Apart from maybe a house or a car, a piece of fine diamond jewelry could be one of the most expensive purchases you ever make, so it`s important to make sure you know exactly what you are getting before parting with your hard-earned cash.

Like almost any purchase, it is prudent to shop around. Prices and quality will vary significantly between sellers and the surge in internet trading mean you are not necessarily limited to shopping within the confines of your own environment. However, remember that if you are going to buy diamond jewelry online, you need to check the returns and delivery insurance policy extremely carefully, because you won`t be able to physically check the goods before you purchase them. By its very nature, jewelry is also wholly subjective, so different stockists will hold different styles and designs, making the choice available almost limitless.

Whatever you are looking to purchase, make sure you are comparing like for like. Diamonds come from various locations and in numerous forms and also carry different types of certification. Two diamond rings may look the same but the quality and origin of the stone could be totally different, so you will need to do some basic homework on how diamonds are categorized and how carat ratings are defined.

If you are buying a high quality, fine diamond, ask to see the original certification – do not accept a photocopy. This certification is the only guarantee as to the quality and authenticity of the diamond and will include any information on flaws or other imperfections, even those you cannot see. The following image is an example of the certificate that people get after buying a high quality of a diamond.

Never be afraid to ask to hold or inspect the jewelry or, where appropriate, to try it on. You wouldn`t buy a pair of shoes just from looking at them in the window, so this purchase should be no different. Reputable jewelers should have a high strength magnifier, so ask to look at the diamonds this way, to judge the clarity of the stones and the quality of their setting.

Unless you already have a definite idea of exactly what you`re looking for, try not to be seduced by the first thing you see. Most items of diamond jewelry look fantastic when viewed in isolation, especially when gleaming under the shop spotlights, but it is worth visiting a number of establishments to compare different styles and designs and of course, prices.

The golden rule is really very simple – never buy, or even place a deposit on, any piece of diamond jewelry that you have not actually seen in some form – ideally physically – no matter how beautifully or enthusiastically the seller describes it to you. It is also important to remember that you are the purchaser and it is up to you to decide which piece of jewelry you want to splash out on – not for the jeweler to try and sell you something that they want you to buy!

Buying diamond jewelry can be an exciting and satisfying experience, but it is, of course, a cliché to simply say that diamonds are a girl`s best friend, especially since some equally tempting and alluring acquaintances can be found at designer underwear, for in many cases, just a fraction of the cost.

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