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How Genuine is Your Diamond?

When shopping for a diamond, you may come across some retailers offering "clarity-enhanced" diamonds. Such retailers may claim that purchasing an 'enhanced' diamond is a great way save money, but this is not the whole story. While the clarity 'enhancement' is meant to hide flaws and/or enhance color, it is not a substitute for a genuine diamond.

Laser Drilling

A laser can be used to drill a hole in a diamond to inject it with acid to help dissolve or bleach out inclusions. The particles are flushed out of the hole but the diamond is left with a drilled shaft. Drilled holes are often filled to cover the appearance, but they are sometimes left open and remain visible with proper magnification.

Fracture Filling

Another diamond 'enhancement' method is to fill surface fractures with a glass-like material. It is possible to take a diamond that has been classified as an I1 (imperfect) diamond and make it look like an SI2 (slightly included). As clarity is a large contributor a diamond's value, clarity 'enhancement' can allow a consumer to purchase a diamond that has the initial appearance of being far more valuable than it actually is.

Color Enhancement

Diamonds are also treated with the 'enhancement' process for colored diamonds. The problem that can arise with the subjection of a diamond to color 'enhancement' is that the diamond is being placed under conditions that formed it slowly and organically over millions of years, but all within an artificially short time period. This stress can cause a diamond to lose its structural integrity, thus putting it at great risk for damage. Any color 'enhancement' should be noted during the diamond's sale.

How to Know You are Getting a Genuine Diamond

Diamond modification is sold as a great innovation, but the bottom line is that a treated diamond is no longer a genuine diamond. Thus, it is important to seek out online diamond jewelers, such as, who do not partake in the 'enhanced' diamond market. Many online jewelers offer savings through diamonds that are not or cannot be certified, due to their 'enhancement'. However, 'enhanced' diamonds do not retain their value, thus negating any real savings. Abazias is an online jeweler that offers its clients only certified diamonds, free of any 'enhancements'.

Most reputable jewelers will stay away from any kind of clarity or color 'enhancement' and don't consider diamonds that have undergone such 'enhancement' processes to be genuine. When in doubt, simply ask the vendor or jeweler for the certification or paper work on the diamond. By law, they are required to tell you about the product that you wish to purchase.