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Diamond substitutes and the Yehuda diamonds


Cubic zirconia – A CZ is not a “man-made diamond.” It’s a diamond stimulant that looks similar to a diamond. It does not have any of the properties of a diamond-it simply looks like a diamond. And while a well made CZ looks pretty darned good, it doesn’t have anywhere near the hardness of a diamond and will quickly become worn and dull. Any good jewelry can spot the difference between a diamond and a CZ in a moment. The CZ has a plastic look and has a light blue cast through the entire stone. The sure way to tell is to weigh the stone-a CZ will weigh 55% more than a diamond of the same size.

The synthetic diamonds – A synthetic diamond is a man-made diamond. Its pure carbon subjects to intense heat and pressure – same as a natural diamond. But it’s not a natural diamond, and a gemologist can tell the difference. Synthetics do not appreciate in value and have no trade in value. In April 1995, synthetic diamonds became available to the public, selling for about two-thirds the cost of natural diamonds. There are no secondary markets for these stones, so if you buy one you’re stuck with it forever. If you tried to resell it you’d get back only 10% of your initial investment, versus an 80% resell average for a good quality natural diamond that was correctly purchased.  

The Yehuda Diamond – The Yehuda diamond, relatively new to the diamond marketplace, is named for Zui Yehuda of Israel. He is the man who developed the process of “filling” a flawed diamond to make it more attractive. Yehuda takes a diamond that has cracks on the outside and fills the cracks with clear molten glass. The cracks disappear. Using this process, Yehuda can take a stone with an I1 clarity grade and make it look like an SI2. The advantage of the Yehude diamond is that you can get a slightly better looking diamond without paying a higher price.

The disadvantages of the Yehuda diamonds:
-    We don’t know how long the treatment will last. You might be wearing the diamond one day and it will look great, and the next day the filler will fall out, leaving you with a flaw stone.
-    Any repair work on the setting could damage the filler.
-    Most people don’t like the idea of having a diamond that’s not all diamond. If you buy a Yehuda diamond, you might have a very hard time reselling it.

The Federal Trade Commission requires a jeweler to disclose whether a diamond has been treated. But many jewelers don’t have the expertise to know if a stone has been treated, and may buy or sell a Yehuda diamond unknowingly.  

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