Square Engagement Rings in Dupont

5 Tips on What To Look For When Buying Diamonds For Wedding Rings

A wedding, or an engagement in  Dupont, is one of the most important events in every couple’s life. One of the best ways of making the experience memorable is by choosing the right ring to symbolize the love you have for one another. While most couples would like to get the most beautiful ring they can lay their hands on, budgetary restrictions can be a challenge. However, it is possible to find an ideal ring based on your budget.

For anyone looking for precious diamonds for engagement rings and wedding rings in Dupont, they should consider going about the process carefully. There are various dealers in the market, some of who may sell you fake diamonds. Here are a few useful tips on what to look for when looking for precious diamonds for engagement or wedding rings.

Consider the Diamond Cut

1. Any expert will tell you that the cut is the most important thing to consider when buying diamonds in Dupont. The main reason behind this is that the cut usually influences the sparkle. A diamond may be clear and feature a high quality color grade, but if the cut is poor, it may still appear dull. The dealer you buy from should be able to cut your diamond in the proper proportions. If your budget can allow it, choose a diamond with the highest cut grade.

Diamond Color

2.  Contrary to common belief, lack of color in your diamonds denotes a higher color grade. Some people go for pale yellow diamond, without knowing that it is low quality. To avoid such an experience, ask the diamond dealer to give you grade H or higher. Near colorless diamond ranges from grade G to J, but it may be quite expensive.

Clarity Diamonds can also be chosen based on their clarity levels.

3. This is usually not a very important factor to consider, considering that the precious stones usually come with imperfections, known as inclusions. These tiny imperfections may not be easy to detect, and they may only be seen through a microscope. However, the fewer there are, the higher the clarity grade of your diamonds. If your budget can be stretched further, consider buying grade VS1 grade or higher.

Consider the Diamond’s Carat Weight

4.  Unlike common belief, carat does not mean the size of the diamond, but its actual weight. Carat and cut must be considered side by side, because no matter the size of the diamond, a poor cut grade can make your precious stones look smaller. Another important fact to keep in mind is that the more the weight of the diamond, the more you will pay for it. Therefore, you should consider going for a less heavy stone with a high grade cut.

Ask for Proof of Certification

5. There is nothing as unfortunate as buying diamonds for your special event only to realize that they are of poor quality, or that they were stolen. To avoid such an eventuality, always ask the dealer in Dupont to show you the copy of diamond certification.

With these tips, you should be able to make the right choice when buying precious diamonds in Dupont for you engagement or wedding.

diamond ring price

Dupont How to Buy a Diamond And The 4 Biggest Mistakes When Buying a Diamond

Not all sellers give ruby grading lab reports (aka diamond high quality reports) to their customers. So my basic recommendations to you is to keep your money in your pocket when managing such jewelry experts.

Just buy a diamond interaction ring if it comes with the initial diamond quality record.

A lab report is an independent assessment of the 4Cs of a loose diamond as well as includes a plotted representation of the stone's clarity characteristics and also a graphic depiction of the rock's proportions. Having such a record enables you to contrast diamonds of different qualities as well as ultimately assists you make an even more informed buying choice.

A retailer might reduce edges as well as not supply a laboratory report or a dishonest vendor could give a fake one as a result of the time, trouble and expenditure he'll bear to getting a rock rated.

Yeah - there is a rate for grading a ruby (though that cost is ultimately paid by the customer), plus the shipping and also insurance fees for sending out the diamond to the lab. And also let us not forget the chance price of a jewelry expert not having the diamond in his shop available for a couple of weeks while the grading occurs.

Nevertheless, a diamond grading record may also not be readily available due to the fact that the expenses to obtaining one may affect also heavily on the final rate of the ring. For instance, a 0.3 ct diamond ring costing $250 state, may set you back around $75 to be rated as well as have the report number inscribed on the band on the ruby. As you look for that excellent diamond involvement ring for your sweetie, you'll find that there is a hodgepodge of labs asserting to give credible diamond grading records. However I would just place my cash on ...

