Have you heard about GIA-Certified Diamonds, Is it your first time in the diamond market? Are you hearing unfamiliar terms like certified diamonds and you cannot make heads or tails of them?
Well, brace yourself for this whistlestop enlightenment about everything you need to know about certified diamonds and how to go about buying them.
Without this information, you would be as good as a blind man trying to differentiate between diamond-shaped glass and genuine diamonds. You see, the process of buying these gemstones requires that you take into consideration aspects like the grade of the diamonds, their source, and their true value.
You may find it interesting that even gemologists may have a hard time telling apart a lab grown diamond from one grown naturally. But do not get intimidated by this. There are set standards to determine the quality of diamonds and grade them in an easy-to-understand way for the ordinary buyer.
A lot of the information available about diamonds is provided by the GIA. It is therefore important to know a bit about this body and the certification they provide. First of all, GIA is the acronym for the Gemological Institute of America. It has been in existence since 1931 and through the decades has conducted extensive research on diamonds and other gemstones, including lab-grown diamonds.
One of the reasons the institute is trusted more than other similar bodies is that it is a non-profit organization. Without the drive to make money, the institute can be depended on to produce unbiased reports about diamonds as well as trusted certification.
Located in California, USA, GIA devotes time and resources to research and education in the field of precious stones. Jewelers, traders, and buyers depend on them to provide needed standards and information about diamonds.
For example, the GIA is credited with coming up with the 4’C grading system for diamonds which we will look at more closely later. It is no surprise therefore that certification from the institute is held in high regard in comparison to other bodies. The procedure of grading diamonds according to their carat weight, color, clarity, and cut has proven efficient in separating fakes from the real deal as well as saving buyers from paying more for inferior quality diamonds.
What are GIA-Certified Diamonds?
Most products in a supermarket will have information about the product that can help you decide whether to buy it. For example, you can choose to buy gluten-free foods or non-GMO potatoes because there is a label that alerts you to that fact. Similarly, certified diamonds have information that enlightens you about their origin and their quality. For example, if you do not like the idea of purchasing conflict diamonds or those that put a strain on the environment through the mining process, You can opt for lab-grown diamonds. Certified lab grown diamonds will have information about their origin. This would include the lab where they were grown, the carat weight, clarity, cut, and color. GIA also offers a grading system so that it is easier to confirm its value.
So just like product information on the packaging of goods in supermarkets, certified diamonds have a certificate from GIA stating their unique characteristics.
Lab Grown Diamonds Certified by GIA
Scientists have been growing diamonds in a lab as far back as the 1990s. Their popularity has been steadily growing with the GIA taking a deeper interest in these man-made gems in 2007. At that point though, lab grown diamonds were not considered to be of the same quality as natural ones. The Institute therefore would provide reports on the diamonds but of an inferior grade.
Jewelers and labs growing these diamonds eventually looked to a parallel certification institute to get certification for LGD. The institution recognized the lab gems as real diamonds and provided credible certification. This popularized the stones made in labs and more jewelers started buying and selling them as affordable alternatives to natural diamonds.
With increased popularity, extensive research, and the visible quality of LGD, the GIA finally accepted these diamonds as real diamonds. This is as recently as 2020 when it began issuing certification for lab grown diamonds. For the sake of transparency, however, lab-grown diamonds certified by GIA have different quality reports. The report is in digital format only. It also specifies that the diamonds were grown in a lab.
Effect of GIA-Certified Diamonds on Buyers
Buying diamonds at times can be like feeling your way in the dark through a room full of furniture and other objects on the floor. It is much easier to get around in such a room if you have a flashlight. GIA certification serves as that needed light to show you your path. With the grading system provided by the Gemological Institute of America, there is better order and consistency. It is a lot easier to price these stones and for a consumer to choose what they want.
With the increased demand for LGD, it is important that there is a body that stays on top of the developments and offers guidance.
It is encouraging to see that both the sellers and buyers agree on and trust the certification offered by GIA. The outlook for these gems is promising as more people readily demand them. Experts also point out that it is much easier to meet demand with lab diamonds than with natural ones.
Grading of Lab Grown Diamonds
First of all, you need to acknowledge that lab grown diamonds undergo the same process as natural diamonds, only that this process is accelerated. The end result is a diamond with the same properties as a natural one but grown in a matter of days or weeks.
Because of this, the grading of LGD is the same as natural diamonds. The GIA will inspect the stone to spotlight any flaws and confirm its quality.
With identical features to natural diamonds, many people choose LGD because they offer more for less. They are a perfect substitute without the heart-stopping expense.
LGD can be grown using 2 methods. One is Chemical vapor deposition (CVD) and the other is high-pressure high temperature (HPHT). The report will indicate which of these processes was utilized in growing the diamonds. Additionally, whatever process may have been employed to improve the clarity of the stones is documented.
For the benefit of jewelers and customers, the letters LGD are curved on the diamond. The letters can however only be seen using a microscope.
When a price is set by a jeweler or even the manufacturer, the certification provided helps to guide that pricing. Information like the 4Cs that are included in the certificate can determine what the best price would be. GIA certification, therefore, helps to create sanity within the lab-grown diamond industry. Quality and value can be determined and the fakes are separated from genuine diamonds.
Now, when you buy a certified diamond, you can confidently determine what you want and if it will serve the purpose you are buying it for.