking the points everyone raised. So yeah for this community for being so rad!

    • Emira, I just wanted to thank you from the bottom of my little editorial heart for your kind words re: the level of conversation on offbeat mama. It's something I've worked really, really, REALLY hard to cultivate, and it means a lot to me to have it recognized. 🙂

  2. I'm more on Erika's side, but I loathe the term "push present." It's not like the father is cutting mama a check and gruffly saying "this is what I consider a just reward for you bearing my son," as he thrusts it into your hands while you lay on the floor bleeding. And the fact of the matter is that no matter how egalitarian you are, only women can bear babies, and only women can lactate, and if a family wants their own (genetically I mean) child, mama's the one who puts in more work up front. Simple fact. So I definitely won't say no to a little momento of the occasion after that.

    And I would love, love, love to be an old lady showing my jewelry box to someone. "This is my engagement ring, (insert lovey-dovey story), this is my wedding band, (insert lovey-dovey story), this he gave me on our Xth anniversary, and this one here…this is the ring I received on the day I became a mother (misty eyes all around). And I would hope it would be passed down in the family, and maybe melted down and reworked into a new big-occasion gift for someone someday.

  3. I also hate the term push present, although, I have to be honest, I just heard it for the first time. I could generally take or leave the ring idea. However, the thing that I do like about it is kind of what I like about a wedding ring. Not "this is the material way we have chosen to quantify our love and commitment to each other" but "oh, I wasn't thinking about X,Y, or Z great thing about my husband, but I just glanced at my hand and was reminded." I think that having a ring on my finger as a visual reminder of that incredibly powerful feeling I felt towards both of my kids as soon as they were born might help me (a little) during those times when they're driving me up the frikkin wall.

  4. I'm also not a fan of a "push present" because present, to me, means that one person is giving something to the other, and here it almost has tones of payment. I'm not comfortable with that. BUT, a celebratory gift, where the ring/necklace/gift is meant as a token to further celebrate having a new family member and entering a new phase of life… now that's something I would support. Same action with a different intent, but I guess the intent means a lot to me.

  5. Yet another expensive gift men will be expected or pressured to purchase? Seriously? As if the diamond industry isn't bad enough…and this has nothing to with the ethics in how they get their materials. Just more consumerism, and women using these gifts to compare with their friends and who is "loved" the most. It is really gross. As for appreciating the woman who just birthed your baby…what about a back rub? Some kind words? Flowers? Getting up for the midnight feeding? A comfy rocking chair? Why on earth does the natural beauty of childbirth (or marriage) have to be commemorated with thousands of dollars of fine jewelry? I really hope this does not become a trend. One more thing for women to be insecure and competitive about, and one more thing to make men break their banks. And in the midst of this fine economy, no less.

  6. not a huge fan of the term "push present", but i know what is (generally) meant by it and i do like the idea. i don't feel that it needs to be jewelry, or even anything material at all. the fact of the matter is, yes, we are (usually) consenting when going in, and yes, having a child is a great gift in and of itself, but carrying, birthing, and caring for that child is a LOT of work, and in general it's the mom that does 99% of that work, especially when the new baby is breastfed. i hate the idea of a gift to recompense the mom for her efforts, but something on the dad's part to show that he recognizes the extreme effort involved and is, well, in awe of it would be nice. (and i'm not talking about picking up on the housework or any of that…lets face it, that's kind of the bare minimum these fellas can do when the mothers of their children are recovering from childbirth, etc.) it can be a simple, heartfelt, verbal, "you are amazing…thank you." but i feel like it should be there.

  7. I'm also not keen on the idea of getting something "for" the birth, but I appreciate the idea of sharing something to commemorate the day your child arrived in this world – whether it be an exchange of rings, a new rocking chair, or a tree/rose bush planted in your garden. As with an engagement, you are after all in this together, so why not have something you can both enjoy using/looking at/remembering?

  8. I had never heard the term "push present" before, although I guess that is what I asked my honey to get me. He is terrible with gifts, doesn't know when to give them, or what to give. I wanted something from him to commemorate the birth of our baby, so i asked him to pick something out from a particular store that I like. He bought me a beautiful necklace by FernWorks ( that is a maple seed set in resin. it is lovely and very symbolic, and he also wrote me a wonderful card, that is even more meaningful than the necklace.

  9. We're hoping to adopt so I guess I won't qualify for a "push present" since the only pushing I've done is to move years of paperwork around in circles

    • Absolutely not! The term "push present" is just how it's known, I suppose, but it's a bit of a misnomer.

      Truth is, it's really a gesture of appreciation for all the hard work you've done to get to parenthood. Adoption is a huge, heartbreaking pain in the behind, and if at the end a piece of jewelry or an iPod or whatever would remind you forever of that amazing day you brought your child home, then heck yes you qualify!

      • If a couple were adopting, wouldn't they have to give each other "push presents?" Or would it be given to the person who'd completed the most paperwork?

  10. My dad purchased a sort of "push present" on the day I was born – he went out and bought a Sears sewing machine. But NOT so that my mother would sew – they both shared equal sewing time as I grew up! But I always chuckle that my father's celebration of my birth was to go and buy a sewing machine 🙂

  11. I only heard about push presents after I had my child, and I think it's pretty silly. I also looked into conflict free diamonds and such … there are some really beautiful ones out there and I wanted one for a while (from greenkarat). But ultimately I decided that even if I were wearing a conflict free diamond, no one else would know it was conflict free. I'd just be another person walking around with a diamond on my hand, perpetuating diamond-lust.

  12. The phrase "push present" kinda makes me throw up in my mouth a little. I did ask my husband for 2 gifts when the baby came. 1. a weekly house cleaner for 3 months. 2. a new point-and-shoot camera. He might have been able to get me some jewelry for the same price, but f-that! I got my house cleaned every week, including when my mom was visiting, and that made me feel happier than any jewels could have. Sure it didn't last forever, but I could just take my baby and go out of the house, without feeling like I needed to be "more productive" and that is a feeling I cherish, lo these many months later…. (ps, my mother? Has 3 diamond rings for each of her 3 children. hope I inherit them 🙂 lol )

  13. never before in my life had i heard of a push present until now. strange and disgusting as a concept. sure if your partner gives you a nice gift in love and appreciation thats one thing but isnt it more than enough of a blessing and gift to have your newborn? i mean, come on now folks! expecting and wanting a "push present" is greedy and weird. don't get pregnant if you want your body and life to remain the same as it always was.

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