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Black Diamonds – What are they and where are they from?

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Choosing a black diamond, or a Carbonado, is one of the most confusing and difficult things to do when looking for a ring. These black diamonds are a hot new fashion trend among brides to be, though it’s worth noting that due to a massive price variance, among other things, you really want to shop around before buying a particular stone.

The main problem with black diamonds is that more than 99.9% of black diamonds are simply coated or treated. This means that diamond cutters could polish industrial diamonds (worth cents, not dollars) coat them with a black lacquer and then market the resulting ‘black diamond’ to unsuspecting consumers at an extreme mark-up. If by any chance you have purchased one of these, an acid wash of any kind (spilling vinegar on your ring, for example), would cause the coat to dissolve, showing the true nature of the original diamond. Again, if you have purchased a treated black diamond, there’s no guarantee that the stone is a true diamond. Many unscrupulous jewellers peddle substitutes such as hematite to unsuspecting customers because even highly experienced jewellers can struggle to tell the two apart.

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With such a boom in popularity and the resulting flood of fakes hitting the market, it’s more important than ever that you get your diamonds from a jeweller who can tell the difference. Make sure that your black diamond comes with a GIA certificate – not only does this show that your diamond is genuine, it’s proof of ownership should your diamond ever be stolen. Just be aware that a black diamond will not have a clarity grade – they’re black, not clear. If a jeweller tells you that they have a VS or SI clarity black diamond, that’s your cue to leave the store before you get conned.

Once you have found a jeweller with the GIA certificate you need, make sure that the certificate states that the diamond is natural, not treated. Black diamonds are the hardest natural diamonds to polish, taking days or even weeks to get a black diamond to a high enough quality to be worn as jewellery. Treating a diamond on the other hand, is cheaper, quicker and much easier, which is why lesser known jewellers are so quick to do so and make a quick buck.

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If you have any questions about purchasing natural black diamonds, please feel free to contact a member of our team here at Marlow’s Diamonds today.

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