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Enhanced Natural Diamonds



A diamond that has been "enhanced" has been altered from its nature-made condition in some way through one or more treatments to improve its appearance. The consumer must bear in mind that long-term care issues may arise out of this type of enhancement and the value of the diamond may be affected, especially if, in time, the diamond discolors or cracks.

Enhanced diamonds are natural diamonds with natural flaws that have been camouflaged. The following treatments are used to enhance natural diamonds:

Treatment Result
Laser Drilling Removes minor inclusions to increase clarity by dissipating the imperfection – tunnels created and then injected with chemicals to bleach away the color
Fracture Filling Small cracks are filled with glass-like resin – almost impossible to detect the location of the repair as the refraction index of the filler is the same as that of the natural diamond – not a permanent solution
HPHT (High Pressure – High Temperature Developed by General Electric to permanently change the color of a diamond – may be used to transform yellowish diamonds into fancy-colored diamonds or to turn yellow or brown diamonds into colorless diamonds to bring a higher value – this process must be disclosed at the time of sale and is noted on the GIA Report as “HPHT Annealed” or “Artificially Irradiated.”

Detecting an Enhanced or Treated Diamond

Treatment What to Look For
Laser Drilling Very thin white lines or tunnels
Fracture Filling Air bubbles, flawless look from up top but from sides or other angles, flashes of color and pattern disruptions of facets

The CIBO (World Jewelry Confederation), the GIA and the Federal Trade Commission all call for the full disclosure of all enhanced or treated diamonds at the time of sale in order to protect the consumer as well as the industry as a whole.

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