If you are shopping for a diamond ring, you would like to think you could buy a really nice one at a somewhat reasonable price. But what do you have to go on? You don’t know diamonds from ice cubes. That diamond looks gorgeous in the jewelry store showroom, with all of its brilliant lights, but how is it going to look after you leave the store?
Enter certified diamonds.
What Is a Certified Diamond?
A certified diamond has a certificate that accompanies it. The certificate is provided by an independent lab that specializes in analyzing diamonds for their color, clarity, carat-weight and cut. So, for you, there’s no guesswork. The certificate proves the diamond is what it purports to be. Gemologists are scientists who specialize in the characteristics of gems, and they have evaluated the stone and certified its worth.
This third party lab is often referred to as a “grading lab”. There are a handful of high quality grading labs, and they each have different standards for the certificates they produce.
Here is a list of the best labs:
- AGS (American Gem Society)
- GIA (Gemological Institute of America)
- EGI (European Gemologicacl Laboratory)
- IGI (International Gemological Institute)
- CIBJO (World Jewelry Confederation)
Do I Really Need a Certificate?
Well, no, you don’t necessarily have to have a certificate, but it does provide some peace of mind that you are buying a product that has independent verification of its value. The diamond is “graded” by the lab, so you will know from the experts exactly what quality you are buying. Because of the involvement of the third party, however, you will pay somewhat more for a certified stone.
This cost may be offset by the fact that you know just what you are buying. A stone with similar cost without a certificate may not be of the quality you can buy with the certificate.
How Do I Know the Certificate Is for the Diamond I’m Looking At?
Ask the jeweler to show you the laser inscription on the diamond. This inscription is a unique identifier and should match the identification number on the certificate.
What Is An Appraisal?
An appraisal differs from a certificate in that the appraisal puts a price on the jewelry, whereas the certificate does not. The appraisal may take the certificate into account, however.
Choosing your diamond may seem like guesswork, but the certificate takes the guesswork out of the equation. With the characteristics outlined in this document, you will be able to choose with confidence. You will then be able to point with pride to your purchase, knowing it was made wisely.