How to Spot Fake Jewelry
If we have learned anything from Netflix’s latest true-crime sensation, “The Tinder Swindler,” it is that things are not always as they seem. In life, there are several situations where you may need to check the validity of a diamond, such as resale, purchasing for the first time, or insuring a family heirloom.
We ask our diamond experts to share how to spot fake jewelry and what to do if you are unsure about the quality of your precious stone.
Signs It’s A Fake Diamond
One of the most reliable ways to check if you have a fake diamond is to check the setting. Generally, a fake diamond may be placed inside an expensive setting. If your piece is gold, check for markings that suggest it’s 10K/417, 14K/585, or 18K/750. If the jewelry is platinum, check for a PT stamp.
The absence of these markings may suggest that your ring is not genuine. If you are wondering what is fake jewelry made of, it will most likely be one of these gems:
- Cubic Zirconia
- Lab-grown diamond
- White Sapphire
- White Spinel
- White Topaz
- White Zircon
Another marking you can look for is a C.Z. This stamp suggests your diamond is made from cubic zirconia.
Each of these gemstones has its own distinguishing characteristics and chemical compositions. As a result, techniques to identify each one vary. However, if you are evaluating the legitimacy of a diamond, your main concern will be understanding and testing the characteristics of a genuine stone.
Source Your Diamonds from a Trusted, Expert Jeweler
At Uneek Jewelry, we are committed to ensuring that every stage of production is of the highest standard. We perform exacting due diligence both before and after manufacturing our products.
Our gold goes through a strict assay process prior to casting, and all our finished products complete a CVD check. A CVD diamond is a lab-grown diamond that is created through the process of chemical vapor deposition. CVD stands for chemical vapor deposition.
More colorless synthetic diamonds produced by CVD have been appearing on the market in recent years. However, these CVD-processed stones have several telltale characteristics when compared to diamonds produced by natural geologic forces.
When in Doubt, Get it Tested
There are several “at home” tests you can use to help determine if your diamond is real or fake. Some of these methods are reasonably reliable; others lack the rigor of a professional test. In truth, if you need total reassurance that you’re holding a legitimate diamond, the best thing you can do is to leave the testing to the experts.
Here are some of the home testing techniques you can use if you are wondering how to spot fake jewelry.
#1. “The Diamond Tester” on Amazon
Diamonds are good heat conductors. As a result, you can purchase a thermal conductivity probe to help you spot fake jewelry. If your stone disperses heat slowly, it is a good sign that the diamond is not real. Note that moissanite stones disperse heat in a similar manner to genuine diamonds. As such, this method has its limitations.
#2. Sparkle Test
The Sparkle Test is another way to learn how to spot fake jewelry. Hold your diamond under a light source and observe how it sparkles. A genuine diamond reflects light extremely well and scatters vibrant rainbow colors.
#3. Water Test
Real diamonds are dense. A straightforward way to test your diamond is to take a glass of water and fill it three-quarters of the way. Then, place your diamond into the water. If it sinks, it’s real; if it floats, it’s fake.
#4. Fog Test
The Fog Test is often considered the most reliable home test for fake jewelry. As mentioned above, diamonds conduct heat. To test the conductivity of your diamond, hold it in your hands and breathe on it. A light fog should form on the diamond. If it dissipates quickly, you likely have a natural diamond. However, if it stays put for a few seconds, it’s a sign you have fake jewelry.
#5. Newspaper Test
Diamonds refract light. One way to test this characteristic is to lay your stone, side down, over a newspaper. If you can read the lettering through the diamond, it’s almost certainly a fake. This test is best used on loose diamonds.
#6. Conductivity Test
As highlighted above, moissanite and diamonds have a similar level of thermal conductivity. These characteristics make well-constructed moissanite diamonds challenging to spot. One significant difference between the respective stones is that diamonds resist electricity, while moissanite does not. Your local, trusted jeweler will be able to perform this test on your behalf.
#7. Scratch Test
The Scratch Test is frequently cited as a way to spot fake jewelry. The idea is that because diamonds are the hardest mineral, you can scratch them against a mirror, and they will leave a mark. To understand why this method is unreliable, we should consult the Mohr scale. According to this measure of mineral hardness, a mirror is rated at 5.5, and a diamond is rated at 10. As such, the diamond will scratch the mirror. However, cubic zirconia, moissanite, and quartz have Mohr ratings of 8, 9.25, and 7, respectively. Each of these gems will leave a scratch on a mirror, making this test highly inconclusive.
If you are concerned your diamond may not be authentic, we highly recommend that you take it to an expert jeweler for testing and advice.
There are several situations where you need assurance that a diamond is genuine. Buying from a trusted and reputable jeweler is one of the best ways to guarantee that your diamond is authentic. However, if you are entering the resale market or have inherited or been gifted a diamond, you may want to check its provenance. While are some techniques you can use to check at home, none of them will provide you with the conclusive proof you can get by consulting a jewelry expert to review your pieces.
When you choose Uneek, you are assured of excellence and complete satisfaction across every aspect of the process. Uneek’s uncompromising dedication to providing only the best quality, the most refined artistry, and true personal service is our promise to every customer we serve.
Furthermore, all Uneek pieces are proudly designed and handcrafted in Los Angeles, CA. When you choose Uneek Jewelry, not only are you guaranteed top-class quality, you are stamping your support for American artisanship and contributing to the commitment of keeping the craft alive here in our home.
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