labgrown diamond Tempe

The 5 ways to tell if your diamond is real

Ok so it’s actually more than 5. When we started we had 5 in mind, but the more we wrote, the more things we came up with. You win!

Coveted for their rarity and beauty, diamonds are best known around the world for their sparkle, fire, and brilliance. Used for centuries in engagement rings, diamonds are iconic representations of love. But looks can be deceiving—there are many crystals out there that look very similar to diamonds but without the quality and durability of the real thing.

By just looking at a diamond or a crystal, it’s nearly impossible to tell if it is real or fake. Imitation diamonds, like cubic zirconia or zircon, oftentimes look nearly identical to actual diamonds—despite the fact that they are composed of totally different materials. But there are a few tips and tricks that will help you determine whether or not your stone is the real thing.

Learn more about how to tell if a diamond is real or fake, and test your own gemstones right at home.

1. In water, diamonds sink.

As the hardest gemstone known to man, diamonds are also extremely dense. This makes them durable and great for everyday wear but also makes them heavy. Because of their weight and density, diamonds sink when they’re dropped into a glass of water. Unlike diamonds, crystals are not nearly as dense. That means they tend to float just under the surface of the water or halfway in the glass.

To test your own stone, fill a glass of water. Drop the stone into the glass—if it sinks, you’ll know your diamond is real, but if it floats it means it’s an imitation. 

2. Diamonds don’t shatter when exposed to high heats.

Because it takes millions of years to form diamonds below the earth’s surface, they are exposed to massive amounts of heat and high pressure. As a result, diamonds are incredibly durable and aren’t susceptible to damage from high heat. Fake diamonds, on the other hand, cannot handle heat nearly as well because they are made of weaker materials.

To test the authenticity of your diamond, heat it with a flame—like a lighter—for 30 to 45 seconds. Be sure to hold the stone with tweezers or another tool to protect your hand. Once it’s heated, drop the stone into a glass of cool water. Real diamonds will simply fall to the bottom, while less durable, fake diamonds will shatter.

3. All diamonds have small, natural imperfections.

Because diamonds are naturally occurring, they all have some imperfections that were created as they formed in the earth. Alternately, man-made crystals are made to be perfectly smooth on both the inside and outside. That means they don’t have imperfections, known as inclusions, like real diamonds.

To tell the difference take a magnifying glass and inspect your gemstone. In good lighting, you should be able to see tiny imperfections throughout the stone if the diamond is real. If you don’t see any imperfections, it likely means that the diamond is not real.


4. Real diamonds turn blue under a black light.

If you have access to a black light, you can tell if a diamond is real very quickly. In a dark room, turn on the black light and hold up your stone. A large percentage of real diamonds turn a shade of blue under UV lighting because of the minerals inside the stone. Fake diamonds, on the other hand, will light a yellow, grey, or green shade. This drastic difference in fluorescence makes it easy to tell the difference between a real or fake stone.

5. Real diamonds don’t fog up as long.

If you take the stone and breath on it—whether it’s real or fake—it will fog up, just like a mirror. The difference, however, is in how long the fog lasts on the stone’s surface. With real diamonds, the fog will disappear quickly because diamonds conduct heat. This heat ensures that the moisture doesn’t stay on the surface long. Fake diamonds, however, can’t conduct heat so they will stay fogged up for several seconds. If you notice that the fog is long-lasting, it’s possible that the stone is fake.

6. What does it mean if a gem turns brown, then maybe green or yellow during the test?

When a gemstone undergoes a color change from brown to possibly green or yellow during the testing process, it typically indicates that the gem in question is a moissanite.

Diamond in the rough Phoenix

7. Which other gems have low or no heat sensitivity and may survive the test?

Several other gems have low or no heat sensitivity and may potentially survive the test. While the gem shattering indicates it is not a diamond, it could be cubic zirconia or glass. However, it’s important to note that this test alone cannot provide conclusive evidence that a surviving gem is a diamond. Gems such as moissanite, white sapphire, white topaz, white spinel, YAG (yttrium aluminum garnet), and GGG (gadolinium gallium garnet) are known to have low or no heat sensitivity and could potentially remain intact during this test.

8. What do the results of the scratch test indicate?

The scratch test is a method commonly used to determine how hard a material is. This test involves using a known gemstone or material with a known hardness to scratch the surface of the material being tested. The results, from this test can provide insights into the hardness of the tested material.

