A diamond is forever—unless it’s fake, of course. Unfortunately many of the fake diamonds are so well made that it can fool even experienced gemologists. We don’t even have the benefits of special tools!
So how do you know if the diamond you are buying is fake or real? The most important thing to do is to buy from a trusted jeweler recommended by family or friends, or from an established jewelry store. But here a few things that can help you know if you have the real thing.
Don’t judge a diamond by its sparkle
A real diamond will always be brilliant and sparkle. But since the creation of moissanites, which are man-made diamonds, even an experienced jeweler will not readily be able to tell the difference between the two as the former will pass even a diamond tester.
The only way to tell the difference is by looking through a lens and shine a light through the stone. A moissanite will have a ‘kaleidoscope of colors’ while a diamond will have specks of white. Fortunately, moissanites are usually sold by specially-accredited jewelers who do not brand them anything but that. Moissanites are a third of the price of real diamonds, so these can be expensive as well.
A cubic zirconia ‘looks like plastic’ will not pass a diamond tester. Since it is softer than diamond, it will also scratch when rubbed against a real diamond.
Can it scratch glass?
To tell whether it’s glass or a real diamond, use the stone in question to cut glass. If it easily gouges or leaves a groove in the glass, then it is diamond. If it doesn’t, it’s glass.
Check the glow
Bring the diamond to a jeweler and ask him to shine a long-wave ultraviolet light (or black light) through the stone. A diamond glows blue, cubic zirconia mustard yellow, while glass will not glow at all.
Check the setting too
When you’re buying jewelry don’t just check the diamond, you may also be duped into buying fake gold. Gold jewelry, especially those purchased abroad like in Italy, U.S., the Middle East, Japan, will always be stamped with the karat (e.g. 18K or kt).
White gold can easily be confused with sterling silver or platinum. In terms of price, sterling silver jewelry will be less expensive and stamped with ‘.925’, to show that it is composed of .925 silver and .75 another metal. It is also softer than gold or platinum. Platinum is rarer than gold and will cost more than gold jewelry. It is denser and whiter, and often weighs more heavily than gold. Because it is rare, platinum is often used to just make rings.
When in doubt, it helps to have a friend who knows her jewelry to guide you in spotting the fakes from the real stuff. And, for very expensive stones, you may want to ask for a diamond certificate from an independent laboratory.
Photo from ladiamondguy.com