The Premier Diamond Grading Laboratory Information

Yes, all diamond high quality records are not developed equivalent. Within the market, it is an agreement that the 2 leading labs are GIA-GTL (Gemological Institute of The U.S.A.'s Treasure Trade Laboratory) and the AGS (American Treasure Culture Laboratories).

The GCAL (Treasure Qualification as well as Guarantee Lab) likewise provides highly related to records or "ruby certificates" as they are referred to by GCAL. The GIA has the toughest worldwide online reputation for self-reliance as well as uniformity. Due to their constant shade and clearness strictness guidelines, the globe's largest as well as most pricey rubies have been sent there for grading decades. In 2006, GIA-GTL included a two-dimensional cut grading system for round fantastic rubies.

AGS uses the strictest cut criteria in the market. It utilizes a three-dimensional light efficiency metric that could quality a number of ruby forms. In truth, it is the only cut grading system that is recognized by the clinical community.

Exactly what is even more, its Ruby High quality File utilizes an one-of-a-kind and also exclusive 0 to 10 grading system to evaluate the 4 Cs - a system which is simpler to understand compared to GIA's grading system. As a matter of fact, AGS even goes the additional step by relating their 0-10 rating range to other types of rating. As an example, the traditional VS1 ruby quality rating is a 3 on the AGS Ruby Top Quality File.

Diamond Coverage - The Drawbacks

1. Diamond grading is not standard or controlled and hence you could come throughout tier 2 laboratories that utilize looser guidelines to the tier 1 grading labs mentioned over. If you buy a ruby that has been rated by a rate 2 laboratory, you may end up paying a lot more for a minimal top quality diamond. So as an example, a ruby ranked a "F" in shade at a tier 2 laboratory might obtain a G, H, or lower shade ranking at a much more respectable lab. The sector additionally marks down diamonds rated by lesser known labs by about 15-30% or more. So either you only buy a diamond graded by a tier 1 lab or you approve that you could be getting a lesser high quality diamond compared to exactly what is mentioned on the record if that ruby is rated by a lesser recognized lab.

2. Many huge chain shops have substantial contracts with minimal well-known labs with "softer" diamond grading standards. A few of these softer laboratories put "suggested substitute worths" on the lab records - values which are more than exactly what shops means market the rubies for. So a salesman in a chain store may state to you, "Look at the good deal you are getting here. We are marketing you this diamond involvement ring for $2500 however the report states that the recommended replacement value is $4000." Wow - exactly what a deal - NOT! This is why it is much better that you rely on only independent rate 1 laboratories.

Likewise remember that reputable ruby rating reports are not evaluations and also do not offer appraisal figures. Diamond appraisals are typically blatantly filled with air and are not something you'll wish to depend on.

3. Ruby reports are riddled with disclaimers that define that absolutely nothing is "licensed" or ensured which the laboratories are not liable for errors. As a matter of fact, the GIA provides a disclaimer of kinds on their web site relating to the use of words "license." The web site says:

"It is incorrect to state that trainees, graduates, their companies, or certain gems are "certified" by GIA. The Gemological Institute of America does not certify anybody or anything. Neither a pupil neither a grad who has actually been awarded a certification or diploma, nor a treasure which has actually been rated or recognized by GIA has been accredited by GIA".

So it is possible that you the customer is left holding the bag needs to a mistake in a report is later discovered. Courts have regularly ruled that sellers, not laboratories, are responsible for such mistakes. Why? Due to the fact that the labs suggested in advance that their reports could not be held liable.

Thankfully, there are a couple means to give on your own much more purchaser protection:

A. You could fly to India where jewelry experts use a life time buyback plan to their clients. Also costly to fly?

B. You could find one of the 20% people jewelers who offer completely adhered diamonds. These are diamonds that are marketed with lifetime breakage, lifetime trade-in as well as lifetime buyback policies.

