The Most Common Questions We Get About Diamond Certification, Answered
You'll become intimately familiar with the 4 Cs — cut, carat, clarity and color — while shopping for a diamond engagement ring, but there's one extra C you should also know about: certification. In simple terms, diamond certification is like a report card — and the experts are the teachers that evaluate the diamond for its unique characteristics (the 4 C's), along with additional information about its symmetry, polish, and fluorescence, or glow.
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What are the Different Types of Diamond Certifications?
The jewelry industry relies on four different organization for diamond certifications:
- The Gemological Institute of America (GIA)
- American Gem Society (AGS)
- European Gemological Laboratory (EGL)
- International Gemological Institute (IGI)
Each of the four diamond certification bodies will evaluate the gemstone's cut, clarity, color, and weight, but they all have their own methods — and rating systems — for the grades they give. Diamond certification is subjective too, so some organizations may rate aspects of a diamond differently than others.
Which Diamond Certification is Best?
Some of the organizations that do certifications are more reputable than others. The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) is recognized by the industry as the most trustworthy in its grading process — and the organization actually created a lot of the grading systems still used today to certify diamonds.
GIA evaluates diamonds anonymously and several experts evaluate each diamond before grades are given, making it the most impartial — and most trusted — in the industry. That's why With Clarity stands by GIA and only uses its certification system for the diamonds we sell.
For lab diamonds, we stand by the International Gemological Institute (IGI) and use their certification system. Ultimately, we want our customers to shop with confidence.
Do all Diamonds have Certificates?
No, certificates are not a requirement to sell diamonds — and it's possible to get a high-quality diamond without having it certified. So, why get a certified diamond? It's simple: You'll know you're getting what you paid for.
Are Certified Diamonds Better?
Diamonds can be altered through lasers or heat to remove imperfections (inclusions) or improve clarity. Without a certificate, you can only hope the seller is telling you the truth. That said, the diamond certification process isn't free and adds to the overall cost of the ring, but not by a lot.
How Much Does it Cost to Certify a Diamond?
The price difference between getting a certified or a non-certified diamond is pretty small in the overall picture. A GIA diamond certification is based on the carat weight and can range anywhere from $58 to over $2,800. Most diamonds will cost somewhere between $58 and $250 to be certified.
So, does the customer pay for the certification, or does the jeweler? It depends on the company. That said, With Clarity has access to nearly every GIA-certified diamond in the world, so every stone you purchase through us already has the grading built into the price. This all-in-one price not only helps you budget better but also gives you peace of mind knowing what you're paying for is what you'll actually get.