Diamonds are unquestionably one of the most coveted items in the world. In addition to their vast usefulness in mining and other heavy industries, they are also one of the most commonly used items in engagement and anniversary rings, and are synonymous with class and sophistication. One of the reasons why diamonds are so in demand is because of the common belief that they are nearly impossible to fake or forge. This legitimacy increases both their industrial value as well as their value as a status symbol. In 2012, retail diamond sales exceeded 72.1 billion dollars, and exploration and production was just under 15 billion, two of the highest valuations (adjusted for inflation) in world history.
However, a recent study indicates that some of the oldest diamonds in the world are, in fact, fake. The report discusses the discovery by geologists that a group of petite gems inside zircon crystals, dated at over 4.5 billion years old, contained fragments of a paste that was mistaken for diamonds. Effectively what this means is that the previously-held belief that diamonds and cubic zirconium gems are distinct enough to not be mistaken for one another is not as secure as once believed. Previously, it was believed that any jeweler worth his or her salt would be able to easily detect a forgery that was trying to be passed off as a genuine diamond. This discovery means that some of the key indicators that would prevent a cubic zirconium ring from being mistaken for a real diamond are no longer reliable.
Fortunately, a highly qualified jeweler will still be able to easily detect the difference between a genuine diamond and a zirconium-based one, despite the fact that they can look more similar than previously believed. However, this means that it is more important than ever before to buy and sell your diamonds with a reputable and experienced jeweler. When it comes to making what for most is one of the largest retail purchases in their lives, you should absolutely make sure that you aren’t getting a bad deal, or getting a product that isn’t what it is believed to be. In addition to the risk of fraud by a disreputable jeweler, customers must now also worry about a jeweler that isn’t experienced or careful enough to detect whether a diamond is genuine or not.