How To Determine a Real Diamond: A Diamond Guide

Learn to Identify Real and Fake Diamonds


Are you shopping for a diamond? Maybe you’re trying to find out if the gift you received was a real diamond or a zirconium? Whatever your reason, identifying whether you are holding a girl’s best friend or just a pretty paste is often important to a girl. Follow these steps and you will be able to learn how to tell if a diamond is real.

  1. Decide what tests you can use. There are several tests to determine if a diamond is real or not. Deciding between tests may be as simple as whether you already own the diamond or if you are in a jewelers looking at a piece, whether loose or a diamond in a setting. Loose stones are easier to do diamond testing on but you don’t want to alarm the retailer so be subtle. For loose stones, go to step two, and for diamonds already in a setting go to step three.
  2. Place the loose diamond onto a sheet of newsprint or the page of a book. Place the stone directly over some text then look at the diamond. Can you see any lines from the text? Is the text magnified in the stone? If your answer is yes, you are not looking at a real diamond. You see, diamonds refract light and cannot be used as a magnifier. This is one of the first and easiest ways of detecting fake diamonds.
  3. Try the light test. Using a small bright light from a penlight or other focused light source, shine the light into the diamond. Try to shine the light through the stone. If you can see through to the other side, you are not looking at a diamond. With a diamond you should see a halo around the stone.
  4. Check the setting. There are a few things to check when it comes to setting. First, most diamonds are set in an open back setting because the diamond refracts light better in an open setting. Second, check the type of metal used in the setting. You can identify real diamonds because they are going to be set in better metals -- not inferior ones like 10kt gold.
  5. Get a certification. Once you are fairly certain that the diamond is real, ask for its certification. GIA (Gemological Institute of America) certifies diamonds. If a purchased diamond didn’t come with a certification or only came with a certification from the jewelry retailer, there is some cause for concern and you should get a better opinion. Certified diamonds are the best way to ensure the diamond is real.

Now you know how to determine a real diamond. However, checking to tell if a diamond is real requires a few steps but you can never be sure without a certification from an expert. Know the points of this diamond guide and listen to your instincts when shopping for a diamond, if you aren’t sure you can trust the jeweler or if the deal seems too good to be true, walk away. Don’t take a risk and end up with a fake.


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