C. Not as good a treatment as buying a completely adhered diamond however you might buy a diamond that features an actual "certificate" and also not a report. "Qualified diamonds do come with guaranties" albeit for much shorter durations.

Accreditation Some sellers refer to a "ruby report" as a "licensed diamond" but practically this is not deal with. From a lawful perspective, a ruby record is a merely an expert opinion though in truth, aspects of a diamond grading record are not simply opinions.

As an example, a ruby's carat (weight) can be properly figured out as well as its cut grade by measuring its optical performance or by referring to a computer model. A certification on the other hand is a statement of fact - a document for which the issuer accepts lawful responsibility as well as will make restitution to the customer for errors.

Some top diamond grading laboratories provide both reports as well as certificates. AGS provides Diamond High quality Records (non-certified reports) and Ruby Quality Certificates. Diamond Quality Certificates are prepared specifically for AGS retail jewelry experts as well as offers guaranties from getting involved American Treasure Culture member shops.

GCAL accredits it's diamond grading additionally. Its 100% money-back warranty policy stands for a duration of 2 years from the date on the relevant certificate. This policy makes certain the accuracy of the cut, color and quality grades and also the carat weight.

A record or certificate should will have a number on it that may or could not be engraved on a diamond. You will have the ability to go into that number on the site of the certifying laboratory to examine a report's credibility.

Aspects Of A Ruby Grading Record Ruby rating records are always advancing yet certain element needs to stay the very same. For instance, the:

The Report #. This number is offered as well as tape-recorded in a lab's document and also might or may not be inscribed on a diamond's girdle. You can enter the report number on a rating lab's website to examine the credibility of the diamond quality record or to obtain even more information regarding the diamond. Shape & Aspect Style: This is the outline and also the reducing design utilized for the aspect arrangement. There are 3 fundamental aspect styles - "brilliant cut, step cut and also blended cutting style" and also 12 basic forms which consist of notables such as round great and princess cut" rubies.

Dimensions: This describes dimension (not weight) of a ruby. Size consists of measurements such as length, size, weight and also size. A dimension is normally listed to the hundredth of a millimeter. Dimensions play a substantial role in how a ruby sparkles.

Carat weight Weight: The weight of a ruby is measured to the hundredth of a carat weight and also some even offer such action to the thousandth of a carat weight (1.123 ct.). Carat weight is one of the most objective and also the simplest to recognize of the 4Cs because all one needs to do is weight the stone. Shade Quality: This informs you the level of color lack in the ruby. The less color the higher the grade.

Diamonds are typically graded from D-Z; the closer to "D" the whiter the diamond. You must never see diamond shade array such as (G-H, I-J-K, and so forth) on a ruby report. You should just see shade varieties on assessments for rocks that are placed.

Quality Quality: Basically every diamond has interior imperfections called incorporations as well as outside flaws called imperfections. A diamond is rated inning accordance with the dimension, kind, location and amount of these problems.

Clarity qualities range from Flawless (FL) - Included. Labs make use of a couple experts to grade the clearness of a diamond in order to create a much more precise reading.

Cut Grade: More recent diamond reports consist of a cut quality for conventional round brilliant rubies. Cut thinks about the brilliance, fire and scintillation of the diamond. Cut grade varies from Outstanding - Poor.

Various other elements you might stumble upon on a ruby record consist of the gloss, symmetry, fluorescence and proportion. Equipped with this information, you are better able to make an evaluation of the high quality of diamond that is placed in an engagement ring.

princess cut diamond

The Big 4 Cs For Loose Diamonds

Dupont

To begin our attribute on various sorts of gemstones, we will certainly begin with the very best and most popular gemstone of them all the ruby. The ruby is the best gems. It has very few weak points and also lots of toughness. It sparkles with its amazing worth as well as emotional value. It is utilized in wedding event rings to represent limitless love or used as gifts/jewelry to be given to enjoyed ones. But the diamond is a lot greater than its infinite appeal.

