CHEAP DIAMONDS - How to spot a fake and save your money

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This guide is aimed at all you bargain seekers out there looking for the perfect diamond for the perfect occasion - The last thing you want to do is spend all of that hard earned cash only to find that you have been a victaim of Fraud - Hope this helps!
1.   Ask
...if the stone is a genuine diamond or if it is a cubic zirconia, or other synthetic substance. A reputable jeweler or honest ebayer will give you an honest answer. And Keep the email - if it turns out to be a fake in the future - you will have proof that you were told otherwise!  
2.   Look the setting and mount. Stones such as cubic zirconia are so much cheaper than diamonds that they are usually set in inferior metals.  
3.   Check
...the wear and tear on the stone. A cubic zirconia is not as durable as a diamond and may show signs of scratches or nicks, where the diamond is one of the hardest substances known to man so it should look like that!  
4.   Get Advice taking the stone to a trusted jeweler. By looking through a jeweler's loupe they should be able to spot a fake stone right away. If the jeweler cannot tell by examining the stone, they should have the instruments needed to verify its authenticity.  
5.   Obtain
...a certificate from the GIA - Gemological Institute of America. The GIA is the largest diamond grading authority in the world and issues a grading report after it examines the diamond and details it specifications for you in a certificate you can keep with the diamond for insurance / resale purposes 
6.   Appraise
...Your Stone by an independent appraiser who is affiliated with a professional organization such as the ASA - American Society of Appraisers. Ask for a certificate indicating the value and characteristics of the stone.  

Be warned- If a cubic zirconia is mounted in a high-quality mount made of 18k gold or platinum, you are not likely to be able to spot the fake diamond unless you get the advice of an expert.
 Recently, some of the best imitation diamonds are made of moissanite. This substance, which didn't come on the market until 1998, so closely resembles a diamond that even experts have a hard time telling the two stones apart without a special instrument. Moissanite sells for about one-tenth the price of diamonds. 

 When buying "diamonds" online or stones you have not seen or had appraised independantly, make sure the diamond comes with a a grading report provided by an independent lab like the GIA.  
 Look inside the diamond...
When you are looking at diamond, look inside the stone. Use a 1200 X microscope. Even a small .01 diamond looks like a small rock. Diamonds with "S" grade "VS1" to "I3" have something inside the stone. Real diamonds (with above clarity) always have something inside. A fake stone is always clear, no inclusions. A top grade diamond with "S" clarity is very highly priced, it may not be something the ordinary working man will buy. 
 And Finally... ALWAYS REMEMBER: The 5 C's of Diamonds!


The last C is as important as the other C's. When you are ready to choose your diamond, see a reliable jeweler. Jewelers are the experts who will be happy to explain the 5 C's to you in more detail. They will also be able to show you beautiful diamonds in many sizes and can tell you the difference between various qualities of diamonds and how these differences affect the price you pay. Established jewelers prize their good reputation, and know you are making one of your most important purchases. They can help you select the very best your money can buy.

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