Whether you're looking for a life-altering piece of jewelry like an engagement ring or simply feeling the need for a nice new accessory, shopping for jewelry can be full of pitfalls. You'll want to get the best deal you can on a piece you love without without feeling pressure to get something different than what you really want – but how do you know how to act in the jewelry store? If you're looking for tips to buying jewelry like a pro – even if it's your first time – then here's what you need to know.
Skimp on Stones
Okay, for important pieces and/or gifts you may want to make sure you get an all-natural gem to go with it – but if you're looking to get the prettiest piece of jewelry for a reasonable price, there's no reason to avoid synthetic gems on your jewelry. Not only are these stones much cheaper than the real deal, they're also less likely to have things like scratches or inclusions, making them look perfect to the eye.
Know Your Material
Sure, it might sound really impressive to your friends to say the chain in your necklace is made out of solid platinum – but are you really going to take the time to buy an expensive metal chain only to have it there as a vehicle with which to show a much cheaper pendant? While high-end or trendy metals such as platinum, rose gold, and 18k yellow gold might sound super impressive, there's a good chance you can't tell platinum from sterling silver (a metal that's just as impressive-looking and long lasting for a fraction of the price) or 18k gold from 14k gold (again, long-lasting but just a little less pure). Actually knowing what metals are worth what – and how to compromise on them to get the same aesthetic – can cut down the price of the pieces you want by half.
Ignore the Brand
You should generally be aware of brands, if only to differentiate costume jewelry brands from actual jewelry brands, but that's where you should draw the line. Though you may love a certain celebrity, you shouldn't purchase a piece of jewelry based solely on their name being attached to it. The absolute only things that matter in a piece of jewelry are the quality of the parts used and how much you love it. That's it – no amount of celebrity endorsement will raise the quality, and no amount of celebrity endorsement should affect how much you love the piece in question.
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