Real Diamonds: How to check if a diamond is real?
A real diamond is rare and valuable. It is typically white and sparkly. Because people love them and pay big money to own them, there has been a major effort through the years to develop affordable diamond imitations. Some of the newer ones are so convincing that many frauds have been perpetrated with them. So how do you tell real diamonds from the imposters?
The first thing to understand is that before you spend good money for a “diamond” you should always have it double checked by a qualified expert – preferably a Graduate Gemologist. If the diamond has been certified by a reputable gem lab like the AGSL or GIA, it is much easier to verify authenticity. Your expert will perform a diamond check matching the measurements, weight, color and clarity characteristics against the lab report. Today many diamonds are also laser inscribed with identifying information which makes verification even easier.
As a layman some of the things you can look for to determine if a diamond is real are facet integrity, clarity characteristics and carat weight. If you have access to a jewelers loupe (10x magnification) or a magnifying, look at the edges of the facet junctions of the stone. If they are abraded, chipped or rounded (do not all come to a fine edge), chances are it is not a real diamond. Diamonds that have been worn for many years can also have some chips and abrasions, so this is not a conclusive test.
If the diamond is loose (not set in a piece of jewelry) you can check its weight. Real diamonds are composed of pure carbon, a light element, and therefore weigh less than most of the simulants. For instance, a well proportioned 1.00 carat round diamond will measure approximately 6.5 millimeters in diameter. Most simulants of the same dimension will weigh well over 1.50 carats.
Because modern technology has produced many synthetic and simulated materials that are very close in appearance to real diamonds extreme caution should be exercised when buying. It is extremely important that you buy from, or enlist the evaluation services of, a reputable and well trained professional before parting with your hard earned money for a diamond or piece of fine jewelry. Remember- before you write a check for a diamond, get a diamond check from an expert.
For more specific questions ask our experts