The diamond derives its name from the Greek work adamas meaning unsurpassable. In solidity, there is no contrast. The diamond rates in the Mohs scale a 10 which is the hardest compound on Planet. Its reducing resistance is 140 times that of the ruby and sapphire, the gemstones(Diamond) that are following in the Mohs scale in firmness. The ruby's optical residential properties such as gloss and inflexibility make it special as well as quickly differentiated from other replicas. Delight in!

* History of Diamonds

The first videotaped ruby go back around 800 B.C. in India. Some believe it also went back 6,000 years ago. The rubies were utilized as attractive objectives and as talismans to ward off evil as well as offer defense in battle. During the Dark Ages, diamonds were even stated to be made use of as a medical help. Spiritual doctors even told people that if they hold a ruby in a hand and also make the indication of the cross would, it would certainly cure as well as health problem as well as recover wounds.

Diamonds came to be a lot more preferred during the 19th century as a result of exploration of diamond down payments in South Africa. This exploration results in enhanced supply, enhanced reducing and also polishing methods, and growth in economy. In 1979, geologists discovered the Argyle pipe in Australia which to this date is the richest diamond down payment worldwide. Argyle, ever since, alone is accountable for providing over one third of the globe's diamonds each year.

* Diamonds: Exactly how are they developed?

Rubies is composed of an allotrope of carbons that are developed in high-pressure, high-temperature conditions. Diamonds are generated 90 miles under the Earth's surface at temperatures of regarding 2200 levels Fahrenheit. Diamonds are developed deep within the earth as well as eventually, over very long durations of time, push their method to the earth's surface area, generally via volcanic eruptions.

The age of these rubies from underneath the surface of the planet are from 1 to 3.3 billion years of ages! When diamonds are created and start their climb to the planet's surface, they go through networks where the lava from the volcano climbs to the surface, grabbing rubies along the road and eventually transferring them externally, where they are at some point located and mined.

* The 4 C's of Diamonds

There are four distinctive attributes that establish the worth and also high quality of a diamond. These are the shade, cut, clarity as well as carat. Otherwise referred to as the 4 C's of a diamond. In the adhering to, we will certainly discuss these functions thoroughly.

* Color

In the last newsletter, we touch based on the shade of gemstones as being one of the most important attribute because of that color is one of the most apparent function. The ideal diamond needs to show up clear as well as colorless but this is not the case for all rubies. Rubies can come in any kind of color of the rainbow most usual color is a color of yellow or brown. The Geological Institute of America(GIA) have developed a guideline to quality diamond shade. This guideline contains a text system that ranges from the alphabet D - Z. Please see listed below:

D E F No Color G H I J Nearly Anemic K L M Faintly tinted, can not rarely be seen and usually yellow in color N O P Q R Lightly tinted, normally yellow. Could be seen with the naked eye S T U V W X Y Z Tinted, begins from yellow and also advances to brown

* Clearness

The cut a ruby is figured out by the diamond's proportion such as its form, size as well as depth. The cut identifies just what is called the ruby's "brilliance". Even if the ruby itself has perfect shade as well as clarity, with a poor cut the ruby will have a boring sparkle. This is because the cut identifies just how light trips within the ruby. The Gemological Institute of America has actually also designed a clarity grading system to rate diamond clarity. This grading system consists of Flawless (Fl), Inside Perfect (IF), Really Really Somewhat Included (VV1 or VV2), Extremely Slightly Consisted Of(VS1 or VS2), A Little Included(SI1 or SI2), and also Included(I1, I2, as well as I3). Although this system had actually been added to the diamond market, it is not extensively used. This is because of the fact that it took a great deal of method and also training to incorporate it.

* Cut

The cut a ruby is established by the diamond's percentage such as its form, size and deepness. The cut determines exactly what is called the ruby's "luster". Even if the ruby itself has ideal color and clarity, with an inadequate cut the ruby will have a dull radiance. This is because the cut establishes exactly how light travels within the diamond.

