How To Spot Fake Jewelry

With the rise of the internet for selling items, distribution of fake jewelry is on the rise. Fake jewels and fake designer jewelry have always been a problem for the average buyer, but internet sales mean that it is no longer a case of avoiding suspicious shops.

There are many tricks used to create fake jewelry and methods you can use to spot them. When it comes to gem stones, good-quality fakes often use a slice of real gemstone atop a cheap stone. Cheaper quality clear stones are also sandwiched together with coloured bonding agents to create the look of a genuine coloured stone. Usually, the best way to spot these two faking methods is with a magnifying glass or microscope.

Stones are not always outright fakes. Sometimes genuine stones are dressed up to look more expensive than their size and quality warrants. Poor quality stones can be mounted in a setting with a solid back, so that foil can be put behind the stone to help reflect light and alter its appearance.

A descriptive gem name is one clue that the jewel is not what it seems. Like many proprietary names, descriptive gem names often give a more expensive gem name to a cheap stone. Red garnets are often called American rubies. Green sapphires are called Oriental emeralds. This is a centuries-old practice and a good clue that the gem is not genuine.

Adventure stories are often full of the subject of fake diamonds, but tricksters have come a long way since then. Cubic Zirconia can be spotted if you consult a reputable jeweler, as they are heavier than real diamonds and glow yellow rather than blue under a UV light. More difficult to detect is moissanite, a crystal that very closely resembles diamond and often tricks even skilled appraisers. When buying a diamond, it is best to have it appraised by several diamond specialists and get their written assessments.

Fake gems are often mounted in inferior, cheap settings so keep an eye on the quality of the metal of the setting as well.

When it comes to gold, the karat stamp is no longer a guarantee of quality. It can be incredibly difficult to spot whether gold is genuine or fake if you are buying it over the net. The most important factor is whether you trust the seller.

Trust in the seller is the major factor for most internet jewelry sales. Con artists are getting more sophisticated in their methods of selling over the net. When buying over the net, spend some time researching the seller’s history and observing their behaviour. If they sell a high volume of ‘quality’ jewelry very cheaply, they are likely a con artist. Remember that rare and expensive jewelry is rare and expensive: if the seller has loads of pieces in various sizes and sells it for a song, they are likely to be fakes. Con artists also frequently misspell designer names to create a legal loophole if they get caught.

The most important thing to do when buying jewelry is to remember that if something seems an incredible bargain, it is probably a fake. Quality jewelry comes at a price.

Jewelers are generally able to detect fakes, so if you are uncertain about any of your jewels, consult an expert. Once you have purchased your jewelry, keep it safe by having gems engraved where possible and taking it to be cleaned only by reputable firms.


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