How Do You Know if a Diamond is GIA Certified?
The Gemological Institute Of America (or GIA) is one of the most reputable organizations within the gem industry.
They’re an independent nonprofit organization and were the first to establish the 4Cs of gem-quality — a standard used by all jewelers today.
When looking for a diamond, one of the best things you can do to ensure that you’re getting a good purchase is to verify GIA diamond certification.
How to Find Out If a Diamond is GIA Certified?
Not every diamond available for sale has GIA certification.
However, the majority do, and you’ll likely get access to its grading information if you ask.
When you’re checking a diamond with a jeweler, ask to see its GIA grading report.
- The report will contain a full assessment of the 4Cs of the diamond: color, clarity, carat, and cut.
- To verify that the report is legitimate, you can access the GIA report check website, where you’ll have access to a digital version of the report.
- Each report has a unique number, and at times, this number is also inscribed on the diamond’s girdle. This number will be the one you use to search the GIA’s database.
A certified diamond is one that has undergone examination and grading.
By learning the quality, you can understand the price range of the gem and use it for comparison when checking for other diamonds.
Experts and consumers worldwide acknowledge GIA certified diamonds. Each graded diamond goes through an objective and careful process.
What if the Diamond Has No Certification?
A seller may be able to tell you the 4Cs of the diamond, but there’s no assurance.
At best, it’s only a guess — so there’s a chance that you’ll be overpaying for a lower quality gem. This isn’t to say that you can’t get high-quality uncertified gems, it just means that buying one is more of a gamble with potential downsides.
There are certain aspects of a gem that one can only examine with the right equipment.
For example, clarity requires tools to check for minuscule inclusions or blemishes.
These flaws are usually unseen by the naked eye. Symmetry and faceting are also factors to consider when it comes to cut quality.
Only the experience and knowledge of an expert grader can help you determine if a gem is of excellent quality.
Certifying with GIA
There are two ways you can send a gem to the GIA:
- The first one is by directly applying to the GIA website. You’ll have to create a laboratory account with them. This account will need verification with a scanned government-issued ID. If you’re applying on behalf of a business, you’ll need to submit business and company head documents.
- After submission, GIA will ask you to read a client agreement and then sign a document. The application process protects the integrity of the GIA. It ensures that they’re not dealing with someone conducting illicit activities.
- Once you complete the application, you can select the gem you want to send along with some of its features. You can also select the type of report that they’ll send you. These reports can range from 4C assessment to discovering a diamond’s origin. You can also have the diamond laser-inscribed by the GIA.
The website has details on how to package and ship your gem to them.
If you don’t want to bother with the hassle yourself, you can go to a jeweler and have them handle the application and shipping for you.
The plus side is that you won’t have to go through the application process, and you can pay for your gem’s insurance.
But going down this route may be more costly as a middleman will handle the grading application on your behalf.
Is GIA Certification Worth It?
Many labs can grade diamonds, but GIA is the most reputable. They’re very strict when it comes to the quality of their gems.
Some opt to not have a certification done at all and never fully ascertain the value of their diamond, however, this will not only hinder you but also derail jewelers or potential buyers.
Someone buying a gem from you will also want to know the specifics of its 4Cs so that they can offer a good price.
Without certification, you could end up losing value in a deal. This is true whether you’re buying a diamond or selling one.
GIA Grading Is a Standard We Should All Seek
The process should be far easier now that you know all of the details. GIA’s grading and certification help us to understand diamonds intimately and to put a fair price on them.
If you want assurance of a diamond’s quality, always verify GIA diamond certification.
If you have any valuable gemstones at home, you may want to consider sending them for certification.