How I bought my lab grown diamond online
Buying a diamond engagement ring online can be a challenging task for the everyday consumer who doesn't have any background knowledge about diamonds. Fortunately, my hunt for the diamond in the rough was a pleasant experience. I hope that my experience can help improve yours!
When you’re starting your journey in buying a diamond ring, there are some important things to keep in mind. The first thing to consider ended up being the most important thing for me, deciding a budget, sticking to it and getting the best ring possible whilst staying within that budget. I had a budget of $5,000 and wanted to get the best quality possible within that budget, as anyone naturally would. After having a look at my local retail jewellers I soon learned that a natural diamond ring was going to be way above my budget.
I took my search online to see if I could get some better deals, and whilst I certainly could, I was still unsure. I began educating myself and doing extensive research. The most important knowledge you can give yourself about buying diamonds online is to have a firm understanding about the Four C’s. This is an industry term that means cut, colour, clarity, carat. This is knowledge that will help you understand the valuation and quality of a diamond. This information is invaluable because before you even start searching for diamonds you need to know how to determine whether a diamond is of high quality or not.
Basics of the 4Cs
The cut of a diamond is one of the most important diamond characteristics as it provides the diamond with its unique sparkle and brilliance as the cut allows the maximum amount of light to enter and leave the diamond. Of the Four Cs, the cut is the only value factor that is a result of human skill. It refers to the angles and proportion of a diamond, as well as its polish and precision of faceting. Often the cut of a diamond is mistakenly referred to as the shape (round, pear, oval, etc.) of the stone. Well-cut diamonds can reflect light like a mirror from one facet to another and disperse and reflect this light through the top of the stone. A well-cut diamond will be symmetrically round, proper depth and width and have uniformity of the facets. These features will result in optimal radiance. On a classic round brilliant-cut diamond, for example, 57 or 58 facets must be precisely aligned so light will enter the diamond and reflect back through the large top facet, or table of the diamond. Diamonds that are cut either too deep or too shallow can lose light through the sides and bottom and will be less brilliant, and ultimately of less value.
The perfect diamond is actually colourless. The less colour (yellow) a diamond permeates the more rare and valuable it actually is. A letter grade is given to a diamond to describe the subtle tones of colour in the stone. D is perfectly colourless and therefore the most rare and expensive. As you progress from D to Z on the alphabet colour scale, the level of colour increases with traces of a yellowish or brownish colour. A diamond acts like a prism whereby light can be divided into a spectrum of colours. A colourless diamond allows more light to pass through it than a coloured diamond, these colourless diamonds reflect the light as colourful flashes called ‘fire’. The less colour in a diamond the more colourful the fire and hence the better the diamond grade. Colour in a diamond acts as a filter and reduces the range of colour exuded.
Clarity describes the presence or absence of inclusions within the diamond and blemishes on its surface. Diamonds that are crystal clear are the most popular and therefore the most expensive. Many diamonds have natural identifying characteristics sometimes referred to as “inclusions'' such as scratches, trace minerals or other tiny characteristics that can detract from the pure beauty of the diamond. These inclusions are developed in the diamond during its formation and a few are actually a result of the harsh stress that a diamond undergoes during the actual cutting process which is justified when you think of the effort it takes to create a diamond. The fewer inclusions a diamond shows, the rarer and more valuable it is. Many are not detectable by the naked eye, but can be seen under a microscope.
Once you have determined the cut, colour and clarity grade you are requiring from a diamond, it is easy to determine the carat weight that will fit your budget. However it is still one of the most important factors in purchasing a diamond as it determines the size and appearance of your jewellery. The carat is the standard unit of measurement used to weigh, not the size, of a gemstone. There are 100 points to a carat and one carat is equal to 200 milligrams. Therefore a 50 point diamond is 1/2 a carat, or 100 milligrams. Larger diamonds are found relatively infrequently in nature and are therefore more valuable. The cost of a diamond increases exponentially with its weight. Thus the larger the diamond the more expensive per carat. For example 1-carat diamond will cost more than twice a 1/2-carat diamond, all other things considered. However, the cut and mounting can make a diamond appear larger or smaller than it actually is. The term carat is often confused with the term karat. Karat refers to the purity of the gold, not its weight.
Each of the Four C’s impact the value and appearance of a diamond, so learning about them is the next most important step on your journey once you have a budget in mind.
Choosing the right ring for your partner
You want your partner's face to light up with surprise and for the moment of the ring reveal to be an everlasting memory. Choosing the right ring will require you to put on your detective's cap and do some investigative work on your partner. The best thing to do is to look at what jewellery they like to wear. You can do this subtly when they are not around, by rifling through a jewellery box. You should also be paying attention to what jewellery they wear everyday. Do they wear vintage or modern pieces? Are the designs simple or detailed? Do they prefer gold or silver? If you don’t know your partner's ring size, free ring sizing is available online. If you can answer these questions you will find yourself better prepared to make the right choice. If you know what your partner likes but still don’t know what to choose, the information you gain from your investigative work can be passed on to your jeweller and they can help give you recommendations.
Lab grown Diamonds
With my budget and my new found knowledge about diamonds in mind, I turned my focus to Lab grown diamonds which seemed like a promising alternative to natural diamonds. Lab grown diamonds are socially conscious, environmentally friendly and have revolutionised the options and prices in the industry. Lab grown diamonds are an ethically responsible choice because no mining of the earth is required to acquire them. They have the same chemical, physical and optical properties as mined diamonds because of the cutting edge technology used to make them, which replicates the circumstances required to create a diamond. They offer excellent value and are more affordable when compared to the size and quality of natural diamonds. My search online led me to Forever Yours, an Australian company based in Melbourne that sells lab grown diamond rings. Forever Yours gave me amazing customer service, and armed with the information and knowledge I had gained from doing my own research, they were able to answer all of my questions and give me professional advice and provide me with options so I was able to get what I was looking for. I was able to make a custom ring within budget and had guidance from the start of the process until the end.
Research online retailers
There are hundreds of jewellery retailers, both in-store and online. When diamond hunting online, you shouldn’t simply pick the first one you come across. It’s important to find a jeweller that offers warranty, has a decent return policy, insures your product during delivery and has a diamond certification. Forever Yours has free platinum shipping, hassle free 30 day returns, lifetime diamond warranty and diamond certifications. If you’re on a tight budget like me, choosing a diamond from a jeweller that provides these services will give you peace of mind.
Buying an engagement ring can seem like a daunting and stressful experience. But with a little research and preparation on your behalf, and by choosing the right jeweller, it can be a very enjoyable and memorable experience. I hope this advice helps you on your journey in finding the perfect engagement ring for your partner, so that you can focus the rest of your time and energy into planning your special moment and the perfect proposal!