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Debunking the Top 10 Diamond Jewelry Myths

By  , Saturday, September 04, 2010

1. Myth: Higher color or clarity grade in a diamond means it is more brilliant.

Reality: Brilliance, or the amount of light reflected in the diamond, is not affected by the clarity or color grade of the stone. The color grade refers to the amount of yellow discoloration in the stone, while the clarity grade refers to the size and number of imperfections in the diamond. In most diamond jewelry, the clarity or color grade of a diamond would have to be very low for the visible brilliance, or sparkle, of the jewelry to be affected. Cut is the single most important factor influencing brilliance.

2. Myth: Carat weight defines the size of a diamond.

Reality: Carat weight is simply the weight of the diamond, while the visible size of the stone will be affected by the depth of the cut. For example a stone with a relatively shallower cut will look larger than a stone of the same carat weight but a deeper cut. However, an extremely shallow or deep cut will drastically reduce the amount of light reflected in the stone and lower the value.

3. Myth: Diamond jewelry is indestructible because diamonds are the hardest substance in existence.

Reality: Although, diamonds are the hardest mineral and can only be scratched by other diamonds, they can still be chipped if not treated properly. Also, diamond jewelry always incorporates other materials—gold, platinum, silver—and delicate features like links, settings and clasps that can be damaged.
fancy yellow custom diamond setting
Fancy Yellow Custom Diamond Setting

4. Myth: Yellow diamonds are more valuable than colorless diamonds.

Reality: A diamond with a low color score (lower than a K) may be visibly tinted yellow, but such a diamond would have a significantly lower value than a colorless diamond. “Fancy colored diamonds” is the industry term for yellow (and other colored) diamonds that have a bright, aesthetically-pleasing tint and a high level of brilliance. Some fancy colored diamonds are indeed more valuable than comparable colorless diamonds.

5. Myth: You can tell if a piece of gold jewelry is real by biting it.

Reality: Old movies aside, biting gold jewelry is not the best way to ascertain its value. Pure gold is soft enough for your teeth to leave a mark, but most jewelry sold is not pure gold, which is also easily damaged for the same reason. 18 karat gold jewelry, the kind used in most diamond jewelry, is hard enough to withstand more pressure.

6. Myth: Sapphires are blue gemstones.

Reality: A sapphire can be blue, but it can also be any other color as well. Yellow, orange and green sapphires can easily be purchased loose or set into diamond jewelry. Rubies are actually just red sapphires, as both terms refer to the same mineral compound, also called corundum.
blue fluorescent diamond
Blue Fluorescent Round-Cut Diamond

7. Blue fluorescent diamonds are more rare and therefore worth more.

Reality: Although blue fluorescent diamonds are rare, they are not worth more than other kinds of diamonds. Blue fluorescence is a faint tinge of the kind of blue reflection to UV light that makes a white shirt glow blue under a UV light. A slight amount of fluorescence in a diamond can hide an unwanted yellow tint, although if the fluorescence is too strong it can make the diamond appear cloudy.
glam diamond gold rings
Glam Diamond Gold Ring

8. Myth Gold is found in three colors: yellow, white and rose.

Reality: Although it is sold that way in jewelry, gold is mined only in yellow form. Pure yellow gold is too soft for use in jewelry, so it mixed with other metals, forming an alloy, before it is made into jewelry. To make the gold appear white or rose-colored, specific combinations of metals such as iron, silver, copper and aluminum are used to tint the gold alloy. Additionally, many white gold pieces are dipped in rhodium to add a pure white shine That is why many pieces of white gold jewelry may appear yellowish after many years of wear.
pearl stud earrings
Pearl Stud Earrings

9. Myth: Pearls can be dissolved in vinegar.

Reality: Many people know the legend in which Cleopatra dissolved a valuable pearl ring in vinegar and then drank it to show off her wealth to Marc Antony. In reality, pearls, which are made of calcium carbonate can dissolve in vinegar, but it will take a very long time unless the pearls are crushed.

10. Myth: Diamonds are the most rare stone in the world.

Reality: Although jewelry-grade diamonds are quite rare, comprising only 20% of all diamonds mined, they are still not the rarest mineral. Painite, a red or brown-colored mineral, is often considered to be the world’s rarest mineral, with only eighteen known specimens as of 2005.
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