If the gemstone or material with a known hardness doesn’t leave any scratches on the tested material it suggests that the tested material is softer than the gemstone. For instance if we use quartz crystal for the test and it doesn’t leave any scratches it indicates that the tested material is probably not as hard as quartz. In cases there’s a possibility that it could be glass or another substance with a level of hardness.

On the hand if scratches are left on the tested material by the gemstone or material with a known hardness it suggests that its hardness is equal to or greater than that of the gemstone. This opens up possibilities, for identifying what kind of material it might be. While scratching quartz may indicate that it could be one of imitations scratching low grade corundum (sapphire) provides more specific information.
If a material is capable of scratching corundum it indicates that it could potentially be diamond, moissanite or white sapphire. All of which possess a level of hardness.

It’s worth noting that the scratch test is considered destructive meaning it has the potential to cause damage, to the gem or material being examined. If one wishes to maintain the appeal of the material it would be wise to refrain from conducting this test.

9. How does the newspaper/dot test work in determining if a diamond is real?

The newspaper or dot test is commonly employed to determine the authenticity of a diamond. This method takes advantage of the properties of diamonds particularly their ability to refract light. To conduct this test you will require a newspaper or a piece of paper, with a dot drawn on it. It’s important to note that this test is suitable for diamonds and not ones that are already set in jewelry.

To perform the test place the diamond face down on top of the newspaper text or on the paper, with the drawn dot. Take a moment to observe whether you can still perceive the shape of the letters or the dot through the diamond.

The results obtained from this test can provide insights into determining if your diamond is genuine. If you can still discern the shape of the letters even if they seem distorted or wavy it is highly likely that your diamond is not authentic. This happens because diamonds have an ability to refract light causing any text or dot viewed through them to become unrecognizable. In fact there’s a possibility that you won’t be able to see the dot all when conducting this particular test.

Hence if you can easily see the shape of the letters or the dot when placing the diamond facedown on a newspaper or paper it’s probable that the gem is not a diamond. This test relies on how diamonds interact with light allowing people to differentiate between diamonds and fakes.

10. How can I determine if a diamond is lab-made or mined?

The best way to accurately differentiate between a diamond created in a lab and one that is mined is, by having it evaluated at a laboratory. These specialized facilities have the expertise, tools and methods required to examine the diamond in question. By conducting tests and assessments that involve analyzing its chemical properties studying its growth patterns and evaluating any distinctive characteristics the gemological laboratory can provide an accurate determination of whether the diamond was grown in a lab or naturally formed through mining.

11. What do the results of these tests actually mean?

Each of the tests mentioned above provides insights, into the gemstone under examination helping determine whether it is a diamond or a counterfeit. Here’s a detailed explanation of what each tests results signify;

1. Thermal Test; This test measures the gemstone’s ability to conduct heat. A diamond tester will only show results for diamonds and moissanite. So if your gemstone passes this test there’s a probability that it’s indeed a genuine diamond.

2. Facet Doubling; Diamonds have singular properties while many imitations exhibit refraction characteristics. When examining the stone if you notice facets that appear doubled or blurry it could indicate that the gemstone is moissanite, white zircon, white topaz, quartz or white sapphire—indicating it is not a diamond.

3. UV Fluorescence; This test involves using a blacklight to observe how the gemstone reacts. If the stone emits a glow, under the blacklight it is more likely to be a diamond. However, if it glows in a color or shows no reaction all chances are it’s an imitation.

4. Newspaper/Dot Test;
To observe the bending properties of a gemstone try placing it face down on a newspaper or a paper, with a dot. Diamonds have refraction, which can distort and make the shape of letters or dot unrecognizable. If you can still see the shape of the letters or the dot it’s likely that the gemstone is not a diamond.

Another test you can do is the fog test. This involves checking how long it takes for fog to clear from a diamond or moissanite. Usually, they should only remain foggy for a few seconds before clearing up. If the gemstone remains fogged up for a period there’s a chance that it’s an imitation.

It’s important to remember that while these tests can provide insights they are not foolproof. For an assessment of authenticity, it’s recommended to have your diamond professionally tested by a jeweler or, at a gemological laboratory.

Teardrop Diamond

In the process of searching for the right diamond for your engagement in Scottsdale, Phoenix, Tempe, or Paradise Valley?

When purchasing a diamond, you should never even have to question whether the stone is real or fake. At Finer Custom Engagement Rings and Diamonds, our diamonds are only the finest GIA-certified stones.

With a wide array of caratscolor, cuts, and clarity, there is a diamond that is perfect for every ring and every proposal.

