A Recent Q&A Letter from a Reader states:
“My Fiance Bought a 3 Diamond Engagement Ring at Macys. The Tops Sparkle however, when looking at the Sides they are Cloudy. How could this be? Macys will Not take the Ring back because it has been Sized. ”
And while I Responded and Answered her Question, I thought I would go more in Depth with this Subject since it’s a Pretty Big Issue. Hence the Purpose of this Post.
So Let’s Begin…
Macys is a Huge Nationwide Department Store Retailer (around 800 Stores) that is known to Sell Mid to High End Merchandise. When you Buy from them, you Feel Confident that you are getting Good Quality Items and that they’ll Stand Behind their Word. Right?
Actually this is True!
They do exactly what they Say they will do, and sell, if you take the time to Read their Policies and Understand the Quality that you’re Buying.
You just can’t Buy Blindly (Especially with Jewelry) and Expect Everything to come out Okay.
Macy’s, like every Store that Sells Jewelry, Stocks Merchandise and Diamonds of all Different Qualities. They have High End Jewelry, Average Quality, and Low End Goods to Meet the Consumer’s needs. Stuff that Fits in Every Price Range.
All Jewelry Stores carry a Mix of Products. That’s the way Diamonds are! Half the Diamonds on the Market Today are Considered Low Quality Goods. It’s because Diamonds really are that Rare that Half of what is Dug up out of the Earth has Eye-Visible Flaws in them.
Blame Mother Nature!
So Jewelry Stores all across the Country Sell a Combination of Low Quality, Mid Quality and High Quality. That’s just the way it goes.
Macy’s will Sell you Low Quality Jewelry, IF YOU BUY LOW QUALITY JEWELRY!
And if you Buy it, then you probably didn’t Inquire as to the Clarity or Color of the Stones first. You probably just Accepted the Diamonds and the Price and thought you were Making a Wise Choice. But, this has nothing to do with Macys. This happens in Every Store in Every City, Corporate, Independent, Mom-and-Pop Store, you name it. If you don’t Ask what you’re Buying, and did your Homework to see if it’s High Quality or Low Quality, then you’ll probably end up getting the Low End Stuff! Because people that don’t make an Effort to Inquire, are usually Focused More on Price than anything!
Price is NOT the way to Shop when it comes to Diamonds!
Let’s Talk about this Cloudy Diamond…
If a Diamond looks Cloudy or Foggy from a Side View, that usually means that the Clarity of the Stone is either SI2, I1, I2 or I3. These Clarities are where you can look
at a Diamond and see Black Spots, Lines, Cracks, Feathers, Cloudy and Foggy Areas.
So I would guess, that if the Diamond Faces up well from the Top View, and Cloudy from the Side, it’s an SI2 Clarity Diamond!
That’s exactly how I would Describe an SI2 Stone. They have Good Sparkle, but Exhibit some Flaws on the Side View. It’s actually what makes SI2 Stones so Attractive to Shoppers. The Price is GREAT and you get a Stone that Faces up Well (the most Important Aspect). You really get the Best of Both Worlds (See some SI2 Clarity Diamonds HERE!)
The only way around this Issue, is to Step up into an SI1, VS, or VVS Clarity Diamond. When you go Higher up in Clarity, the Flaws and Imperfections become Invisible to the Naked Eye, you’ll need a Microscope or a 10x Jeweler’s Loupe to see the Flaws.
But stepping up in Clarity also Increases the Price. In most Instances it could Double or even Triple the Price!
Clarity Good, Fluorescence Bad!
Now… There is one other thing that could cause a Diamond to look Foggy or Cloudy.
Fluorescence is where the Diamond has a Weird Reaction to Light and makes the Diamond look Murky, Milky, Foggy or Hazy. This is a Natural Phenomenon that some Diamonds have. You’ll know if your Diamond has Fluorescence if it Glows-in-the-Dark under UV Light (Black Light).
Your Diamond could look Foggy even if the Stone is a FLAWLESS Clarity Diamond! Fluorescence can Affect any Clarity of Diamond there is!
The only way around this is to Buy a Diamond with NO Fluorescence, or one that Faces up well in Normal Lighting.
The Return Policy SUCKS!
As Far as the NO Return Policy goes… this is actually a Pretty Common Policy for Jewelers and ALL Stores to have.
You Alter a Suit, you’re keeping that Suit.
You have a Dress Tailored to Fit you, it’s YOURS!
Anywhere you go, anything you Buy, if you Alter it, Size it, Personalize it, Engrave it, you’re making it your own and you can’t really Blame Stores for Not Wanting to take it back.
So before you Buy, Read their Policies or ASK before you make that Big Purchase. Find out what happens if you don’t like it, or need to Exchange it or Return it. It’s your Money, Inquire!
Finding out before hand will at least tell you what your Options are.
This is what I would do… Ask the Store if you can Upgrade the Stones.
Don’t Worry about the Ring or Mounting if you like it, just see if there is a way they can Swap out the Foggy Stone(s) for Better Quality Ones. Most Places would allow you to do this as long as you Pay for the Difference in Upgrade.
If you like the Ring and want to Keep the Ring, but just want to get Cleaner Stones, that is what I would do.
And, if you can, make sure the New Stones have No Fluorescence! :)
But, to be Honest with you, if the Fog is only seen from a Side View, you and you alone are going to be the only person to ever see this. No one is going to peer at your Lovely Ring and Yank your Hand Sideways to see the Diamond Pavilion… And, even if this did by chance happen, they would probably NOT see the Foggy Areas unless you Pointed them out to them. People don’t Notice Flaws unless they Scrutinize the Stone. Not something that would happen by looking at your Finger for a Second or Two!
So I say, KEEP THE RING!
Unless you really, really Want a Better Quality Stone and have the Money to do so, keep it.
Clean the Diamonds
One thing you can do that will Help out the Diamonds Immensely… Keep them Clean! A Clean Diamond Sparkles more, and the Sparkles Help Hide Inclusions, Flaws and Foggy Areas in the Stone Better (Get yourself a Jewelry Cleaner).
Clean your Diamond Ring Once a Week to keep Dirt and Debris from Sticking to the Stones, and the Diamonds will Shine as Big and Bright as the Day you Bought them!
And that Sounds like a Pretty Good Plan to me.
Hope this Helps!