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Do they really have the world’s most “perfectly” cut diamond?
At some point in time, you would have probably heard of the slogan “The World’s Most Perfectly Cut Diamond” either through mass media advertising or big banner boards.
Just like how Tiffany & Co created the iconic blue box to associate prestige in the minds of consumers, Hearts On Fire has also created a strong branding whereby customers are willing to pay a lot more for their products over other unbranded jewelry.
With their successful branding, they had become one of the more prominent and profitable retail jewelry business in recent times. In this review, I’m going to share my personal opinions and first hand experiences of Hearts On Fire with you.
The first thing that caught my attention when I stumbled upon Hearts on Fire diamonds was the perfect name. Whether you are familiar with the world of diamonds or not, the name invokes positive emotions.
Both words in the company’s name, “hearts” and “fire” give people a positive feeling and are associated with warmth and love. If you know just a bit more about diamonds, you will probably realize that this name is also neatly connected in a few ways.
First, the structure “hearts on…” is a clever play with one of the most well-known optical characteristics found in a standard round brilliant cut, “hearts and arrows”.
Secondly, fire – or dispersion – is also one of the most important characteristics which give a diamond its beautiful sparkle and brilliance. And we didn’t even mention that people usually buy engagement rings when their hearts are on fire!
The company wants you to believe their product is unique but it really isn’t. The truth is that HoF diamonds are nothing more than the standard 57 facets round brilliant cut any other vendor can also offer.
When a round diamond is cut to ideal proportions and precise craftsmanship, a phenomenon of hearts and arrows can be seen through the diamond’s crown and pavilion using a special viewer.
Well, the real answer is NO. It isn’t. But they try to make you think it is with the use of clever marketing strategies. If you visit the official Hearts On Fire website and spend some time reading through it, you will realize that their “signature” diamond is nothing more than a standard 57 facets round brilliant cut.
I have proof to back this up too. Check out the AGS report for a Hearts On Fire diamond below…
Supposedly “exclusive” cut is none other than a traditional round brilliant cut.
Even the grading labs labeled it as such. Why would HoF try to tell you otherwise?
In a market so abundant and maybe even bloated with round cut diamonds, how does Hearts on Fire try to stand out from the crowd? how does Hearts on Fire try to stand out from the crowd? Well, I had some answers after visiting my local retailer. What was touted to me during a store visit was the use of “superlative” polishing in HoF stones.
“Using super high tech anti-vibration technology on the cutting wheel and a secret formula (that no one else presumably has in the world), they are able to create the world’s most perfectly cut hearts and arrows diamond. The finishing of their stones is graded at 100X magnification. That’s TEN TIMES the industry standard of grading diamonds!”
With clever marketing, HoF tries to package everything in a manner to make you believe there is some secret recipe (stated on their official site) invented by a scientist who slaved away his life in the lab. For the record, creating perfectly cut hearts and arrows diamonds isn’t something new or unique to Hearts On Fire.
In fact, the Japanese pioneered the cut during the 80’s and the person who made H&A gain traction is a man called Brian Gavin. Also, the cutting method that is used to create the hearts and arrows patterning is openly shared in the public domain. If you are interested to find out more, click here.
What about the superlative polish at 100X? Wow! That’s like 10 times better than what other people are doing. Really? Let me ask you some practical questions.
The truth is, no human eye can tell the difference between a light ray passing through a facet polished to ideal standards at 10X and another one that is polished to “superlative” standards at 100X.
Trying to stand out from the crowd by focusing on a feature like ‘superlative’ polish doesn’t add aesthetic value to my eyes (as well as towards my ASET/Idealscope’s). It does however, adds a superlative premium to the price tag.
In order to judge the light performance and optics of Hearts On Fire diamonds with objectivity, we made use of the Idealscope and discovered some surprising results. On the next page, find out whether they really hold up as the most well cut diamonds on Earth…
The Idealscope is a handy little tool that reveals how much light is returned by a diamond. The concept behind it is simple; the more light that is returned and reflected by the stone, the better the brilliance and scintillation.
For people who aren’t familiar with this tool, read my tutorial on analyzing the optics of a diamond using the Idealscope. In essence, we want to see lots of reds (indicates light return) and lesser amounts of white (indicates light leakage).
At my local HoF retailer, I had the opportunity to examine more than 10 diamonds of various sizes in both loose and mounted settings.
When viewed through tools like the ASET or Idealscope, the Hearts on Fire diamonds showed a varying level of light performance. Some appeared to have slight leakage under the table facet while some show perfect reds under the scope. So, what does this mean to the consumer? Well, the onus is on you to pick out the cream of the crop yourself.
HoF is a line of branded diamonds that is definitely one of the best out there in the market today. Having seen and inspected jewelry at many other big brands like Tiffany & Co, Cartier and Harry Winston, I would say that the level of cut quality exhibited at HoF tops my personal list amongst the international brands.
Yep, I said that. Even though Hearts On Fire diamonds are significantly more expensive (with all the marketing hype and stuff) than unbranded diamonds of similar quality, they still deliver diamonds that have high standards in cut precision.
