Everybody, at some point in their life, is in the market for Jewelry. Whether its for an engagement, or just wanting to buy a gift for somebody. Walking into a jewelry store can be a lot to take in, especially if you don’t really know what to look for. If you need some help then keep reading and I’ll lay out my top 10 jewelry buying tips.
1) Decide on YOUR budget
The sales people will ask you questions in order to find out how firm your budget is. And if your budget is not high enough they will offer you their “financing”. See next tip for that advice. Stick to your budget. Their job is to sell you more, not to sell you what you need. Have a plan and stick too it. They are good at making you feel good and happy. It’s all a trick. Trust me, I have witnessed this thousands of times.
2) Do Not sign up for their credit card
If you budget does not allow for the size stone you want then do not get their credit card. Their financing is a trap. If you buy THEIR card then you will continue to come back to THEIR store even after you pay off your card. Even if there is a better deal at another store. if you can get zero interest and pay it off in time then cancel it when the last payment is sent. The hit to your credit is not as bad as they make it out to be.
3) Do get the protection plan if it is reasonably priced
I have worked in a busy retail jewelry store and have repaired thousands of rings. It is in your best interest to get the plan that covers repairs. Jewelry breaks all the time. Diamonds fall out, diamonds can even break or crack. You may need to get your ring sized later and most stores wont do that for free after the fact unless you buy thier plan. One other note, there is no such thing as white gold. Gold is yellow. Alloy’s are added to the yellow gold to make it look lighter and then a thin layer of Rhodium is electro plated to the surface of the piece to give it that mirror finish. That will wear off and your white gold ring will look dull. So, please get the protection plan, its well worth it.
4) Silver has much more upkeep than gold
Silver jewelry, especially rings break 10-1 of gold jewelry. Gold is a much better metal. It is stronger, does not tarnish, and wears away much slower. Yes, precious metals do wear away the more you wear them. Some more than others. Silver is an extremely soft metal, therefor it wears extremely fast. Get gold if you can afford to.
5) Be prepared to walk away
Jewelry sales people can be extremely high pressure. They will raise your emotional level, get you all excited, then drop the hammer. Be prepared to walk away. Their job is to close the sale. They will make you feel like a dog for not buying this piece if they can. There best interest and yours do not match. Just walk away if you have second thoughts or you don’t feel comfortable.
6) Don’t let them talk you into something
Their job is to close a sale. Typically they make very little money or none at all if you dont buy something. So they may scramble to show you anything and evverything under the son. Don’t take the bait. If you dont see something you like, then just walk away.
7) Do buy natural stones
Sometimes they will show you rings with stones other than natural. They may be synthetic or imitation. Here is the difference. Imitation stones are the cheapest. They are made to have the appearance of the natural stone but nothing else. They are a cheap knockoff. Synthetic stones are also a man made materal but they share the same structure as a natural stone. They were just created in a lab. They are slightly more than imitation stones. Then there are natural stones. Some of these stones can be heat treated but that’s a whole other article. Natural stones hold their value much better and they have a better resell value. Natural stones just make for a nicer piece. Obviously this option is the most expensive but in my opinion, it is the only way to go.
8) Name brands are nothing more than that
Just because a piece has a brand name on it that does not mean it is a quality piece. I’ve fixed pieces from some of the most notable brands and I can tell you that an expensive price tag doesn’t always represent reliability.
9) Do not buy laser enhanced diamonds
Laser enhanced diamonds are diamonds that have a tiny hole drilled in them with a laser and chemicals are used to make dark inclusions less visible. Then a lot of the times a glass like resin is used to fill in the voids this caused. The diamonds look better with the naked eye but structurally they may be a bit more unstable. Some jewelers will not work on these type of diamonds because of the increased risk of breaking them.
10) You get what you pay for
As with a lot of things jewelry is no different. I know in an earlier paragraph I mentioned that paying more money doesn’t always represent quality but there is a certain level of quality you get with a certain budget, generally speaking. Technology now days has been able to produce some nice “looking” pieces but the quality is lacking. The metal is thinner and the construction is all for looks and not for support. Those pieces will look great for a few days to a month or so but then quickly start looking dull or even worse, falls apart.