There are 3 kinds of cuts that could establish the diamond's radiance. These are a superficial cut, a cut that is too deep and optimal cut. A shallow cut is a cut of a ruby that is as well low, that light taking a trip with it is lost on the bottom of the stone and does not return into view. This cut makes a ruby show up drab as well as dull. A cut that is unfathomable is a cut that is expensive, that light traveling through it leaves via the sides as well as dims the rock. A perfect cut is an ideal cut on a diamond that mirrors light to the top of the stone, offering it ideal radiance.

* Carat

As specified on the last newsletter, a single carat(ct) considers regarding 200 milligrams or.2 grams. For smaller sized carat rubies that weigh much less than a carat weight, it is shared as points (pt). Points are 1/100 of a carat weight. Carat weight of a diamond is crucial because of the truth that larger diamonds are rarer than smaller sized ones, so primarily the bigger the diamond the extra costly it is. There is no typical grading system or layout that can reveal various carat weight. This is since there are many variations of rubies in form as well as cut, makings stones of comparable weight, look various.

* Replica Diamonds

Since diamonds are the most useful and also rarest of all the gemstones, initiatives have been made to duplicate and even improve diamonds utilizing less costly alternatives. A great deal of times, sincere mistakes have actually been made and these options or various other gemstones such as spinel were sometimes perplexed with real diamonds. In some instances, some deceitful individuals attempt to market these choices to misfortunate customers in order to profit. Below we will certainly review regarding these alternatives and also ways to identify them.

* Artificial Diamonds

Artificial diamonds are rubies that are grown produced in a lab. The very first recognized instances of diamond synthesis were asserted to be documented between 1879 - 1928, yet this was never ever confirmed. It had not been up until the 1940's where study started in the USA, Sweden, Soviet Union began investigating. Synthetic rubies are otherwise called High Stress Heat (HPHT) diamonds or Chemical Vapor Down Payment (CVD) rubies. The name of both these synthetic rubies stems from the procedures used to create them. Several of these artificial diamonds can either have better, minimal or similar features than that of a diamond. As a result, these synthetic diamonds are used for abrasives, reducing and polishing tools, and also changes in power plant.

* Simulants

Simulants are non-diamond compounds that are utilized to duplicate the look or even the form of a ruby. The most fundamental and also popular simulant is cubic zirconia (CZ). CZ at plain view could glimmer greater than a ruby and it is much less thick, meaning that a 1 carat CZ will certainly be a lot larger than a 1 carat diamond. Nowadays, an extra preferred simulant is moissanite, which has just the same characteristics of a diamond. These features consist of hardness (Moissanite-9.25 and also diamond-10 in Mohs range), refractive index(Moissanite -2.65 and ruby -2.42) and also dispersion (Moissanite -.104 and also diamond -.044). This makes it hard to set apart both at ordinary view as well as would commonly require testers to discriminate. In the following section we will certainly go over how to recognize moissanites and various other replicas.

* Genuine or Counterfeit?

An old method of recognizing diamonds is to do a scratch examination. This needs scratching a ruby with an additional ruby which is devastating and is rarely utilized nowadays. The best and most reputable way to evaluate for diamonds is to utilize testers that use thermal conductivity. These testers are composed of battery powered thermistors placed with a retractable copper suggestion. This tester works by infusing the heat into the checked stone as well as after that the tool measures the amount of warm that it conducts. However thermal conductivity testers functions best to differentiate diamonds and also its other simulants, it will not assist differentiate laboratory developed or synthetic stones. To be able to determine these, specific optical methods are required. Laboratories make use of methods such as spectroscopy, microscopy and luminescence in order to determine a particular stones origin. The typical individual can use loupes and also microscopic lens to differentiate synthetic stones. Natural rubies usually have minor blemishes and problems such as incorporations or some sort of foreign product, which will not be located in synthetics.

