Getting what you pay for

Just like going to the doctor or getting your car tuned up – you have to trust that you are getting what you thought you paid for.  Buying a diamond is no different and some jewelers don’t even know what they’re selling to you.

When gemological laboratories grade a diamond, they give their opinion of the four C’s (cut, color, clarity, cut,) based on their standard. But all standards are not equal. They may use the same letter grades but that does not mean they use the same standard. This allows for diamonds with lower grades to appear to be of higher quality than what they really are.

Is this easy for a diamond lab to do? Not when they are graded in America, but overseas-graded diamonds can legally be sold in the US. Overseas diamond labs are for-profit while US diamond labs are non-profit.  The combination of the Federal Trade Commission and the Jewelers Vigilance Committee have made our American labs the highest and most honest standard for diamond grading in the entire world.

So why would foreign-graded diamonds be circulating in the USA? You can probably take a couple of good guesses.  Legally speaking, as long as jeweler informs the customer of the discrepancies of a foreign graded diamond, the practice is legal.

The buyer beware concern is not that you’re getting what you paid for, because you will pay less for a diamond when compared to a seemly equal quality American graded diamond.  It’s that the diamond just isn’t what you may have thought it to be. Putting it frankly, it’s not a “deal” of a price.

At Windsor, we have on staff GIA (Gemological Institute of America) and AGS (American Gem Society) certified gemologists and we don’t carry overseas graded diamonds. We also carry EGL USA which divided with its international counter part, here’s story on that separation.

Here’s a quick clip from San Diego News Team 10 that did a story on this issue.