How to Tell if a Diamond is Real or Fake


If you are interested in diamonds and wants a fool-proof way how to tell if a diamond is real or fake, you will most likely be disappointed by the following piece! This is because, while it is relatively easy to find out some fake diamonds, it is almost impossible to prove that those who pass the tests actually are diamonds! All you will have done is reduce the probability that they are fake. Read on for more information.

So Many Tests

Popular jewelry blogs often provide lists of tests to prove a diamond's reality or not that you can do at home. The truth of the matter is that while some of these may work, the difference between results is so slight that it is hard to tell whether your stone is real or not. For example, the fog test tells you to breathe onto the stone, telling you that if the condensation clears within 'a second or two' it is real, whereas if it lingers for 'three or four seconds' then it is a fake. Well, what if it lingers for two or three seconds? What if it is an exceptionally hot and dry day, causing rapid evaporation? Or a damp and humid day, causing condensation to linger? The posts advocating these tests never give these possibilities a mention – but they could absolutely affect the outcome of the 'test'!

Some are Damaging

Some of these home tests can be destructive, not only to a potential fake stone, but to real diamonds too. Any test which involves heating the stone, especially then plunging it into icy water, or scratching it, can result in damage. Using sandpaper may seem like a clever way to see if you have a diamond or not, but if the sandpaper has diamond flecks in it, even the best quality diamond will be scratched – and devalued at the same time! Heating a real diamond can result in the stone discoloring, and dropping it into icy water while it is very hot can exacerbate fractures and feathering inside the stone, affecting the clarity and possibly weakening it to breaking point. And even if you do have a fake stone, if it is attractive it will have some value – testing it to destruction leaves you with a discolored, damaged piece of jewelry that no one will value at all!

Look for Sharp Edges

One fairly reliable way to spot a fake is by looking at the edges of the stone. A properly cut stone will have clearly incised sharp edges, while some fakes have softer blurred edges from the way they are made. Again, this does not prove you have a diamond, but it can prove that you do not.


If you have a loose diamond that you wish to verify, you can do it at home with the following: a similar verified diamond, good lighting conditions, a minimum of 10x magnification, and a lot of patience. Spend some time – at least twenty minutes – carefully examining the doubtful stone, and make careful comparisons with your real diamond. If the reflectivity, appearance of inclusions and flaws, sharpness of the cut, and every other aspect of your doubtful stone matches up, then you most likely have a real diamond. Again, it is easier to prove a fake than to prove a stone's veracity!

Finally, you can invest in a small electrical conductivity tool: diamonds, being made from pure carbon, will conduct electricity readily, while no other stone has this property, not even moissanite, which is otherwise the closest stone to diamond when it comes to fakes. But for true peace of mind: take your stone to a reputable jeweler to be tested – or consult the certificate that should have accompanied any real diamond sold within the USA within the last 90 years!

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