Certified Diamond – Yes, but GIA or IGI?

I get this question a lot and the short answer to this is buy a GIA certified diamond.

A diamond certificate is an expert third party opinion. It states the quality of every aspect of a diamond. Without this certification you are left to trust the jeweller’s grading. This can cause a potential conflict because the jeweller is the one selling you the diamond. A certified diamond will have the certificate number laser inscribed on the diamond so you can verify the authenticity.

I am not going to discuss certification from other laboratories because, frankly speaking, there are lot of other labs and institutes offering diamond grading services but there is so much variation and discrepancy that a VS1 graded diamond in GIA might be graded VVS1 by some other lab. So, I recommend considering the two most consistent and popular ones – GIA (Gemological Institute of America) and IGI (International Gemological Institute).

GIA Report – Loose Diamond
IGI Report – Jewellery

Now, how to choose between the two? Just to give you an idea – generally, the IGI grade is half to one grade better than a GIA grade. So, a VS1 grade in GIA might be a VVS2 grade in IGI or a G color in GIA might be F color in IGI. In other words, GIA has stricter grading standards than IGI. Hence, IGI certified diamonds are about 7-8% cheaper than GIA certified diamonds with the same specifications. GIA is considered the industry standard for loose solitaire diamonds above 0.18 carats and it’s grading standards are more consistent than IGI. Also, if you cannot judge a diamond’s quality yourself, you are better off buying a GIA certified diamond.

However, it doesn’t mean that you should never buy IGI certified diamonds. If you are buying a very high color or clarity like F VS1, it would be better to buy a GIA certified diamond. However, if you are planning to buy slightly lower quality, say a I color or SI1, you can consider buying IGI certified since you will save a bit of money without compromising much on quality. Also, if you are buying smaller diamonds under 0.18 carat and more than one piece, you should buy IGI certified (usually diamonds in smaller sizes are sold without any certification). IGI is the leading and the best laboratory for grading of studded diamond jewellery – there are a lot of dubious laboratories used by jewellery retailers, however these cannot be trusted at all. There is a huge difference in the grading standards for diamond jewellery between IGI and others. IGI has the technology to test for natural diamonds and this test is carried out even for studded diamond jewellery. So, in short, buy diamond jewellery graded by IGI and you can be assured of the authenticity of diamond quality.


Visit Sarvada Jewels to buy GIA/IGI certified diamonds and IGI certified diamond jewellery at 40% discount on retail prices! Talk to Diamond Experts to choose the perfect diamond so you get the best value for money!

I will be happy to answer any questions, please post in the comments below.

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