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How to Tell if a Diamond is Real

While buying a diamond ring how do you tell if a diamond is real? Here are a few tests that you can conduct to ensure that you are not being duped into buying an imitation diamond.
Who can tell you if a diamond is fake or real? While the best way to certify the authenticity of a diamond is to consult a gemologist, it costs good money to do so. And sometimes when you discover a stone while window shopping which captures your attentions, you do not have the time to consult an expert. What do you do then? How do you tell if a diamond is real? There are some very simple tests that can help you ensure that the diamond you are picking out is definitely real, and not glass or cubic zirconium.

Testing for Real Diamonds

When you enter a shop and pick out the diamond jewelry you want to buy, then the first thing you should do is ask the jeweler for the certificate. The certificate should be from a well-known diamond grading authority like GIA, AGSL, PGGL, etc. In case the certificate is from an individual appraiser, then ask to confirm whether or not he is credited by an organization like the American Society of Appraisers. Most appraisers use a standardized diamond grading system to tell if a diamond is real or fake.

Remember that even if you receive a certificate from the jeweler, the test is not over. Conduct other tests for confirmation. One of the most common and easiest tests is to check for the refractive properties. Diamonds have a high refractive index and therefore they sparkle a lot when light passes through them. This is because the refractive index of diamonds causes light to bend sharply. So how do you tell if a diamond is real by using this property? Simple, if you are buying a loose diamond, place it upside down on a newspaper. If you can read the print or even see black, then the diamond is probably fake. If it is a mounted diamond, then look at directly from the top. If you can see the bottom, it is a fake diamond.

Unlike popular belief, a diamond does not have rainbow reflections but a reflection that seem gray in color. Keep this in mind while buying a diamond. Another good test to conduct that is solution to the problem, how do you tell if a diamond is real, is to check it under a microscope. If there is an orange flash to the different facets of the stone, then it is probably a fake. How do you know if the diamond you have is fake or real, is a question that can be answered with all certainty if you check it with a diamond tester that you can easily buy from the market. Also you can check the diamond under UV light. Diamonds showcase blue fluorescence under UV light so if you see this color then rest assured that the diamond is real.

Heating it is another way of ensuring whether or not the diamond is real. A real stone will not heat up quickly as diamonds disperse heat. This test has no harmful affects on the diamond. If you have the time then you can also opt to have the diamond x-rayed as diamonds do not show up in x-rays. To find out if a diamond is real or it is a synthetic diamond, one thing you can do is check the setting. Diamonds usually will have precious metals as a setting. This is not a hundred percent proof but it is an indicator.

It is important that once you have conducted all the tests to determine the authenticity of a diamond, you get it registered. This will ensure that you are sure that you have a real stone and the dilemma of real diamonds vs fake diamonds will be definitely vanquished. If you are having a problem choosing between synthetic diamonds and real diamonds, then think about it this way. Buying a synthetic diamond will ensure that you have a stone with all the chemical and physical characteristics of a real diamond and you will be able to buy it at a fraction of the cost. Of course that is just an option. How do you tell if a diamond is real; it is a problem that has very simple tests to get the answer you are looking for.
By Tulika Nair
Published: 9/23/2010
Bouquets and Brickbats
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