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18 Feb

Buying Diamonds on the Internet?

Posted by Amy Certilman in diamond buying, internet diamond buying

Attention Internet Shoppers!

Recently I worked with a client buying a 1.5ct engagement ring. While we were looking at stones he told me he had seen a diamond ring on Costco's website that seemed similar to what he wanted. 

For the record - I am a huge fan of Costco. The Kirkland brand is exceptional. So we logged on to see what was what and I'm glad we did. Yes, Costco and Blue Nile sell GIA Certified Diamonds. But as I tell my kids, "Don't judge a book by it's cover" and, "Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should".

Listen, I get it. The on-line industry and many local retailers sell certified diamonds and want to you think that all diamonds of a certain grade are the same. Well they’re not. Just like us, each diamond has it’s own DNA and no two are exactly alike. Think of identical twins – at first glance you can’t tell them apart. But the more you look – the more you get to know them- you can easily see different characteristics that at times make them seem completely different. 

To a trained eye the same goes for diamonds. Each diamond “rough” is unique. And depending upon the stonecutter, two diamonds from the same rough can be cut to look completely different – even when cut to the same shape.

Why is that?

Think Giorgio Armani vs The Gap.  They could be using the same fabric yet the end product will look totally different because the tailor's skill level and process is not comparable -which is why you pay more for designer clothing

My clients know that I love to talk about diamonds. Not just the glitz and glitter but the unique elements that make each diamond such a gift from nature.

So you may be thinking... "Amy, are you saying not to buy diamonds on the internet?" No, I'm not. And as a disclaimer I should add that I sell diamonds via my website all the time.

While Costco and Blue Nile are reputable retailers and will sell you what they say, as a small business owner I personally

 work with my clients and only sell diamonds that I have hand-picked myself to suit their budget and style. 

If you've ever seen a poorly cut diamond you will know what I'm talking about and how important Cut is to the finished product- not just in the beauty of the stone - but to the value of it as well. Additionally, when one compares diamonds from a "list" on the internet, while on paper the specifications are the same, in person they may look quite different. This is due to the fact that even though a diamond has an "excellent" rating, the rating is a "range" and the stones in person will look different. 

To make this point - Both stones in the photo here are rated as GIA Excellent. But I bet you would choose the H SI1 diamond in the photo above over the G SI 1 stone if you were not told the specifications - and would have a prettier ring.

As a jewelry professional and diamond lover I truly believe it is important to fall in love with a stone. Much like how you need to actually read a book to form an opinion, when spending thousands of dollars buying a diamond I recommend personally comparing several stones or hire a professional who will.