Of love and other diamonds


Bright, brilliant and blinding sparkles are just some of the qualities of a diamond that make women crazy.

For the ladies, it is the ultimate symbol of romantic love. The diamond’s rarity, value and how it delicately reflects light, while being the hardest of all minerals have inspired women from all over the world.

Anyone would love to receive a diamond ring on Valentine’s Day or her birthday. But for engagements, it goes without saying, that it should be a diamond that must seal the deal.

Trying to explain a woman’s love and lust for diamonds is like entering a labyrinth. More so, try to explain it to a man, whose biggest fear in life is buying a seemingly small stone, that’s going to burn a huge hole in his pocket.

So to all the men who are ready to pop the question, here are a few tips for you: courtesy of http://tinyurl.com/yc2r56o

Q: What’s the difference between a cubic zirconia and a diamond?

A cubic zirconia (CZ) is a man-made crystal with a different refractive index (the degree to which a substance can bend and impact light, making the substance look more or less brilliant) than a diamond. CZ is not as durable as a diamond. It also weighs 60% more, so if she likes to trade rings with her friends to compare, you could get busted.

Q: Which of the 4 Cs (cut, clarity, color, and carat) is the most important characteristic to consider when buying a diamond?

The most important characteristic is cut. The cut is the quality of a diamond’s proportions, described in angles and percentages. It is not merely how symmetric the diamond is, as described by the “symmetry” grade on the lab report, as you may be told. Cut has the most impact on a diamond’s overall beauty. Many consumers are kept in the dark about the finer details of cut.

After cut, our money is on clarity, then color — because great cut quality can make a stone appear more colorless. As for carat weight, we all want size (and so do our women), but given a choice, the stone with the best cut quality wins.

Q: What type of information and documentation should I demand when purchasing a diamond?

You should insist on knowing these details of the cut: Table %, Depth %, Crown angle, and Pavilion angle (see diagram below). These measurements will allow evaluation of a diamond’s cut quality.

Independent laboratory certification is a must. We feel very strongly about this. It is a pedigree of quality that should come with the diamond.

Q: Is it true that the price of a diamond increases exponentially as its carats increase, especially as it gets close to 1?

Prices fluctuate, but the short answer is yes. The dramatic increase is because larger pieces of a rough diamond are needed to produce larger sized diamonds. These pieces of rough cost more. The good news is that prices you’ve seen in the “real world” are inflated. In this day and age, you can get a higher quality diamond for similar or better prices from a reputable Internet vendor.

Q: What is an “A Cut Above” Hearts & Arrows diamond?

Hearts & Arrows is a term used for a round, brilliant diamond that exhibits a kaleidoscopic pattern of hearts in the pavilion (bottom) and arrows in the crown (top) due to the precision in its cut. These diamonds are considered the best-cut diamonds in the world.

To earn the “A Cut Above” (ACA) brand name, the stone must have the planet’s highest cut grade of AGS 0 “Ideal.” Further, the physical alignment of each facet must be perfect. Less than one in three million diamonds displays Hearts & Arrows, and only a fraction are good enough to be branded “A Cut Above.”

Because of the very specific proportions, each ACA has a harmonious blend of white light, colored flashes and sizzling scintillation. Expressly dynamic in all lighting conditions, this marriage of crisp brilliance and robust fire makes “A Cut Above” the most visually balanced diamonds in the world.

Q: What’s the most popular metal used when creating a diamond ring?

These days, it’s platinum, which we recommend for its durability. Gold is always in fashion, too.

Q: What’s a reasonable budget for buying a diamond? Is it really three months’ salary as advertised by some?

The short answer is to buy what you can afford.

Finding the perfect diamond is personal. The traditional figure is three months’ salary, but who’s to say that’s right for your circumstances? We are guessing that if she’s ready for you to pop the question, she wants it to be popped soon. Don’t wait needlessly. No budget is too small or too large, but you should look for the best value in craftsmanship and performance for your money, whether it’s a 15 pointer for $150 or a 7-carat Superideal True Hearts & Arrows cut for $250,000.

How to insure your diamond and avoid getting hustled…

Q: Do diamonds have a resale value once they’ve been cut and purchased?

Only at a slight percentage over wholesale cost. Your best security is to make sure the vendor has sound return, trade-up and/or buyback policies.

Q: How should I care for the diamond?

Diamond is one of the hardest known substances, so just keep it clean and degreased. Dish soap, warm water and a soft brush do the trick. The setting may require more delicate care.

Q: Is there a foolproof way to avoid getting hustled when buying a diamond?

Be smart. Follow these four key words: education, information, communication, and reputation.