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Vintage Wedding Rings in Washington

White Diamond Earrings in Dupont

5 Tips on What To Look For When Buying Diamonds For Wedding Rings

A wedding, or an engagement in  Dupont, is one of the most important events in every couple’s life. One of the best ways of making the experience memorable is by choosing the right ring to symbolize the love you have for one another. While most couples would like to get the most beautiful ring they can lay their hands on, budgetary restrictions can be a challenge. However, it is possible to find an ideal ring based on your budget.

For anyone looking for precious diamonds for engagement rings and wedding rings in Dupont, they should consider going about the process carefully. There are various dealers in the market, some of who may sell you fake diamonds. Here are a few useful tips on what to look for when looking for precious diamonds for engagement or wedding rings.

Consider the Diamond Cut

1. Any expert will tell you that the cut is the most important thing to consider when buying diamonds in Dupont. The main reason behind this is that the cut usually influences the sparkle. A diamond may be clear and feature a high quality color grade, but if the cut is poor, it may still appear dull. The dealer you buy from should be able to cut your diamond in the proper proportions. If your budget can allow it, choose a diamond with the highest cut grade.

Diamond Color

2.  Contrary to common belief, lack of color in your diamonds denotes a higher color grade. Some people go for pale yellow diamond, without knowing that it is low quality. To avoid such an experience, ask the diamond dealer to give you grade H or higher. Near colorless diamond ranges from grade G to J, but it may be quite expensive.

Clarity Diamonds can also be chosen based on their clarity levels.

3. This is usually not a very important factor to consider, considering that the precious stones usually come with imperfections, known as inclusions. These tiny imperfections may not be easy to detect, and they may only be seen through a microscope. However, the fewer there are, the higher the clarity grade of your diamonds. If your budget can be stretched further, consider buying grade VS1 grade or higher.

Consider the Diamond’s Carat Weight

4.  Unlike common belief, carat does not mean the size of the diamond, but its actual weight. Carat and cut must be considered side by side, because no matter the size of the diamond, a poor cut grade can make your precious stones look smaller. Another important fact to keep in mind is that the more the weight of the diamond, the more you will pay for it. Therefore, you should consider going for a less heavy stone with a high grade cut.

Ask for Proof of Certification

5. There is nothing as unfortunate as buying diamonds for your special event only to realize that they are of poor quality, or that they were stolen. To avoid such an eventuality, always ask the dealer in Dupont to show you the copy of diamond certification.

With these tips, you should be able to make the right choice when buying precious diamonds in Dupont for you engagement or wedding.

pear diamond solitaire

Dupont How to Buy a Diamond And The 4 Biggest Mistakes When Buying a Diamond

Involvement rings are readily available in a selection of designs, rocks, cuts and shapes. Amongst all the kinds of rocks used in involvement rings, rubies are one of the most priceless and appropriate ones. Their glimmer genuinely has the capacity to win a female's heart. There is a fantastic collection of diamond engagement rings offered out there. Some of the rings are developer productions, which are created as each the consumer's option. They can additionally be called customized ruby involvement rings. A few of the jewelry experts give the customers with the skill of seasoned designers to bring magic to the or else regular features as well as forms.

Designer ruby interaction rings are not just made inning accordance with the choice of client yet also match their budget plan. These rings are cost effective, as contrasted to the other ruby engagement rings. The buyers can choose their own ring setups and match the rubies, to produce an unique item of jewelry for loved ones. The majority of the designer ruby engagement rings are made in white gold, yellow gold and also platinum. Apart from the setups and also diamond option, there are a number of other information that play a vital function in making a ring. Aside from picking a specific style, it is essential for the buyers to maintain in mind the various combinations of designs. The width, density and specific size of the rings are also essential as well as must be considered while creating a ruby interaction ring. Many of these rings take about 6 to 8 weeks to be made.

Developer diamond engagement rings are extremely excellent alternatives, contrasted to the readymade rings quickly readily available. These rings offer even more fulfillment to the purchasers and are special, owing to the personal touch. They give the customer to deal with the layout as well as choice of stone and personalize the production.

wedding band sets

What Are Shade Improved Diamonds as well as Are They For You?

