Upgrading or Trading In A Diamond Ring

Sharif Khan
Sharif Khan
Last Updated    EST 
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A symbol of style, class, and timeless love, diamonds are everlasting. However, one sometimes thinks the gorgeous ring could look more appealing on the finger. A couple who had bought a ring years ago now decided to spruce it up. It could be because it is either a plain one that could fit their budget at the time or has undergone years of wear. Their ring tastes and preferences may have changed altogether.

Since they must have placed an enormous attachment on the diamond, trading it off is unlikely. They might want to continue wearing the ring as they reflect on the glorious moments and savor the nostalgic memories it carries with it. Admittedly, the couple has made one of the wisest decisions in their marriage or courtship.

Retaining a diamond ring symbolizes a person’s undying love for their partner. It is also an excellent way of strengthening a relationship. Many reasons drive people to upgrade their diamonds. Should it be desired, there are several ways to do so and continue living the dreams of a relationship. But how does one go about it? 

Check out this quick diamond-buying cheat sheet. Also, search & watch diamonds in super HD 360 degrees.

Why Upgrade a Diamond

1. Change of Social Status

You likely bought the current diamond when the income was low. Money poured in as time passed, hence the climb up the social ladder. It is natural to desire to upgrade the diamond to reflect on your new social status.

It is important to note that it does not necessarily mean getting a new or bigger diamond. Also, remember that diamond ring settings wear out faster than the real stone. Therefore, you should consider retaining the diamond and only swapping the ring setting.

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2. Outdated Ring Styles

The jewelry industry is ever-evolving, and designs that ruled the world a decade ago may have become obsolete now. It is especially true for ring designs that were popularized by celebrities. Investing in a vintage ring or keeping their old diamond may seem the best for those who love good, old things. However, upgrading their diamonds is the real deal for people who prefer to keep up with the new fashion trends.

Also, experts are continuously experimenting with newer diamond cut styles and ring settings—the landscape of the jewelry industry changes following the introduction of a new design, overwhelming diamond shoppers. You will miss the craze if you do not jump on the bandwagon.

3. Changing Personal Tastes

Tastes and preferences change with time. How many people would happily wear the same clothing or hairstyles that they wore five years ago?

Similarly, it is possible to grow out of love with a diamond after some time, no matter how glamorous it looks. When that time comes, you must choose between retaining the less sparkly gemstone and upgrading it for a flashier one.

4. When Dealing with an Old Jewelry

Jewelry has been passed down traditionally from one generation to the other. However, a piece of diamond cushioned a century ago cannot look as brilliant today as it did then.

If you immensely value your stone because it reminds you of strong kinship ties, selling it off will sound inconceivable. The best bet here is to upgrade the diamond and make it more elegant without compromising the sentimental attachment.

5. Marking Important Milestones

Acquiring newer and better stuff is one of the many ways people celebrate significant milestones. The same holds for jewelry. If you got engaged ten years ago and planned to walk down the aisle, consider upgrading your diamond. Conversely, if a significant anniversary is around the corner, such as the golden jubilee of a marriage, an upgrade can make it more memorable.

Upgrading a diamond on such occasions is an excellent way of surrendering the old and embracing the new. As luck would have it, this does not imply losing your original gemstone or ring. You can keep it a constant reminder of the journey towards a new status.

There are numerous other reasons to deliberate a diamond upgrade. Whatever inspires the decision, ensure it works out for emotional and financial needs.

Ideal Time to Upgrade a Diamond

When upgrading a diamond, there is no right or wrong time. Instead, the decision is highly personal. But for engagement rings, it is significant that you involve your wife in the process. It is widely known that getting one’s spouse a surprise diamond gift is the perfect way to wow them and strengthen love. However, it does not always work out like this for diamond upgrades.

Think of it as sanctioning a kitchen renovation without involving your other half. Although the decision may have been well-intentioned, your wife will feel offended for being left out. Even after choosing to upgrade, do not take the plunge before seeking the opinions of renowned gemologists. Above all, ensure that the upgraded stone complies with the current design trends in the diamond industry.

How to Upgrade Your Diamond

1. Invest Time in Learning About Diamonds

A diamond upgrade is in many ways similar to buying a new gem. Thus, it pays to get it right from the get-go. Remember the factors you considered when buying the stone for the first time?

You probably began with some research on the 4Cs. Afterward, you sought a reliable dealer. While trying to find one, you invest time in checking out their collection of diamonds in terms of the designs and brands they offer(ed). Finally, you compared prices before ordering the gemstone.

As we shall discover, upgrading a diamond is nearly the same as buying a new one, so jewelry experts recommend investing in a diamond-buying first. Doing so will remind you of the fundamental things to remember when upgrading a gemstone.

2. Is the Diamond Being Upgraded or the Ring?

Choosing what to upgrade between the gemstone and the ring can be challenging. In the case of a loose diamond, this agony will not prove bothersome. But for ring-mounted diamonds, this is a necessary step. As mentioned, diamond rings generally wear off faster than the diamond itself. Therefore, they are often prime candidates for upgrades, although some people may choose to upgrade the gemstone and keep their ring. It all comes down to the sentiments attached to either of the two things concerned.

Expectedly, upgrading the ring is less rigorous than upgrading the diamond. For ring upgrades, visiting a jewelry store and choosing the perfect size and style will suffice. Afterward, the diamond will be dismounted and cleaned before entering the new ring. In some cases, sprucing the present one alone will do the job.