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Have a diamond that needs to be checked, or looking for a certified diamond?

Yes, we pride ourselves on providing better quality and better prices than most traditional jewelers, but we know that it’s our customers’ experiences with us that tell the whole story. Take a look at our reviews below, and if you like what they have to say,  schedule a consultation with our team today either for picking out the perfect stone, or our specialty, designing your Custom Engagement Ring. If you’re ready, we look forward to hearing from you. 


Our Happy Customers

Finer Custom Jewelry
Based on 128 reviews
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Harmony GreenHarmony Green
23:13 01 Apr 24
Shimon is absolutely amazing at what he does and such a pleasure to work with. We had a custom wedding band made to complement my center stone and the design is quite unique. My fiancé was very apprehensive and worried about not going with a classic wedding band but we both couldn’t be happier with how it turned out! Going to be hard not to wear this for the next few months! 😅
Dylan KuchanDylan Kuchan
21:42 19 Mar 24
Shimon was absolutely amazing. He not only was professional and courteous, but was understanding of my questions and made my visits very easy. Would highly recommend his services at Finer Custom Jewelry.
Alana VAlana V
22:15 18 Mar 24
We had a wonderful experience creating a custom engagment ring with Shimon. Shimon took the time to truly show us our options and helped shape our vision throughout the process.Shimon did a phenomenal job finding the perfect unique stone including similar stone options so we felt confident in our choice. It was such a fun process exploring our options and designing the perfect ring. Shimon is truly a master of his craft!
Ena DuriezEna Duriez
19:48 18 Mar 24
I absolutely love their jewelry, they have beautiful pieces. Highly recommend 👍
Monica J HairMonica J Hair
19:50 15 Mar 24
I had a custom bracelet made by Shimon and his team. From start to finish the process couldn’t have been more seamless. Genuinely a pleasure to work with Finer Custom Jewelry
Steven TocciSteven Tocci
02:32 07 Mar 24
Just got a new watch and needed a link removed. I found this store on Google and decided to stop in and see if they could help. Shimon doesn’t typically do watches, but he didn’t hesitate to stop what he was doing to help me. He took the time out of his day to help me and wouldn’t accept any payment. You can tell he takes extreme pride in his work and he will do whatever it takes to help his customers. I will absolutely be coming back and using him in the future!
Pamela SpearsPamela Spears
21:21 12 Feb 24
Shimon was very helpful, grand place finer jewelry sales. Would definitely recommend to everyone. Will definitely be back to this location
John HuntJohn Hunt
17:59 23 Jan 24
Great experience! Shimon helped me get a salt & pepper engagement ring. He understood exactly what I was looking for and the finished product greatly exceeded my expectations. Highly recommended!!
Sara TurnbullSara Turnbull
22:30 22 Jan 24
Shimon cleaned my wedding ring for me and made it look better than new. I couldn’t stop looking at it in the sun! I had forgotten its potential to shine like that. And Monica was a great help as well, they have an amazing and dedicated team 💍
01:24 05 Jan 24
My fiancé and I cannot say enough about Shimon and Finer Custom Jewelry. I had an heirloom ring from my mom, and two bands that I wanted to use to create a very specific ring, the ring of my dreams. After a lot of research, we found Shimon. Throughout the entire process, he was incredible. From our very first meeting where we went over my vision, to the final product. I feel so lucky to have found such a caring and talented jeweler. You can tell he takes such pride in his work, as he should because it is truly flawless. I would recommend Shimon to anyone I know. We are so thankful to have him to make our forever ring so incredibly special. It exceeded all our expectations and then some.
Laura VargasLaura Vargas
20:26 30 Dec 23
My fiance and I had a fantastic experience going through Finer Custom Jewelry for our wedding bands. Shimon and Monica both worked to create our dream rings within our budget. Would definitely recommend if you are looking for affordable, high quality, fast, and wonderful service.
Jacquie LymanJacquie Lyman
04:17 28 Dec 23
10/10 would recommend Finer Jewelery! I needed a repair on my wedding ring, and also wanted my engagement ring and wedding band soldered together. The service was incredible and the communication was as promised. Shimon is so kind and warm and friendly! My ring came back looking brand new!
Paige DimakosPaige Dimakos
23:15 04 Oct 23
Wonderful experience and customer service. Look forward to working with Shimon in the future.
