(Closed) Eeps! We are going to look at loose diamonds this week! Any advice bees??

posted 5 years ago in Rings
Post # 3
3101 posts
Sugar bee

@littlekay111:  Here’s a pic for everyone to enjoy.  Do you know what quality you want?  The C’s?

Post # 4
2664 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2015 - Ketchum, ID

@littlekay111:  The naked eye can’t tell the difference between a D and an F color, and you can drop all the way down to around an G/H before you even really notice anything. When they grade diamond colors, they do it with the diamond upside down… However, once it’s right side up and in a setting, you can hardly tell the difference between various grades. Also, you don’t need an internally flawless diamond. A VS1 is perfectly fine, as long as it is eye clean. Many impurities in diamonds are not visible with the naked eye. You can save literally thousands of dollars by not buying into the whole “you need a colorless and internally flawless diamond” scheme (this is coming from a person who loves diamonds lol). Knock the color and clarity down (again, you won’t be able to tell the difference), but do not skimp on the cut. That’s the most important C of the 4. Make sure it’s a high cut, that’s what will give you the brilliance and the sparkle. Also, various carat sizes might face up differently, depending on the shape/cut, so just place the stone on your finger to see how much coverage it gives. 

Post # 5
4713 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: January 1998

How exciting!!! If you can bring your setting with you so you can see it in the setting. You will want to make sure that the settings diamonds are not clashing with the loose stone and the other way around. The colour diff between the two can be distracting if you are colour sensitive!!!

Post # 6
296 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

Get what looks good to your eye.  You dont wear the GIA or EGL certificate.  Have them show you the diamond before they tell you what the rating is.  Then your decision is based on what diamond you are drawn to.  -Not what they say means “the Best.”  Best/higher grading means more money not necessarly a diamond you will like more.  

Post # 8
9954 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2012


Good advice from the others.

Mr TTR’s & my priority was… CUT (Shape & Quality) – COLOUR – CLARITY – CARAT (somewhere between 0.50 and 1.00)


We ended up with a Feature Diamond that is 0.80 C – Good Cut Round Brilliant – F Colour – SI-1 Clarity – GIA CERTIFIED – CANADIAN

Not cheap… but it is a fabulous diamond… it glitters like all get out (I attribute that to CUT & COLOUR)

As you’ve noted if you stay under 1.0 you’ll do better than aiming for dead-on (odd sizing is cheaper… so don’t automatically elminate looking at a few points over 1.0 as well)

As well be aware that although Diamonds are referred to as points, percentages… they also can be listed by fractions.

A 3/4 Carat Diamond found in the range between 0.69 and 0.82

A 7/8 Carat Diamond between 0.83 and 0.94

and a 1 Carat Diamond between 0.95 and 1.05

You can find a wealth of info on the Blue Nile Website’s Diamond Education Pages… an excellent read




Post # 9
1980 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: March 2014

I really agree with what the PP’s have said about certificates not mattering that much. IMO, choose the diamond you love the best without knowing it’s stats. Then check stats to make sure you can live with it. My diamond is an H/SI1, and it is spectacular. I saw VS1’s that weren’t a vibrant and sparkly as my diamond was. 

Post # 11
162 posts
Blushing bee

@littlekay111:  I agree with the others who say ‘trust your eyes’ and that you don’t wear the certification, but only up to a certain point. The average consumer hasn’t seen an ideal cut diamond before, so they don’t know if the ones they are being shown are the best cut they can get. There’s where a reliable certification comes in handy (I recommend only considering AGS/GIA certified diamonds), they provide a standard to base your decision on. 

If you want something to think about (and have some time), watch this video in HD to see how super-ideal cut diamonds are supposed to look. He compares stones of different cut GIA cut qualities. It’s even more interesting if you listen to it with the sound off at first. Many people will think the first two diamonds he shows are pretty sparkly and well cut, even though in reality its a low cut quality.


Some tips I can think of…

1) If buying uncertified or certified from a lab like EGL/IGI/etc, ask the jeweler to provide an ideal cut GIA/AGS stone as a benchmark (a Hearts on Fire diamond can work too, they are generally very well cut – but with a premium price). An ideal cut rating from the other labs like EGL/IGI can mean anything.

2) You’ll notice some EGL certifications specifically say the diamond is certified conflict free. Many jewelers are baffled by this, since unless an EGL employee follows that specific diamond through the mining/cutting process personally, there’s no real way to guarantee it is conflict free. Don’t let this sway your decision into buying one, it doesn’t mean anything.

3) If graded by GIA/AGS, most VS2, many SI1, and few SI2 stones are eye clean.

4) Depending on your color sensitivity, an H color diamond is plenty white. It’s generally recommended on staying between 2 color grades of your side stone color.

5) A GIA Very Good cut isn’t very good at all, don’t be fooled by the wording. See the video above for proof. 

6) Jewelers consider fluorescence a bad thing, and they’ll tell you it causes stones to appear milky. A GIA study concluded that a negative effect only appeared in 0.2% of the fluorescent diamonds they received. It actually helps the diamond appear whiter in light that has UV, like direct sunlight. Read about it here

7) Just because a stone is a ‘hearts and arrows’ diamond, doesn’t automatically make it the best diamond. There’s no standard to what is called a hearts and arrows diamond.

8) Like PPs have said, do not compromise on cut. Period. If the jeweler brings out a stone, it’s the first thing you should ask for. A ideal cut I SI1 will beat out a Very Good cut D IF diamond each and every time.

9) Be careful, do your research, but don’t forget to enjoy yourself! The process is a great experience to go through, and you’re lucky to be doing it with your Fiance (many girls don’t have that chance!)

Post # 12
107 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: November 2014

I think PP have covered all the 4Cs. The only thing I have to add is about the overall experience. If you’re doing your shopping at a brick-and-mortar shop, be prepared to visit lots of different stores or make multiple trips, because they tend to carry a far smaller selection than online stores.

For example, after taking a “diamond class,” my Fi and I narrowed down our choices to: GIA or AGL certified/0.70+ ct/EX to VG cut/E-G/VS1-SI2. The first store we went to only have 1 loose stone in stock that was within our budget, so we ended up going to 4 other stores before we finally decided on one. I think the largest store had at most 5 stones to show us. Each one of them offered to “bring in more” for us to look at, but it was kinda annoying that they didn’t do that in the first place when we first set the appt., but I digress.

Anyway, good luck with your search and I hope you and your SO have a fun, stress-free experience!

Post # 13
1460 posts
Bumble bee

I’d say look at the stones in every lighting! Display lighting, the diamon room lighting, go outside, hell even try the bathroom! I didn’t and I’m so nervous my stone is going to look different or off outside of the jeweler’s! Good luck!

Post # 15
479 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

Everyone has given awesome advice.  Make sure you look at scales,online. You want to have a balance between color and clarity that will fall within your budget.

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