I have been asked by many friends and acquaintances about the best way to choose a diamond. They want to know what to look for in terms of quality and value. So, I will share with you what my twenty-five years of experience in the mfg and wholesale diamond trade has taught me—I hope this will be helpful to some of you.
This will be a first in a series of continual articles in the art of buying a diamond.
A) Decide on a budget—diamonds of the same size can have price differences of thousands of dollars.
You must know going in what is your price range. Be realistic. Don’t think that you can save unrealistic sums of money on the same quality diamond shopping online at various websites. You will save by comparison shopping—but be aware there are somewhat set prices for diamonds. No dealer or retailer will give a diamond away for a lot less that they can sell easily on the market. Also, remember when buying a diamond engagement ring, your biggest investment is the diamond—not the ring. Don’t fall for the trick some retailers try when they offer the diamond at a lower price- but jack up the price of the mounting.
B) Decide on size and quality. These two decisions go hand in hand. A one carat diamond ring can cost $3000 or $1000. Depends almost solely on quality and where you purchase it. Important here, is that quality doesn’t only mean color of diamond and clarity as in the 4cs. Quality of a diamond has a lot more to it.
Florescence: Don’t buy a diamond with florescence, unless it is a J color or lower. Absolutely! This is where the typical consumer gets taken. For example, a diamond of HSI1 w/ florescence and without can valued thousands of dollars less.
Ideally cut: Look at the proportions of the diamond. If it is too deep or too shallow. Is the table to big or too small. A well cut round diamond should be no more than 62 percent deep and no less than 59 percent deep and the table should measure no more than 61 percent and no less than 56 percent.
Make sure your diamond has at least a Premium Cut Grade from the EGL Labs or Very Good Cut Grade from GIA Lab.