Can your diamond crack and shatter?
You probably landed on this webpage because you were searching for information related to “cracked diamonds” or “what to do after chipping a diamond” in the search engines.
My guess is that you are freaking out after dropping your diamond ring or hitting your engagement ring against something hard like a wall. Well, let me calm you down by saying that it is relatively difficult for a diamond to get damaged in an accidental knock.
In fact, what you think you are seeing as a problem in your ring may actually have nothing to do with cracks or a chipped diamond.
In this article, I will answer some of the frequent questions that readers ask when they get into an “accident” with their engagement ring. I’ll also show you how a cracked diamond looks like in real life and address common “problems” that might be mistaken for a crack.
Within weeks of purchasing or receiving their first piece of diamond jewelry, there’s always this group of people who start to get paranoid and worry about having a damaged diamond. Do you know what’s the main reason behind this phenomenon?
Well, that’s because these people don’t fully understand or inspect their jewelry in detail before making a purchase. Based on my interactions with readers and shoppers, most people only start to see details they never noticed before because they had plenty of time to scrutinize their jewelry after owning it.
Instead, the questions only arise after they looked at their jewelry for a lengthy period of time and they start noticing stuff like girdle reflections or feather inclusions which had always been there all along.
(And this perplexes me, don’t you think it’s a little too late to be asking those questions now instead of understanding your purchase completely before buying?)
People often mistake a diamond to be cracked when they see a whitish looking line running through the diamond. Instead, the culprit behind this is due to a dirty diamond that has a concentrated layer of built-up grime.
You see, throughout the course of the day, a diamond ring worn on your hand will inevitably come into contact with external matter (e.g. hand soap, water, your fingers etc…) and slowly accumulate grime.
Initially, this layer of muck may look like a thin layer of dirt or a patch of oil stain. Overtime, the gunk accumulates and become so thick that it appears like a thick white line across the diamond’s facets. Depending on where the gunk is built up, it can be mistaken as a crack or a sign of physical damage to the stone.
As the diamond’s surface becomes dirtier, the stone will begin to look dull and lifeless. In turn, some of the inclusions that were previously masked by the stone’s brilliance and scintillation will now become more obvious. This could trick your eyes into believing that new flaws had developed when they had been there all along.
By cleaning your diamond and removing a good deal of the grime, you will easily restore the stone to its initial condition. All you need is a soft brush and a small amount of detergent to get the job done.
If your ring setting has corners which are difficult to reach with a bristle brush, you might want to consider using an ultrasonic cleaner or bring it back to the jeweler for professional steam cleaning.
In truth, diamonds are rather hard to break. In order for you to cause a crack in the stone, you will have to apply the right amount of force at the correct angle along its cleavage plane.
Feathers (aka cracks) that extend to the surface of pavilion facets.
There is also a direct relationship between the quality of the diamond and its “breakability”. A diamond with low clarity grade and a poor cut grade (crowns that are too shallow or extremely thin girdle thickness) will be more susceptible to damage when subjected to external forces.
From a mechanical view of the crystalline structure, severely included diamonds have weaker integrity due to the presence of defects and foreign materials. This is why you always need to inspect the diamond carefully before making a purchase.
This I1 emerald cut runs a high risk of breakage due to the big feather inclusion (crack) it has.
Generally speaking, the saying “you get what you paid for” applies tenfold in the diamond industry. If you behave like a cheapo with unrealistic expectations like buying a 2 carat diamond for $2,000, you can expect to get ripped off and receive an industrial grade diamond.
By paying more for quality and shopping smartly, you indirectly buy yourself a better looking diamond that offers long-long years of durability and enjoyment.