Diamond certification is a grading report that details a diamond’s main features. The certificate is usually created by impartial gemological labs such as GIA, AGS, IGI, EGL, GSI, and HRD.
Each diamond you send to the lab for testing is sent back with a certification. The report, made by a grading organization, records numerous key features of a diamond-like clarity, color, width, and length. Skilled gemologists assess the diamonds’ elements with the help of tools such as a microscope or loupe.
Various gem labs provide certification, and you probably know or have heard of a number of them. Does this mean that all the gem labs have the same standards? No. This post will look at diamond certifications and the gem laboratories you can trust.
What is Diamond Certification?
It is basically the assessment of a diamond’s quality by an unbiased gem lab (one that does not work with jewelers). The grading institution then provides a written document on the tested diamond. The certificate or report typically has a unique number that remains at the gem lab, and a copy of it is sent back along with the diamond. A tiny inscription is made on the outer edge (the “girdle”) of some certified diamonds. This is vital as the number becomes easily accessible, and you won’t have to worry if the certificate is lost or stolen.
The grading categories included in most diamond certificates are:
- Cut grade
- Clarity grade
- Color grade
- Whether it is natural or lab-created
- Carat weight
Numerous grading entities include a diamond “plot” in their certificates. A plot means an illustration of the “inclusions” or internal marks of the diamond. In simple terms, it is a diamond’s fingerprint. Keep in mind that not all labs include plots in their certificates.
What are the Best Diamond Certifications?
The GIA and AGS are the most credible diamond certification institutions. This is because they are accurate in grading features like Cut quality, Clarity, and Color. Compared to other labs, these two are more thorough with their grading. You can always trust the details of a diamond that comes with an AGS or GIA certificate. This is why we advise that you only buy diamonds that have GIA and AGS certification.
GIA Diamond Certification
The Gemological Institute of America, popularly known as GIA, is a non-profit, independent entity. It was started in 1931 and is considered the leading authority in gemology the world over. GIA’s diamond grading abilities are unrivaled. The organization’s diamond and gemstone grading system was introduced in 1953 and is known globally. Manufacturers from all parts of the globe have their diamonds and gemstones analyzed and examined by the GIA.
Experienced gemologists at GIA uphold the highest levels of science, professionalism, and integrity. So, with GIA certification, buyers are assured that an impartial gemologist did the jewelry appraisal.
AGS Diamond Certification
The American Gem Society (AGS) has upheld a high level of credibility in the diamond and jewelry industry since 1943. The Society has been offering top-quality education to jewelry customers and professionals for decades and provides courses to all divisions of the diamond industry. In 1996, the AGS started a lab to provide diamond certification services.
The AGS uses an objective and conservative approach when grading a diamond, and this has helped it become one of the most reputable gemological labs across the globe. Thus, the Society can accurately appraise a diamond.
IGI Diamond Certification
The International Gemological Institute (IGI) was founded in 1975. It is the biggest independent gemological lab and is found in all the main diamond areas. (?) IGI strives to offer fine jewelry consumers and professionals accurate certification as well as premium courses. Numerous skilled gemologists analyze a diamond’s elements and provide a comprehensive IGI certificate.
HRD Diamond Certification
Created in Antwerp 1973, the Hoge Raad Voor Diamant (HRD) or the “Diamond High Council” was initially the European partner to the GIA. HRD deals in the world diamond trade involving diamond organizations and public governments. The Council oversees and reports more than half of the globe’s loose diamonds.
HRD invests in advanced research and education in the diamond sector. An HRD diamond certificate follows globally accepted rules and is trusted by customers and jewelers.
What to Look for In a Diamond Ring Certification
Considering the price over the certification
You need to thoroughly assess the price of the diamond, regardless of its certificate. The diamond’s cost needs to reflect its Cut, beauty, and actual quality, not only on the certificate but also to the naked eye.
If you doubt the price of the diamond, you can get a professional to look at it before buying. Get in touch with us if you have any questions about diamond certifications and costs.
Check for consistency over strictness when comparing diamond grading organizations. For instance, the IGI does not grade a diamond the same way as the GIA. The assessment of major features such as Clarity, Color, and in some cases, Cut depends on the reputation of the grading entity. If you notice that one lab provides a single Clarity grade higher than another lab on every occasion, then you have a reason to doubt its analysis.
Let’s take Color grades as an example to see the significance of this issue. When assessing the diamond, we advise that you opt for the H color or higher. With an IGI certificate, you may think you have gotten the best deal when you pick an H-color diamond. But when you arrive home, you will be surprised to see a yellow tint in the diamond. In reality, the diamond is an I color according to GIA diamond certification. Thus, the IGI does not provide a precise analysis.
Although comparing the various grading entities helps, checking for consistency is the best way to find the diamond you’re looking for.
Contrary to what many people think, no organization can provide definite grading. For instance, no entity can correctly define what an “SII” Clarity or “G” Color looks like.
One organization may refer to one color grade as “G,” while another refers to it as “H” consistently. There’s no problem with this difference as long as the color grading is consistent.
Keep in mind that even when an entity shows consistency in its grading, you should completely trust it. You might end up purchasing a diamond with a weak certificate at an inflated price and feel like you got conned when you realize it. You need to get value for your money.
Is a Diamond without a Certification Worthless?
Yes. A diamond without certification is worth less than one with it. Note that a diamond certificate will not change your stone’s quality. In theory, the value of your diamond is not determined by a simple certificate. But in the real world, the absence of a diamond certificate causes more harm than good.
If your diamond isn’t certified by unbiased experts, there’s no way to tell its true quality. Thus, in the event that you lose it, it will be difficult to replace, loan against, or resell. Investors, insurance companies, and buyers will likely give a stone with no certification a lower value.
Note that a diamond engagement ring is among the costliest emotional purchases people make in their lifetimes. Therefore, go for one with a diamond certificate to maintain the value of your investment.
Generally, purchasing a diamond with certification will leave you stress-free and happy with your buying decision. Our wide range of diamond engagement rings comes with the best certification. Check out our jewelry collection!
We hope you now have some clarity on the importance of acquiring a diamond with certification. You may still have questions about choosing or understanding the ideal certified diamond for you. If this is you, please get in touch with us now!