Spot the fake sparkle!
Who does not love jewellery? Gold, diamonds, platinum—the choices are numerous. Many people consider gold as a worthy investment and hence invest in jewellery as well as gold bars. However, while purchasing jewellery, people have to be on the look-out for fake items. As there is a high demand for these precious items, the fake jewellery market is rapidly thriving.
If a person suspects that the jewellery purchased is fake, then he can take it to a nearby jewellery shop and do a quality check. There are, however, ways by which the buyer himself can check the authenticity of the jewellery.
Look for a hallmark: Most jewellery items come with a stamp or hallmark like 9 Carat, 14 Carat, 18 Carat, 22 Carat Gold and 950 Platinum, 950 Silver. When purchasing your jewellery, be sure to check for the hallmark stamp to confirm its genuineness.
Check for visible discolouration: When you have selected an item, you must check for discolouration in areas that are subjected to constant friction, mainly near the edges. In gold-plated jewellery, the gold will wear off, revealing the actual metal inside.
Re-check the jewellery source: If there are suspicions that the jewellery item purchased may be fake, one must immediately check from where it has been purchased. If it has been bought online, then check if the seller has an original logo or some other official representation.
Check return policy clause: While purchasing any jewellery item, the customer is usually given the option of a return policy where the item can be returned within 14 days if he/she is not satisfied. If the jewellery is suspected to be fake, one must check whether there was any return policy mentioned during the purchase. If not, the item is most likely to be fake.
Take the bite test: Movies have often shown this test as a way of checking whether the gold is real or fake. Bite into your piece of gold and if there are deep markings, it indicates that the gold is pure.
Try the magnet test: If you are not happy with the bite test, try the magnet test. Place the jewellery against a strong magnet and if it sticks, it shows that the item is fake; real gold is not magnetic.
The Nitric Acid Test: This test is the best way to find out the purity of gold. Apply a drop of nitric acid on a part of the gold item and then place it in a stainless steel vessel. If the piece emits a green coloured reaction to the acid, it indicates that the item was gold-plated. If there is a cream coloured/milky reaction, then the item has sterling silver as base metal and is vermeil gold. If there is no reaction, then be assured that the item is pure gold.
Costume jewellery: Some costume jewellery will fake glass or plastic gemstones to cut costs. They also use polished brass which will cause skin discolouration and itchiness, a sign that the jewellery is fake.
So next time you purchase jewellery, make sure to confirm that your money is being spent on the ‘real gem’ and not a fake replica.