How to Appraise a Diamond Online

By Julia Barrus

Whether you've got diamonds you want to sell or you want to know if that diamond you just got is the real thing, diamond appraisal is a fairly easy skill to learn. As with any trade, there are varying degrees of knowledge and ability among appraisers. This article will teach you how to appraise diamonds by using online information. You will learn the features of diamonds that are most important when distinguishing their worth. Most importantly, you'll learn how to tell whether that 4 karat rock is the genuine article or a cubic zirconium knockoff.

Things You'll Need

  • Internet
  • Diamond
  • Magnifying glass

Step 1

Examine the diamond's cut. All diamonds have a certain way that they are cut to bring out the brilliance. The most common diamond cuts are round, princess, marquise, oval, pear, emerald, radiant, heart and Asscher. When determining value, after you assess the cut, the most important thing to do is make sure the cut is precise and not too shallow or too deep. The light the diamond casts will determine this.

Step 2

Determine the color of the diamond. Many people don't know that diamonds come in many colors and the most rare and valuable are the colorless variety. At the end of this article is great color chart that shows many of the most common diamond colors, cuts and shapes. From there, you can compare your diamond to the brown, yellow, pink, etc. diamonds and make note of its relative color or lack thereof.

Step 3

Make note of the clarity. There are scales of clarity online that determine the diamonds flawlessness. A truly flawless diamond is very hard to find and the more flawless a diamond is, the more expensive it is. Therefore, when looking through a magnifying glass or a jewelers loupe, you should make note of any flaws, their character and approximate size. Not all flaws decrease the diamond's value. Those that impact its brilliance are the most important when determining value.

Step 4

Use the site at the end of this article to estimate the diamond's carat weight. This is probably the easiest to do since the online program will give you the diamond's approximate weight based on its size. Naturally, the larger the diamond, the more expensive. However, a small flawless diamond is worth more than a larger flawed, off-color, improperly cut diamond.

Step 5

After you have figured out the four C's of diamond assessing, you can begin the appraisal process. Check out major retailers and see what they are offering as selling prices for diamonds of your similar cut, carat, clarity and color. You may choose to have your diamond assessed by a professional diamond appraiser who has the tools to precisely determine its value. Keep in mind that often you may end up paying more for the appraiser than you would to just invest in the tools to do the job yourself.

Tips & Warnings

  • Cubic zirconium does not shine in subdued lighting. True diamonds do. This is an easy way to distinguish actual diamonds from those that are lab created without going through the hassle of determining the four C's.