Diamond Studs: How To Buy Earrings
There are multiple reasons why diamond studs are the classic go-to piece of jewelry for so many women. Not only are they stylish and beautiful, they are also versatile. They go just as well in a evening gown as they do with jeans and a t-shirt. They lay closely and securely to the ear, so they are not only comfortable, but perfect even for active wear.
Whether it’s a gift for yourself or to wow your significant other, a beautiful pair of diamond earrings can make you feel good about yourself and increase your confidence no matter where you find yourself.
A Pair of Studs is a Significant Purchase
For a pair of 1-carat total weight diamond stud earrings, you will probably be spending close to $2,500, depending on the color and clarity.
So, it is a significant purchase and a little knowledge can help you choose the right pair, for you.
So, it is Time to do Your Research!
You want to guarantee you are making an educated decision and selecting the right diamond earrings.
We are here to make that whole process just a little bit easier on you. We are going to be reviewing absolutely everything you need to know about diamond earrings, from what to look for in the perfect earrings to how to get the best value.
How to Buy Diamond Stud Earrings
Like buying any diamond, you need to balance the 4 C's (color, clarity, cut and carat weight). Each of these categories will influence the overall cost of your diamond studs.
The term "carat" describes the weight of a diamond--but not is perceived size.
A single carat is about 200 milligrams, so diamonds with higher carats are heavier--in total weight. Some are cut in a way that they are very deep (bigger looking from the side). Since no one is going to be looking at your studs from the size, we suggest you know the proportions of you diamond and not rely just on carat size. A diamond can have a higher carat weight, but actually have a smaller diameter than lower carat-weight diamond that is not cut as deep.
There is an ideal depth that a diamond should have: if it is too shallow then too much light will escape from the bottom of the diamond and will not be refracted back to the eye--this cuts down on the sparkle of the diamond. The same thing happens if a diamond is too deep. In this case the light doesn't escape at the buttom, but gets "lost" towards the bottom of the and doesn't refract back--also cutting down on the sparkle of the diamond. So the depth should be just right--not too deep and not too shallow.
One thing to clarify with studs is that the total carat size of diamond stud earrings is for the entire pair. That means each diamond in a 1-carat stud earring set is 0.5 carats. When it comes to smaller sizes, you will want to be careful that you are not choosing a pair that is too small.
So, just how big should you go?
The average carat size for diamond earrings would probably be 1- carat.
What About Lab-Grown Diamonds?
Diamonds are expensive because they are very rare. The amount of 1-carat gem quality that are mined in a year would fit in one exercise ball. Diamonds take billions of years to grow deep beneath the earth’s crust, diamond mining is expensive and speculative--there hasn't been a new discovery of a significant mine in 20 years.. Although lab-grown diamonds are less expensive about 30% less, they have problems in that there is no stopping the process to become cheaper and more efficient. This means that the pair of lab-grown stones will likely be worth much less in the future, with no natural bottom to the market.
A 1-carat diamond grown in a lab might only cost you $800; however, the resale value is practically zero.
Think About Every Detail
Think about the type of jewelry that she already wears. It would be even better if you could find her current favorite earrings that she seems to love. There is a good chance that she likes them for a rather good reason.
Just be sure that this is not a spur of the moment decision.
How to Buy Diamond Stud Earrings: The Definitive Guide for 2021
If you do not know so much about diamonds, do not feel bad, you are not alone. There are many factors that go into valuing them, and it takes many years of experience to become versed in all of them.
One rule of thumb, there are no free lunches in the diamond business. If a diamond seems too good to be true it is. You might not be able to identify why it is being sold at such a discounted price but know there is a reason.
Learn About the 4 C’s of Diamonds
The 4C's are a set of criteria that was developed decades ago by the GIA (Gemological Institute of America). It is made up of carat, color, cut and clarity.
Here is what you need to know about each.
The carat of a diamond describes the weight of the diamond. Not the size the diamond appears to be.
The cut of a diamond describes the appearance of the diamond’s proportions of the diamond. In a round brilliant this has been mathematically figured out. As we described earlier, these proportions will ultimately determine how much sparkle your diamonds have.
- Very good
The higher the grade, the more valuable the diamond will be the more expensive it will be.
Note: The cut is not the same as the shape.
We will go over the difference in the next section.
The color of a diamond basically describes how white it is. This is rated on a scale of D to Z, with D having minimal coloring and Z being considered “yellow-grade.” So, a diamond will be a lot more yellow as you continue through the alphabet.
Look at the ratings.
The grade of color you end up choosing will all come down to personal preference. Some women prefer whiter clear stones (closer toward D), while others might prefer a little extra color (more toward Z). The less color, the higher the price (usually).
The clarity of a diamond is a measure of its imperfections. The term “inclusions” will describe the defects on the inside of the diamond. In contrast, the term “blemishes” will focus more on the outside shortcomings.
The more imperfections a diamond has, the less bright and cloudier it might look. However, many times the inclusions do not detract from the beauty of the diamond although they do allow for a less expensive price. Here is a look at the clarity grades.