HoF’s in-house diamond identity document. Note the use of “superlative” terms.
For people who are willing to pay an insane premium for branded diamonds or want to overpay just for the feel good factor, Hearts On Fire is my recommended choice for overpriced jewelry. If you are interested, you can check out their website for a list of retailers near your location.
Just remember to bring along an Idealscope to help you select the diamonds.
Hearts on Fire diamonds are priced with a high premium.
Did you know that you can get a diamond of similar or better quality at significantly lower prices? The comparisons of different online vendors against Hearts on Fire on the next page will blow you away, literally.
While there is no doubt that Hearts on Fire diamonds are beautiful and have great optical performance, the premium and costs that come attached to them are grossly inflated. And this brings to us the question of whether they are worth it for their price points.
When it all boils down to it, Hearts On Fire diamonds are simply AGS triple ‘0’s ideal cut rounds with good optical symmetry. My personal advice is not to get caught up in the marketing hype seen in the form of television advertisements and mass media marketing campaigns. As a savvy shopper, there are other alternatives where you can purchase a better or comparable super ideal cut diamond at much lower prices.
This is a listing extracted from Reeds.com, an authorized dealer of HoF…
For a 0.578 carat diamond with J color and SI1 clarity, the HoF ring commands a hefty price of $4,900 (inclusive of setting). Note: a J colored stone will show up with a slight nuance of yellow in it.
Did You Know That Hearts On Fire Has An Online Store?
Personally, I would stay away from it. Why? If you decide to purchase an engagement ring with a “sensational quality center diamond”, you are not allowed to cherry pick your diamond. Instead, you buy the ring knowing that the diamond is guaranteed to fall with the range of “G-I color” and “VS1-SI1 clarity”.
Read this guideline given on their website to find out more…
Definitely Not a Good Idea to Make a Huge Purchase Like This.
It is basically a roll of the dice where you have no control over your purchase. Obviously, there is a stark difference in value and costs between a G color VS1 diamond against an I color SI1 stone. What do you think you will probably end up with when you purchase the ring?
If you are insistent about buying a Hearts on Fire ring, the best way to go about selecting one is to head to the nearest dealer in your area. This will enable you to inspect diamonds in person and to cherry pick the higher quality ones.
From left to right: actual diamond, ASET, Idealscope and hearts patterning imagery.
In case you are wondering why there is a slew of images above, these are data that depict how well a diamond is cut. The ASET and Idealscope images reveal details on the diamond’s light performance and how well it reflects light. In layman’s terms, they tell us the overall brightness/contrast of the diamond and how much the diamond will sparkle.
Next, any jeweler who claims to be selling hearts and arrows diamonds must always show you the “evidence” to back up their claim. In this case, the online vendor, Brian Gavin, has made it really easy for consumers to assess the information. If you are in the physical store, always request to see the diamond through a viewer and inspect the symmetry of the hearts and arrows patterning carefully.
Comparing it with the Hearts on Fire diamond, the Brian Gavin diamond is better by 2 color grades and 1 clarity grade. Besides that, this Brian Gavin diamond is significantly larger with a weight of 0.838 carats. In all aspects of the 4Cs, the HoF diamond simply pales in comparison to the value it presents.
Now, if you were to add in a simple solitaire setting, the total cost of the diamond ring purchased at Brian Gavin would be:
$4,614 + $325 = $4,939
That’s almost the same price you had to pay for a 0.578 carat Hearts On Fire ring at Reeds! If you asked me, the disparity in prices and quality is HUGE! Why would you want to fork out $4,900 for a smaller, lower quality Hearts On Fire diamond when you can get something significantly cheaper and better at Brian Gavin?
For the next comparison, we are visiting JamesAllen.com. At the point of writing this review, there isn’t any J colored diamond with SI1 clarity that has a carat weight close to 0.58 for us to do an apple to apple comparison. Instead, we found a slightly larger stone that weighs 0.72 carats for this analysis.
0.72 Carat – J Color – SI1 James Allen TrueHearts Signature
Great looking Idealscope image and hearts patterning of the diamond
At a price point of $2,480 for the loose diamond, it is obvious that there is a stark difference in pricing compared to the Hearts on Fire stone. Mind you, this diamond is way larger and even after adding a simple 18k white gold solitaire setting that costs $400, the total is still $2,000 cheaper than the HoF ring!
Why pay the extra premium for something that isn’t necessarily better?
You can easily do the math to verify it yourself. In fact, if I were to purchase a similar True Hearts diamond that has a carat weight of 0.58, the total cost (inclusive of setting) would be less than half the price for the HoF ring at Reeds.
At the end of the day, there are no right or wrong answers as to where you want to purchase your diamond. You are the paying customer and you can choose how to spend your money. For people who love the branding and are totally averse to online purchases, heading to an authorized retailer who sells Hearts On Fire diamonds is a great option if you can afford the ridiculous premium.
I hope this review has given you useful insights. I wish you the best of luck with your diamond ring and if you have questions, feel free to get in touch via email or leave a comment below!