Whether you are thinking of buying loose diamonds for mounting in a piece of diamond jewelry or as an investment, you'll want to educate yourself ahead of time and learn all you can about certified diamonds. Not every gem mounted in a piece of diamond jewelry is valuable, so its important to know what to look for.
Before You Begin
Two things that are necessary to know before you start looking at diamonds for sale are:
1.) the current state of the diamond market
2.) the names of some trustworthy independent appraisers
The second point is very important. If you're buying diamonds for your diamond jewelry - or even looking a diamond engagement rings or other mounted pieces - if the seller refers you to his own in-house appraisal service or one operated by an "acquaintance," at best it's a clear conflict of interest - and at worst, he's out to cheat you.
Don't take that chance when shopping for diamond jewelry. Go out and find a reputable appraiser on your own. Because the diamond market is concentrated and under the control of a relatively few entities, you'll have to do some homework in order to locate an independent appraiser.
What Does "Certified Diamonds" Mean?
When diamonds are "certified," it means that they have been evaluated at a professional gemology lab. There, the gemologist evaluates the loose gems in terms of:
These are objective, measurable characteristics that determine a diamond's grade - but not necessarily its monetary value. The certification however is useful for the appraiser in determining the final value. Certified diamonds are graded and ready to be appraised.
When it comes to individual diamonds that are not yet set in diamond engagement rings or other diamond jewelry, the appraiser uses the grade given in by the gemologist, then factors in characteristics that are not easily quantified, such as cut and fire (sparkle and brilliance). The type of cut can affect the value, especially if the cut is currently popular. "Princess cuts" are fairly popular for use in diamond engagement rings, whereas a square "emerald cut" may be more appropriate for cufflinks and other men's jewelry.
Individual diamonds may or may not be a good investment, but depending on the overall quality, diamond jewelry certainly can be. Whether its diamond engagement rings, brooches, necklaces and bracelets, earrings or even tiaras, it's good to have your diamond jewelry evaluated and appraised, even if its just for the insurance.