Q & A: Buying a diamond online

I received a great question a few days ago and I wanted to copy it here for everyone:

Tim Says:
I’ve been browsing through rings at a few different sites online. Now, I’m from the DC area, so of course I know Mervis from the ads, but I’m curious why I shouldn’t just buy my engagement ring online. Their rings look beautiful and they claim to be much cheaper.

  1. Ronnie Mervis Says:Tim:
  2. That’s a great question and I’m glad you asked it. First and foremost, it’s important to keep in mind that every diamond is unique. After billions of years underground and impossible probabilities of survival, it has been unearthed. Each diamond has its own chemical properties, trace impurities and natural birthmarks, known as inclusions.
  1. And like any other consumer good, diamonds come in a range of qualities. By now, I’m sure you’re familiar with the 4 Cs. That’s the starting point of classifying diamonds, but it’s important to know that it only begins to tell the story.
  2. Without getting too technical, there are 58 facets in a properly cut diamond. Each angle has to be cut in perfect symmetry to its opposite angle in order to produce the maximum sparkle and brilliance. With 58 facets, there are many, many proportions (of one angle to another) that ultimately determine a diamond’s beauty. The 4 Cs can’t possibly account for everything; they are used as classifications to simplify the many variables involved, but there can (and are) still relatively significant differences between any two stones of the same classification.
  3. Diamond traders know that better than anyone. At the major diamond trading centers, buyers wouldn’t think to buy anything of significant value without first seeing and examining it.
    So, to answer your question, you could buy a diamond off the Internet and take a chance. But the odds are that, despite the low price, you’re overpaying for poor quality. Online retailers typically stock diamonds that experienced diamond traders would never buy. These are the stones that my brother Zed looked at and refused because they didn’t meet our standards.
  4. So my advice to you is to buy like an expert and inspect a diamond yourself. Compare it to other stones of similar characteristics and pick the one with most sparkle. And be sure to get a expert’s advice. Whether you shop with us at Mervis Diamond Importers or elsewhere, don’t take the jump (completely) on your own. Inspect for yourself, of course, but take the guidance of an expert.
  5. Buying your first diamond may be the most important purchase of your life, so you’ll want to feel completely confident that you’ve made the right choice. You want to know it’s the right one FOR YOU.
  6. Presumably, you dated your partner for some time before popping the question. You didn’t just look at a picture and a description of the person and send an e-mail, “Will you marry me?” I joke because many people meet online, but even if they do, they still meet in person a few times before making the life commitment.
  7. It’s the same with buying fruit at the grocery store, choosing a puppy at the breeder or buying a diamond. You’ll want to see the product in person to really feel it, touch it and see if it “fits” you.

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