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The Smart Way to Buy Diamonds

Buying diamond jewelry is a big investment. You want to make sure you get the best value for your money. If you make the right choice, diamond jewelry will last a lifetime and will also be enjoyed by the next generation. So how do you make sure that you are choosing a piece you’ll enjoy for decades without spending too much? Fear not! We’ll walk you through the smart way to buy diamond jewelry. This cheat sheet will have you buying like a seasoned pro in no time. And we’ve got links to blog posts with more detailed diamond education if you want to dive in deeper and learn more.


Shopping for diamond jewelry online

Tip 1: Save Money by Shopping Online

Does the idea of walking into a fancy jewelry store make you feel a little intimidated? While it’s fun to play dress-up at Tiffany’s, today you have a lot more affordable options that are more low-key. Shopping online for diamonds has a lot of benefits. You can explore a wide range of designs and diamond qualities and compare prices from the comfort of your couch. Online retailers often have lower overhead costs, allowing them to offer very competitive prices. You can see how the price changes when you select different size and quality center diamonds too. Plus the best online retailers also have online education to help you learn about diamonds at your own pace without a hovering salesperson. Read our blog post to learn more about the advantages of buying diamonds online vs instore.

Lab grown diamond stud earrings

Tip 2: Try Lab Grown Diamonds

When it comes to diamond jewelry, you've got options, including an exciting new one. Mined diamonds from deep underground are the traditional choice. But don't sleep on lab created diamonds: they're gorgeous and surprisingly kind to you budget. Lab created diamonds are identical in appearance to mined diamonds. These diamonds are grown in a controlled environment using advanced technology, producing high-quality stones that are chemically and optically indistinguishable from natural diamonds. The only differences are the origin and the price tag. Lab grown diamonds are much more affordable than mined gems and also don’t require operating large open pit mines in remote pristine parts of the world. Consider this option to get more value for your money, especially if you’re looking for the perfect engagement ring! You can get a nice two carat lab grown diamond engagement ring and use the savings for a dream honeymoon to Bora Bora! Read our blog post to learn more about lab grown diamonds vs natural diamonds.

Diamonds on a hand

Tip 3: Know Your 4Cs

The key to shopping for diamond jewelry is to compare apples to apples. Good online jewelers will explain the quality of the diamonds they offer so you can know exactly what you are buying. The 4Cs refer to the quality of a diamond’s cut, color, clarity, and carat weight. Cut determines how well light bounces around to make that diamond dazzle. Focus on an excellent or ideal cut grade so your diamond sparkles to the max. Color refers to the white tone: the less color, the better. But don't obsess over a faint hue - your eyes can't see it! An H or G color looks gorgeous and saves you cash. Clarity means inclusions: it’s graded under 10X magnification so you won’t be able to see the inclusions in an SI diamond with your naked eye. And carat weight is size. Remember, a one carat diamond costs way more than two half carat diamonds of the same quality.

Understanding the 4Cs of diamond quality helps you choose where to scrimp and where to splurge. For example, if you are choosing a yellow gold design, you might decide to choose a less expensive warmer toned white diamond that will still look white in the setting in order to trade up in carat size. Don’t get too obsessed with scrutinizing micro photos of diamonds, which are magnified a hundred times or more: your eye won’t be able to see a tiny speck in a diamond a few millimeters across. Most gemologists recommend a F-G-H color diamond and an SI clarity to make sure your diamond looks colorless with no eye-visible inclusions. Read our blog post to learn more about the 4Cs of diamond quality.


Evaluating diamond cut

Tip 4: Don’t Compromise on Cut

While all the 4Cs are important, the cut of a diamond is particularly significant. The cut determines how well the diamond reflects light, resulting in its brilliance and sparkle. Cut determines just how dazzling your diamond will be. We're talking maximizing sparkle, brilliance, and fire. Even if you get a big, flawless diamond, a bad cut will leave it looking lifeless. Even with excellent color and clarity, a poorly cut diamond may appear dull. Prioritize a good cut grade to ensure your diamond jewelry shines brilliantly. Cut is KEY to a showstopping diamond, so refuse to compromise here even if you must scrimp elsewhere. In fact, we think it's so important that at Brilliant Carbon we don't sell any diamonds with poor or merely good cuts. All our lab grown diamond jewelry has the brilliance of excellent proportions. Read our blog post to learn more about diamond cut and the other diamond quality factors.


Diamonds in different shapes

Tip 5: Get Fancy

Had enough of basic round brilliant diamonds? Make your diamond jewelry pop by falling in love with a fancy diamond shape like princess, oval, pear or emerald cut. Their intriguing shapes provide serious style at less cost than classic rounds. That’s because traditional round diamonds cost more per carat than these fancy shapes. And because they are cut shallower than rounds, fancy shaped diamonds look larger than round diamonds the same weight, especially elongated cuts like oval shapes and pear cuts. They have a larger surface area so are bigger face up that round diamonds the same carat size. Don’t shy away from exploring different diamond shapes to find the perfect fit for your style and budget. Read more for help finding the right diamond shape for you.


Rings in different colors of gold

Tip 6: Color Your Gold

Don't forget about choosing the perfect precious metal setting to display your diamond! Gold colors include romantic rose, classic yellow, and sleek white.
Yellow gold is a timeless choice for engagement rings. Its warm and radiant hue has been a symbol of luxury and devotion for centuries. Why Choose Yellow Gold? It’s a classic choice with a long tradition, perfect for those who appreciate timeless elegance. The warm golden glow complements a wide range of skin tones, making it universally flattering. For a contemporary twist on the classic yellow gold, white gold is an excellent choice. White gold is sleek and sophisticated, perfect for a minimalist icy white look for your jewelry piece. White gold is an alloy of gold and other white metals, often plated with rhodium for a bright, shiny finish. Over the years, your jewelry piece may need to be replated with rhodium if it is scratched or worn. Rose gold is romantic and charming. Created by blending gold with copper, it boasts a beautiful pinkish hue that stands out from the crowd. Its warm undertones add a touch of romance and femininity that complements vintage-inspired or bohemian designs. The same design can have a different personality in a different color of gold. Learn more on choosing the right gold color for you.

Certified lab grown diamond

Tip 7: Get the Quality in Writing

Before you buy any diamond, make sure it comes with certification from a respected organization like International Gemological Institute or the Gemological Institute of America. A certified diamond gives you confidence in your purchase. At Brilliant Carbon, every lab grown diamond of a half-carat or more comes with an IGI grading report. We think you should be confident of the quality of your lab-grown diamond solitaire necklace or lab grown diamond stud earrings too, not just your lab grown engagement ring. One of the best things about choosing lab grown diamonds is that you don’t have to sacrifice quality to afford diamonds that are truly dazzling in every way. Learn more about How to Read an IGI Grading Report.

Ready, Set, Shop Smarter

Now you are ready to shop for beautiful diamond jewelry that’s a great value too. Still have questions? We’d love to help. Contact us for personal advice on finding or creating the diamond jewelry of your dreams. And subscribe to our newsletter using the tab on the left of this page for more lab grown diamond buying tips, dazzling new designs, access to secret sales and 10% off your first purchase.