- FL: Flawless
- IF: Internally flawless
- VVs: Very very slightly included
- VS: Very slightly included
- SI: Slightly included
- I: Included
Most importantly, you need to consider what is most important to you. You will need to balance each of these elements depending on your budget and what aspects are most important to you.
Pro Tip: Since stud diamond earrings are worn on the ears, it will be difficult for anyone else to notice blemishes or inclusions. Do not put too much weight in the clarity of a diamond unless you can physically see the difference from afar.
Consider the Shape
The most popular shape is round brilliant. This is the most common shape and is seen in about 75% of diamonds. As a point of interest, round is the most expensive of the cuts. It is for this reason that we have chosen round as the shape of our JW Signature Studs.
What About Color?
Natural colored diamonds are very expensive, since they are even more rare than "white". The most popular color besides white is yellow and those will run you quite a bit depending on their saturation of color. This saturation of yellow, should not be confused with colors of white diamonds in the M-Z range. These will be yellow, but not the yellow you are looking for. There is a whole other rating scale for saturation of color.
But there are real colored ones too.
Picking the Setting of Diamond Earrings
Perhaps the most important thing that you need to think about is the actual setting of the diamond. This describes how the diamond is being attached to the rest of the earring.
The most common set-up would be prong. This type of setting keeps your diamond in place with the addition of three, four or six prongs.
There are two very popular classic prong settings to choose from: Martini settings which from the side are shaped like a martini-glass and basket setting which the diamonds sit in basket setting.
Your preference will be look and comfort.
Platinum is definitely a great choice if you value a durable material that does not scratch or wear. The problem with platinum is the steep price. As of right now, platinum is averaging about $25 per gram, which can add up.
On the other hand, you can never go wrong with gold.
You do need to do your research when it comes to the actual gold you are using. Though higher karat gold is much purer and more expensive, it is also a lot less durable. So, you will want to find a middle ground when it comes to the karat.
Here is a brief look at current gold prices based on the pennyweight value karat per gram.
- 14K: About $30
- 18K: About $40
We like 14K because it is a nice balance between quality, affordability and durability.
How to Buy the Best Diamond Stud Earrings
It can be easy to not feel confident when you do not know much about the product you are buying. At the end of the day, you just want to get a beautiful pair of diamond earrings at the best value.
Pro Tip: Do not just buy diamond stud earrings from the first jewelry store you shop from, whether online or off. A jeweler might insist that particular stones are the best they have, but that only refers to their inventory. Check out other places to see what they offer.
This is everything you need to know about getting the best deal.
Put Less Value in the Name of the Brand
When it comes to larger name brands you are paying for the name recognition. There is nothing that says that these products are any better than a smaller name company. Focus on the diamond, not the name attached to it!
Get Jewelry Insurance
If you are spending a lot on brand new diamond stud earrings, it would be a good idea to invest in jewelry insurance. The best part is that it is not at all expensive.
Sometimes, it is only 1% of the value of your jewelry.
That means it will only cost you about $10 a year to insure a $1,000 piece of jewelry. Jewelry insurance is well worth the money if you happen to lose or destroy your piece of jewelry within 100 years.
Yes, 100 years!
What is even better is that you usually will not have to pay any type of deductible. That means you can have your diamond stud earrings replaced without any cost to you.
Keep in mind that insurance is not the same thing as a warranty.
A warranty is usually offered by the jewelry store. Plus, this only covers damages that the jewelry store caused. So, it will not include any wear and tear or costs that you experience in your everyday life.
One of the best ways to make sure that you are getting the most bang for your buck is by getting your diamond studs IGI-certified.
IGI stands for the International Gemological Institute. This is an accredited laboratory that will certify the quality of your diamond studs. GIA laboratory is great for loose minerals, but they do not certify already made diamond jewelry. Without certification there is no way to accurately access you are getting the color, clarity and cut of the diamond the seller is telling you, you are.
If you think your buying G-H color and SI clarity and the studs are actually K-color and I3 quality, the price you are paying may look like a bargain, but it is far from it. Remember: If it looks too good to be true, it probably is!
You might not be experienced in buying diamond stud earrings but there is nothing that says you cannot get the perfect pair. You need to make sure you are doing enough research and putting a little thought into your final purchase.
But we understand that this can be a bit overwhelming.
Our Lumije Signature Studs were designed to take the guesswork out of buying the perfect pair of studs. They are IGI-certified and are custom-made just for you. You choose the color, and clarity option (we off two)--then choose the total carat weight that best fits your budget. You get classic, well-made, and ethically-sourced natural diamonds that are the color and clarity we say they are.
Our goal is to provide women with quality fine jewelry that makes them feel beautiful.
But we also enjoy giving back to those who need it. That is precisely why a portion of every sale we make goes directly to entrepreneurial women in developing countries throughout the world.
And, as always, if you have any questions or comments, leave them below.