Homa NikoHoma Niko
22:23 26 Sep 23
It was very nice meeting Shimon, he was very helpful on pricing my sister's ring. Very understanding and knowledgeable on jewelry. Thank you so much Shimon.
Kyle RootKyle Root
20:13 21 Sep 23
Shimon is a great guy super knowledgeable and I will definitely be coming to him again for my jewelry needs.
Lauren Van GyselLauren Van Gysel
18:18 18 Sep 23
Shimone was SO helpful and accommodating when I was selling jewelry! 10/10 experience and will be back!! :)
Roman MendezRoman Mendez
22:55 06 Sep 23
Great place. Shimon really helped me get a great offer on my diamond bracelet
Matthew RamirezMatthew Ramirez
18:25 01 Sep 23
Shimone was a pleasure to work with. He was both reasonable and fair when it came to selling a ring that I had been sitting on for a while. I would highly recommend Finer Custom Jewelry if you’re looking to sell any pieces. Shimone will treat you well.
denise drakedenise drake
22:23 29 Aug 23
Great experience working with Shimon. He had expert ideas about how to manage some antique jewelry and was super and helping us find the right rings!
Pure Air Service AZPure Air Service AZ
18:36 29 Aug 23
Thank you Shimon for your patience with me.I called finer custom jewelry to find a diamond ring to Propose my girlfriend and Shimon was really helpful and profesional.Really recommend.She said yessssss 😊
17:17 29 Aug 23
This place is absolutely amazing. The Jeweler Shimon did a wonderful job when pricing and inspecting the jewelry I brought in for sale. Extremely knowledgeable and very personable. recommend everyone comes here!!
Shelby KarrelsShelby Karrels
23:14 21 Aug 23
My experience with Finer Curation Jewelry was nothing short of phenomenal. Buying, selling, and creating custom jewelry can be a stressful and pressuring experience. However, from the moment I walked into Finer Custom Jewelry, I felt like a valued client. Shimon was patient, knowledgeable, and made the process so much easier than I had expected. If you are looking for a jeweler you can trust, you will find them here!
Sarah KanitschSarah Kanitsch
18:35 15 Aug 23
Amazing service! Helped immediately with the ring I had. Wonderful guy!!
Shane CsiszarShane Csiszar
23:49 07 Aug 23
Shimon was a pleasure to work with! Made the process very easy and enjoyable. We picked a beautiful emerald diamond, and I could not be happier with the quality of his work! I highly recommend Finer Jewelry!
Lauryn ScusselLauryn Scussel
03:27 20 Jul 23
Thanks to Shimon I was able to give my mom her dream Mother’s ring. It was done quickly and efficiently with great communication and a stunning product. A great company for your custom jewelry needs!!
Ryan BerryRyan Berry
17:19 11 Jul 23
Shimon was great to work with. We made a custom ring exactly how I drew it and my fianceé loved it. Will definitely come back for my ring!
Lisa HilchieLisa Hilchie
20:37 09 Jul 23
Shimon was very kind and professional. He responded quickly to my initial email, worked with my schedule to make an appointment, and took the time to answer any questions I had. I'm very happy with my decision to go to him.
Eli Garcia (ELI)Eli Garcia (ELI)
18:32 26 Jun 23
Ring came out perfect my Fiancé loved it, it fit perfect, I’d highly recommend this jeweler, also Shimon was very communicative and gave updates on the ring every chance he had, couldn’t have had a better experience.
Michael NedlerMichael Nedler
00:17 19 Jun 23
I had a big wedding anniversary coming and wanted to do something special for my wife. A friend suggested Finer so I contacted them. What a wonderful experience...Shimon led me through the process of picking an amazing diamonds as well as the perfect ring. My wife couldn't have been happier and I felt like a hero. I feel like a got an incredible ring for the money and will be back for the next occasion!
Arianna DohertyArianna Doherty
16:51 14 Jun 23
I needed to get two rings appraised and the process was easy and convenient. Shimon was able to meet with me the same week and got me the written appraisals within 3 days. I did not need to leave the items with him as some other jewelers require. I'm very pleased with the ease of working with Shimon.
Kayla ThurberKayla Thurber
02:32 16 Mar 23
I would give Shimon at Finer Custom Jewelry 10 stars if I could! He created an entirely custom ring for my fiancé just based on one Google image photo that she provided me. Before working with Shimon, I assumed I would not be able to afford a custom ring, but I was able to choose everything for the ring and stay perfectly within my budget. It was a very personal experience to create this ring and I felt heard by Shimon the entire time. (He even texted me to congratulate me on my engagement!) And he produced the most wonderful, amazing ring that will last for a lifetime! One final note: as a woman proposing to another woman, I was nervous to be judged when purchasing a non-traditional engagement ring. Shimon made me feel SO comfortable and validated. I could not recommend his services enough.
