People are always a bit skeptical when ordering diamonds from the web.
As they should be.
Because diamonds are a huge purchase, and you’re buying sight-unseen (many online stores just give you a sample stock-photo). If you order from a questionable place (with no return policy, like ebay or craigslist), you could get ripped off (or way over-charged).
This is why I always advise buying from reputable online retailers like James Allen.
So let’s test them…
I’ve decided to purchase a diamond engagement ring from James Allen to show you exactly how the process works; what you’ll do, the steps you’ll take, and what you’ll get for your money.
This is my JamesAllen.com Review:
The very first thing you’ll have to decide, is not what type of diamond to buy, it’s actually choosing the proper mounting (your ideal setting)… although you really could do this in any order, it’s just easier this way.
This sounds rather backwards, but most mountings are made for specific carat weights or shapes. Meaning, if you pick out your dream diamond, it may not fit into the mounting you love. So finding the perfect mounting is first.
Go to James Allen, from the menu select “engagement rings“, and then “start with a setting“. It’s number one. It brings up mountings like these:
My preference for a great engagement ring is always a pave or halo mounting (halos make every diamond look bigger). They enhance a diamond, make them sparkle more, and really makes an impact.
So looking at the halo mountings, here is what you’ll find:
I pick the first one, this 14k white gold halo, with .33 carat total weight. It’s simple, slim, elegant, and beautiful.
You’ll see that you can choose either a round diamond (above) or a cushion cut diamond (below) from the options. I select the cushion cut (since I am a big fan of cushions, and you can save tons of money purchasing them–20% cheaper than a round brilliant).
The mounting has 42 diamonds, and the quality is impressive (much higher than any mall store): VS2-SI1 clarity, F-G color.
I “select this setting“, and now it’s time to add a diamond. You’ll see a popup that says: What would you like to do? Add a Diamond; Add a Gemstone; or Add a Recommended Diamond (let them choose).
I select “Add a Diamond” and am taken to the loose diamond page.
I select “CUSHION” from the shapes (3rd one over), and pull up all of the loose cushion cut diamonds:
I want Big and Beautiful
So I start moving the sliders to achieve a stunning diamond (narrowing down my choices, while still looking for a great deal): I select VS2, Colorless quality (my favorite combo).
D color is the best of the best. There is nothing higher. It’s the top color grade in the world. Pure-white diamonds give you an ultra-bright dance of light. It’s a day and night difference when compared with near colorless diamonds (G, H, I, J). Compare them yourself and you’ll see.
I locate this 1.22 carat cushion cut diamond, that’s absolute eye-candy:
|CARAT, CLARITY, COLOR, POL, SYM, FLUOR||PRICE||VIEW|
|1.22, VS2, D, VG, VG, NONE||$8,130||VIEW|
The price of this diamond is $8,130
Which is amazing. A round diamond of the same quality would jump the price $2,000+.
I select this diamond and add it to my cart.
Once done, you’ll be presented with a screenshot that says “Congratulations: Here is your design.”
This screen will give you both the mounting and the diamond, as well as the combined carat weights, and the total price.
Now log in or create an account:
Log in if you already have an account, create a new account, or use Facebook or Google . Creating an account is easy.
Create an account with James Allen:
The process is simple; input your name, email address (also considering if she would see these confirmation emails, or if you would like it sent somewhere else). Create a password, then continue…
Once that’s created, you’ll see this:
Your account is where your orders will be, details, services, wish list… (and you can sign up for their mailing list as well (at the bottom), just remember, your girlfriend may see these emails too, so make sure that you create a secret one with Google or Yahoo – they’re free).
And, to make things better…
If you sign up for their mailing list, you’ll save $100 on your first purchase (of $1,000 or more–cannot be combined with any other offer).
Now you can proceed with your checkout:
Preview your order, select your ring size (default is 6), and any inscription or engraving inside the ring (all my heart; love you always; R&T; 6-1-2019; whatever you desire–do note there will be a $25 re-polishing fee if an engraved item is returned).
Now all that’s left is to pay:
James Allen gives you many convenient ways to pay: Paypal, Credit Card; Visa, American Express, Mastercard, Discover; you can also do a wire transfer with saves you an additional 1.5% off the total price. They also offer special financing options too:
These options include 6 months deferred interest, or 9.9% APR on 24 months. You decide.
Just read all of the details and disclaimers before making up your mind. Plans are subject to credit approval, and some restrictions apply (see website for details).
Lastly, you can also pay in 3 interest free installments with Visa or Mastercard. That’s cool!
After that, shipping and billing (do understand that someone will have to be there to sign for such an expensive, insured package – you could always have it sent to your work, or a friend or family member if you like).
Fill out the info, and also select if you’d like the price to be put on the receipt or not (some people don’t want her knowing how much they spent):
Insert your payment details:
Then finally review and confirm your order:
It’s all pretty straight forward. You order with ease (and anytime you like; 3am in the morning with your bathrobe and slippers)…
And with that:
I placed my order.
A week later the package arrived (they had to set the stone in the ring; this process takes anywhere from 1 to 3 weeks depending on the mounting you choose).
To my surprise it came in a very sturdy generic white box that gave nothing away. Even the shipping address just said R2NET INC. (from New York), so if she does see this, she’ll still have no clue what it is. Just tell her that you ordered a bunch of Blu-ray movies off Ebay (and buy ones to show her so you raise no suspicions).
I opened the package, and wrapped in foam, was this presentation box:
And once you lift that lid, all you see is the ring box. What an elegant display. Quite dramatic and bold.
(At this point I felt like a kid in a candy store.)
On the bottom of the presentation box was a drawer, that is where they hide all the paperwork (and a free polishing cloth).
They give you paperwork for everything.
- A diamond report
- A copy of your receipt (mine shows no prices)
- A full appraisal (this ring was valued at $13,000)
- A coupon for 10% off wedding bands (very smart)
- A refer a friend reward (save money or get FREE gift cards)
- A lifetime warranty
- An inspection sheet (thanks Kate!)
Now onto the good part… THE RING!
I lift the lid…
Now that’s a “WOW” moment!
It’s so stunning…
The diamond is HUGE (anything over one full carat is considered large), the mounting exquisite, they look perfect together… What a compliment. I’m in love with the sparkle and bling. I really adore halo mountings…
You can easily get lost in the dazzle:
The diamond is so clean and beautiful. I loupe it and am in awe. I only see a few tiny pinpoints…
I look at the GIA diamond report:
The only flaws in this VS2 diamond were these:
They’re so insignificant and microscopic.
This is why I recommend VS quality (even if you have to go smaller in carat weight), the brilliance is breathtaking. I’m highly impressed. Clean diamonds like this (SI1 or higher), with a pure-white color, great cut, and certified by GIA… is beyond anything you’ll ever see or experience.
A jaw-dropper for sure.
And to get this entire setup for ten grand is outstanding (just make sure you get this ring insured, put it on your homeowners policy, or inquire with Jeweler’s Mutual; they partner with James Allen to make it a breeze).
It’s the Ultimate Engagement Ring.
What a wonderful experience this review has been.
From start to finish, James Allen makes the perfect ring possible.
And that’s the entire ordering process… Plus, you get to design your own ring; pick your own diamond, choose your setting, and all that’s left is to propose.
So if you ever wanted to see what was involved, I hope this helps you a lot.
And if you want to return your ring (as I did, because this was just a review), then contact them to request a return slip. That’s easy too (and a 100% money back guarantee).
See their entire return policy below:
So what are you waiting for?
Head on over to James Allen today, and order your one-of-a-kind engagement ring.
It’s the best way to say “I DO!”