Dupont

In an ideal world with unlimited budgets and an infinite supply of diamonds, everyone would have beautifully cut "D Flawless" diamonds. In the real world every diamond is unique. There are plenty of gorgeous diamonds to go around - you just need to know how to find one. Choosing a diamond is about balancing several factors to make the most of your budget. Each factor contributes to the beauty and prestige of your diamond. I will explain these factors so you will be prepared to make an informed decision about your diamond purchase.

FACTOR 1: CARAT WEIGHT

People often use the word Carat when discussing how big a diamond is, however "Carat" actually refers to the weight of a diamond. There is no rule as to what carat weight you should buy, but you'll doubtless have heard that "bigger is better." If you ask me, I think bigger is great but you shouldn't forget about the other aspects of a diamond's quality.

A useful tip: if you're looking at Certified Diamonds, you may find it valuable to compare the diameters of different diamonds. Since every diamond is individually cut, some may appear larger than others of the same weight.

FACTOR 2: SHAPE

Approximately 75% of diamonds sold worldwide are Round Brilliants. Rounds diamonds are the most popular, most brilliant, and most expensive. If you are purchasing a diamond as a surprise, Round Brilliant is generally your safest bet.

There is no real hierarchy of shapes being better or worse - it is truly a matter of personal preference. Princess Cuts are the second most popular, and a classic alternative to round diamonds. Cushion Cuts are trendy and have a beautiful vintage look. If you want something different but not too crazy, try an Oval Cut, Asscher Cut, or Radiant Cut diamond.

While no shape is better, there are some significant differences between shapes. Take for example, the radiant cut vs the emerald cut. Though they are a similar shape, the extra facets of the radiant cut give it additional fire and sparkle. If you prefer the emerald cut's understated elegance, consider that it's easier to spot any imperfections and select a higher clarity grade.

Another tip: Diamonds (even round diamonds) may not be perfectly symmetrical. It's nothing to worry about if your diamond's width does not precisely match its height, but if your diamond is much longer than it is wide it may not be what you're expecting. This is especially the case in shapes like Cushion and Oval, where a more asymmetrical diamond might look "skinny", with much of the fire and brilliance concentrated at the ends.

FACTOR 3: CUT

"Cut" refers to a diamond's finish and proportions, and is critical in determining its beauty. Getting the angles right ensures a beautiful diamond that's full of life. In many cases it can be more difficult to spot flaws in a fiery, brilliant diamond. Cut is generally graded in five categories: Poor, Fair, Good, Very Good, and Excellent. Excellent is the highest graded awarded by GIA (whereas other labs may use terms like "ideal" or numbers like "0"). If you want to play safe, stick to "Very Good" and "Excellent" cuts when you choose your diamond.

FACTOR 4: CLARITY

Almost all diamonds have naturally¬ occurring features called "inclusions." Inclusions form as the diamond crystallizes deep underground, and they are unique to each diamond. They take many different forms, and can help you identify a diamond as your own. However, large and prominent inclusions can detract from the beauty of a diamond.

There are many different types of inclusions, and not all are created equal. If your diamond certificate has an "inclusion map," check where the inclusions are. Try to find a diamond with inclusions near the edge where they will be masked by sparkle or hidden by the setting of your diamond. If your budget is limited, I recommend buying "SI" clarity or better. "SI" stands for "Slightly Included." With close inspection you can usually spot the inclusions in an SI¬ graded diamond, but these inclusions will most likely not be visible once your diamond is set in jewellery. If you want to be sure your diamond will look "eye clean", even up close, I recommend selecting a VS2 clarity diamond or better. "VS" stands for "Very Slight Inclusion," and imperfections in VS clarity stones are rarely seen by the naked eye.