After you plan to upgrade your diamond, you may buy a new stone, however unwillingly so. Therefore, you should locate a dealer that offers favorable trade-in policies. Such caution guarantees you sell off the original gemstone and possibly use the proceeds to pay for the new one.

In rare cases, some people may upgrade the stone and the ring. It is a decision that will require a substantial financial investment on their part compared to the two cases mentioned above.

3. Choose the Diamond that You Desire to Upgrade

Upgrading a diamond's cut, color, or carat weight is comparatively easy due to the limited options. But when it comes to clarity, you will need more time to locate a diamond with the desired clarity rating. It is so because an old gemstone will likely contain internal and external flaws. Also, most diamonds nowadays are so polished that they only feature internal inclusions. Consequently, if you are careless, a dealer might use the external flaws to their advantage.

4. For the Most Dazzling Appearance, Upgrade the Cut or Carat Weight of the Diamond

A diamond’s cut and carat weight significantly impact the overall brilliance of the stone. Therefore, these are the two crucial elements of the Four Cs that you should always consider if you desire to enhance your diamond’s glitter. But even then, experts recommend striking the right balance between the carat weight and cut because some cuts give more brilliance than others, regardless of their similarities in carat weights.

Insist on cuts with more facets; the higher the number of angles in a diamond, the more sparkle the stone will give. This factor explains why marquise, pear, and oval cuts give exceptional brilliance compared to Asscher, emerald, and radiant cuts. The round cut is the most brilliant, considering it has infinite facets.

Consider upgrading the cut first for diamonds with a cut grade of Good or below. Cut grades of Very Good, Excellent, or Ideal are great places to start. Afterward, depending on your budget, you will determine whether increasing the carat weight is worth it.

5. Consider Color and Clarity Upgrades

Clarity and color impact the brilliance of a diamond less than its cut and carat do. However, they still contribute to the overall sparkle of the stone.

Remember that some diamond colors are rarer than others, hence more expensive. For instance, among the colored diamonds, purple and red colors come with heftier price tags than their yellow or brown counterparts—generally, the fancier the color, the costlier the diamond. Colorless diamonds are an exception to this rule and are the most expensive. Similarly, flawless diamonds are costlier than those with external and internal blemishes.

Upgrading a diamond based on color and clarity is primarily a budget-driven decision. A diamond with a clarity score of IF would be ideal if affordable. But being the most internally flawless, such diamonds can be considerably pricey. Thus, if your budget does not allow it, contemplate upgrading to the VVS1 or VVS2 clarity grades. A diamond with a clarity grade of VVS1 or VVS2 contains minimal flaws. It will look eye-clean to most people and is cheaper than IF diamonds.

In terms of color, we recommend an upgrade to a color range closest to D on the diamond color scale because such diamonds tend to appear colorless even under magnification. Consider upgrading to G, H, and I colors for more budget flexibility. Diamonds within this range look colorless to the naked eye and are comparatively cheaper.

The color of the ring also comes in handy here. Rings of colored metals, such as rose gold, absorb the yellow tint in most diamonds. If you are on a budget and can afford an upgrade to a diamond with visible yellow tints, such rings can be ideal.

6. What If You Are Upgrading Your Setting?

As stated, upgrading a diamond ring setting is reasonably easier and cheaper than upgrading the diamond. But this does not imply throwing caution to the wind. You must define the ideal ring setting before beginning with the upgrade, during which process you will realize that numerous ways are available. It all depends on what these tastes are and what the budget allows.

Consider upgrading a solitaire ring to a 3-stone engagement ring, otherwise an excellent symbol of the past, present, and future. The additional diamonds should be smaller to help accentuate the center stone. Also, the stones should be set on all sides of the first diamond.

Another option for upgrading the ring setting is to enhance the solitaire instead of replacing it with a 3-stone ring. It especially applies to people who cherish the simplicity of solitaire rings.

You can use extra stones to enhance the color of a ring. The good news is that these stones need not necessarily be other diamonds. How about experimenting with sapphires, emeralds, or rubies? Such stones will add more sparkle to an old ring, making the diamond appear more brilliant.

Changing the color of a diamond ring is yet another ingenious way of upgrading the ring. Here, we recommend Gold and platinum rings. Gold and platinum glitter and increase the sparkle of a diamond. Besides, a ring made of either of these metals will absorb flaws and unpleasant color hues. Experts strongly recommend platinum since it does not require replating and is hypoallergenic.

Lastly, you can deliberate doubling the halo. Halo ring settings are as elegant as they are popular. Not only do they look stylish, but they also feature a touch of classic. As such, they help preserve a timeless attachment to the diamond. So, instead of replacing the halo ring with a new one, consider adding a new ring to the older one.

7. Choose a Jeweler Wisely

After you choose which aspects of your diamonds you want to upgrade, choose the right vendor. At the very least, insist on a dealer with an elaborate diamond upgrade program.

While looking for a reliable dealer, do not overemphasize the price of a diamond upgrade. Much as you desire a seller who charges competitive rates, you should not seek the bargain of the century.

Also, expect the process to be handled slowly. A diamond upgrade is an intricate procedure that requires expert hands. If possible, upgrade the diamond where you bought the initial stone since this will allow you to leverage the gem’s warranty and return policy.

Final Thoughts

Upgrading a diamond is a process that is as rigorous as purchasing a new stone, explaining why you should only proceed from the point of information—ideally, knowing why and what to upgrade should mark the beginning of the process. Afterward, you will assess the budget and choose the right dealer.