Daniel GoldbergDaniel Goldberg
00:55 03 Mar 23
My entire experience with Shimon was incredible start to finish. I came in with just an idea of what I wanted for an engagement ring. He took the time to explain the different options, settings and styles that would match my idea. Needless to say, the ring turned out beautifully and she loved it. Most importantly, Shimon was honest and fair. We will definitely be going back for all of our future needs.
Sarah RisiSarah Risi
18:47 14 Feb 23
Shimon helped me elevate my engagement diamond to a beautiful channel set band with my birthstone sapphires. I couldn’t be happier with the quality of his work!
Kyle BelskiKyle Belski
23:50 07 Feb 23
Shimon is the man! He took the time to help us design my fiancé’s ring just the way she wanted it. She now gets compliments on her ring on a daily basis. Shimon also got us a high quality diamond at a more than fair price. I recommend Finer Jewelry for all of your jewelry needs!
Aalia FuellerAalia Fueller
19:49 07 Feb 23
I’ve been working with Shimon for a year. I had all my mother’s diamonds reset. He helped me recreate a ring setting that joined my mom and dads diamonds so I have them with me at all times. He repaired many pieces and restrung my mom’s pearls. He’s a true professional and an amazing person. He and his wife have created an awesome business.If you want to design your own piece or buy one, Finer Jewelry is the place to go!
Lena GonzalezLena Gonzalez
17:10 25 Jun 22
Thank you to Shimon for this amazing diamond ring!! If you’re struggling looking for a jeweler in Arizona, you have to choose Finer Jewelry! He was very attentive to what I wanted and made me feel listened to throughout the entire process. He was truly a pleasure to work with, I could not recommend him enough!
Dania KassabDania Kassab
18:43 09 Jun 22
I’ve been looking for a yellow diamond ring for a while now and I’m so glad I foundation Finer Jewelry!!! Shimon showed me a variety of diamonds and made sure I was in love with the specific stone and shade of the diamond. Shimon made sure to educate me on my purchase which I really appreciated because I honestly didn’t know much about diamonds before meeting with him. I could not be more obsessed with this ring, so thank you so much Shimon for helping me find my dream ring!!!
Ashley BoldAshley Bold
07:24 29 Jan 22
If you are looking for a jeweler in the Scottsdale/Phoenix area, look no further. As we began shopping for an engagement ring we went to a number of different jewelers in the area but no one offered the same level of customer service as Shimon at Finer Jewelry! He was so helpful and caring throughout the entire process of designing my dream ring. I get so many compliments on my ring and it’s all thanks to Finer Jewelry!!
22:48 24 Dec 21
I was gifted diamonds from my mother and both grandmother’s wedding rings and I wanted to make my own wedding ring with them. I was able to schedule an appointment the following day and began working on the ring design. They were so thorough in making sure the fit and design was just right by making 3D imaging and wax molds for you to see before the ring is actually made. The whole process took about a month from start to finish and you can’t beat the price! I’m beyond happy with what they made for me. It’s truly something special.
18:36 14 Dec 21
After sharing our diamond CCC wish list with Shimon we sat back and waited. Shimon took us seriously and carefully watched the exchanges for "our stone". He found us a nearly flawless diamond that presented 30% larger than its weight! We then asked Shimon to craft a setting that required specially cut supplemental diamonds. Shimon's relationships with diamond cutters and his goldsmith made it possible for him to deliver our dream setting with our own "hope" diamond! Shimon is personable, very fun to work with and completely transparent. He and his stones are priceless!
Deanna HuntDeanna Hunt
17:35 04 Nov 21
Amazing experience. My favorite diamond jeweler in Scottsdale. A custom experience, fair prices, honest, top quality. What more can I say!
Candace HagermanCandace Hagerman
00:03 08 Sep 21
Shimon did an amazing job understanding what I wanted in my ring. After picking out my main stone he found two that perfectly coordinated. It turned out so much more than I hoped. Will definitely recommend and return.
Robbie BurtonRobbie Burton
23:20 03 Aug 21
I found the staff to be more than happy to assist in the design and creation of a true family heirloom. The process of collaboration with this jeweler was such a joy. Me and my family will treasure this for a lifetime. Thank you so much. A truly happy customer.