FACTOR 5: COLOUR

The term "colour" usually refers to how much warm tint is in a diamond. The scale ranges from D (colorless) to Z (very strongly tinted yellow or brown). Pure white diamonds are considered more desirable, and are more expensive. Warmer¬-hued diamonds (such as K, L, and M) are not necessarily less attractive, but they are significantly less valuable.

Conventional wisdom is to select J colour or better. Personally, I love G and H colour diamonds ¬- they hit the "sweet spot" where most people will not notice colour in the diamond unless they're doing a direct comparison. However, an I or J colour diamond that is well cut and has a lot of life can give you a beautiful diamond at a bargain price.

Depending on how they are cut, different diamonds will display colour differently. This is why colour grades are assigned by looking at a diamond upside¬down. Generally, more¬ brilliant diamonds show their colour less than less brilliant diamonds.

FACTOR 6: FLUORESCENCE

Fluorescence has a bad rep, and most of it is unfair. Diamond Fluorescence refers to how a diamond responds when subjected to ultra¬violet light. Fluorescent diamonds can glow any one of several colours, but the most common is blue. In rare cases fluorescence can cause your diamond to have a milky appearance when viewed in direct daylight. This is most often the case with strong or very strong fluorescence and D/E/F colour diamonds.

However, there are many, many more cases where blue fluorescence is a positive thing. Imagine you were shining a blue light on a yellow diamond... the blue tint can make your diamond look whiter. If your diamond falls in the "near colourless," "lightly tinted," or "tinted" range I recommend looking for medium blue or faint blue fluorescence.

Warning: Green, red, and yellow fluorescence are rare, and they will not have the same benefit. If you are interested in a diamond that has strong blue, very strong blue, green, red, or yellow fluorescence, I recommend asking your salesperson to show you your diamond outside in natural daylight. If you're buying online, contact the seller prior to making your purchase so they can examine the diamond first in natural daylight.

FACTOR 7: GRADER

This should always be your first question: Says who? Every diamond grading laboratory has different standards, so comparing diamonds graded by different sources is extremely unreliable. One grader might grade a diamond K SI2, and another might call that same diamond F VS2. I know that sounds crazy, but I see it happen all the time.

The most reputable and consistent grading laboratories are GIA, AGS, IGI, and HRD. GIA is considered the global standard worldwide. AGS is a popular alternative in the U.S.A. while IGI and HRD are more common in Europe.

EGL is tricky because there are EGL labs all over the world, and some of them do a great job while others can be less reliable. We strongly recommend caution when buying an EGL certified diamond unless it's from EGL-¬USA.

Many diamonds are assigned grades by valuation companies and in-¬house graders. If your diamond does not come with a report from a major laboratory, you should always ask where the grader trained. He or she should be certified by a major grading laboratory: GIA, AGS, IGI, or HRD. Be smart and be cautious about reports done by uncertified shop owners, salespeople, or valuation companies.

SELECTING YOUR DIAMOND

You can choose to purchase your diamond online, or from a retail store. If you prefer to purchase your diamond in a retail store, avoid the big chains and shop with smaller independent jewellers. Many independent jewellers are actually significantly less expensive than their large competitors. (You don't have to take my word for it - shop around and you'll quickly learn that this is true). This way you'll buy a better quality diamond and - if you wish - you'll have the opportunity to design your own hand-made engagement ring setting.

If you choose to shop online, I would recommend comparing prices and service across several websites. Be sure that the company ships from your country - otherwise you'll be hit with expensive duty and GST. Always make sure you call or e-mail customer service and have them hand-inspect your diamond before you complete your purchase. Sometimes a diamond may seem like a great deal, but it could have an unfortunate inclusion, asymmetrical cut, or be negatively impacted by fluoresence. And above all, make sure you have an easy and affordable way to return the diamond if it doesn't turn out as you'd hoped. Online shopping is the best way to get a great deal on a diamond for your engagement ring, diamond studs, or pendant - just review this article, be reasonably cautious, and have fun.

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Vintage Wedding Rings in Washington