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Review of Brian Gavin “Blue” Diamonds – Are They Worth Your Money?

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Fluorescence has always been a tricky subject in the diamond world, with many believing that it is a negative feature in a diamond. But in fact, fluorescence can be an advantage, even elevating the quality of a diamond.

Brian Gavin understands this and in his Blue Diamond collection, he celebrates diamonds with fluorescence. The Blue Collection is quite unique and was the first of its kind to focus on an aspect of diamonds that other retailers tried to avoid. Brian Gavin shows why it’s unfair to look down on fluorescence. With impeccable cut quality at competitive prices, Brian Gavin Blue is definitely a collection to check out.

Here’s what Brian Gavin Blue is all about.

A Brief Look at Fluorescence

Fluorescence refers to the glow that a diamond gives out when the stone is subject to UV light rays. You would only see this phenomenon under black light and the diamond would appear normal under normal lighting conditions.

According to studies conducted by the GIA, the average shopper cannot identify whether or not a diamond contains fluorescence. The study also concluded that for a large majority of diamonds, fluorescence does not have a noticeable effect.

Statistics say that 1 in every 3 diamonds has some degree of fluorescence, meaning that over 30% of all diamonds exhibit fluorescence.

This is the grading system for fluorescence as devised by the GIA:

GIA Fluorescence in diamonds

Most retailers tend to avoid diamonds with Medium to Very Strong fluorescence, pushing to sell ‘clean’ stones instead. Invariably, stones with None and Faint fluorescence levels are more expensive than those with stronger fluorescence, all else being equal.

There are two sides to the fluorescence story.

In some cases, fluorescence can cause a diamond to appear milky or hazy. However in others, it ranges from showing no effect at all to making the diamond appear slightly whiter. The good news for consumers is that, you can purchase a lower color grade diamond with fluorescence and still have a beautiful stone, without paying what it would cost without fluorescence.

This video shows how a Brian Gavin Blue diamond looks under different sources of light. As you can see, the diamond is brilliant and beautiful with hardly any difference in appearance from a diamond with no fluorescence.

The diamond with fluorescence has to be carefully chosen to ensure that the fluorescence is not negatively affecting the stone.

This is where Brian Gavin Blue comes in.

History of Brian Gavin and Fluorescent Diamonds

Back in 1999, when Brian Gavin first began selling diamonds online, the company used to sell diamonds with blue fluorescence but found that shoppers returned these diamonds after purchase.

He later found out that consumers would take their diamonds to in-store jewelers to have them checked and were told that the diamond they had purchased online was inferior due to the fluorescence they contained. Consumers believed they had been sold an inferior diamond and would return them. As a result, Brian Gavin stopped selling diamonds with blue fluorescence.

fluorescent diamond brian gavin

A Brian Gavin Blue diamond with strong fluorescence. See more here.

With the 2008 financial crisis, people began looking for less expensive alternatives when it came to diamonds. This is when the company began their Blue collection, marketing diamonds with fluorescence effectively and increasing their appeal to consumers.

In this video, Brian Gavin (the founder of the company) speaks at length about the Blue Collection.

Brian Gavin Blue Diamonds

When choosing diamonds for the collection, Brian Gavin is careful to filter out stones that show any negative effects of fluorescence. In fact, each diamond is cherry picked and individually inspected to ensure that the stone passes the high selection criteria of the company.

Here are some of the benefits of a Brian Gavin Blue diamond.

Great Value

Because diamonds with fluorescence are not held in high regard, these stones are often lower in price providing excellent value for the consumer. In fact, such diamonds can be up to 15% lower in price than diamonds without fluorescence.

For the sake of comparison, let’s take the following two diamonds which have very similar specifications: Brian Gavin Blue Fluorescent Diamond and a Brian Gavin Signature diamond.

The two diamonds are near identical in appearance. However, the Blue diamond has Strong Blue fluorescence while the Signature diamond has negligible fluorescence. The difference in price is over $1000!

If you’re on a budget but still want a large, stunning diamond, then it’s clear that the Blue collection is one to check out.

Stunning Cut Quality

Brian Gavin is known for their excellence in cut quality and this can be seen in their Blue fluorescent diamond range as well. Each Blue diamond comes with an AGS lab grade of ‘0’ Ideal for light performance and ‘O’ Ideal to ‘1’ Excellent for polish and symmetry.

Although not marketed as such, each diamond in the Blue collection is a Heart and Arrow diamonds, which are very rare. H&A diamonds refer to diamonds that have cut quality that go beyond the ideal/excellent cut, into the realm of super ideal cut.

ASET and Idealscope Images of a Brian Gavin Blue fluorescent diamond show the perfect cut of the stone.

H&A diamonds always come with a premium due to their rarity, emotional appeal and the effort that goes into creating them. However, with the Blue range, you receive one of these stunning cuts without the high price tag that normally comes with them.

What Brian Gavin has done to compensate for what the market perceives as a flaw (i.e. the fluorescence) is to elevate the diamond’s quality factors. Having impeccable cut is one sure way of doing this.

Color and Transparency

The diamonds chosen for the Blue collection are those that have no negative effects from fluorescence. Each stone has been tested for transparency, to ensure that there is no milky or hazy effect.

Once the diamond is mounted into its setting, whether it be an engagement ring or other type of jewelry, it will likely be impossible to identify if the stone has fluorescence at all unless you’re under UV lighting.

Engagement ring with diamond from Blue collection Brian Gavin

It is difficult to identify fluorescence once the diamond is mounted. See this ring here.

For lower color grades, blue fluorescence can make the stone appear whiter than it is. Take a look at the K and M diamonds side by side in the image below. The first image shows the diamonds’ reaction to Ultra Violet lighting. The K diamond has not reaction but the M has strong fluorescence and so it reacts strongly to the light.  

k m color diamond

K color diamond with no fluorescence and an M with strong fluorescence

However, once the UV light is switched off, compare the two diamonds in their normal appearance. The two stones appear identical, and it is difficult to tell them apart. The fluorescence could be the reason that the M color grade diamond appears whiter than it is, in this case it looks like a K.

K M color diamonds

Can you see a difference in the color between these two diamonds even though they are 2 grades apart?

Not only does the diamond with fluorescence look stunning but it will also be less expensive than a diamond with a higher color grade.

Diamond Data

Unlike many online retailers, Brian Gavin provides a large amount of information about each of their diamonds, including ASET, Idealscope and HD videos and images. For their Blue collection, they also provide images that show how the diamond reacts to UV light.

Diamond with fluorescent Brian Gavin

A Blue Fluorescent Diamond with Strong Fluorescence. See more diamonds here.

This information allows you to make an informed choice regarding the diamond.

Possibility of Upgrading

One benefit of buying a Brian Gavin Blue is that you can always upgrade it down the line to a larger or better diamond. The company will deduct the total cost of your Blue diamond from that of the new one you choose, meaning that you receive 100% of what yours is worth. There are some terms and conditions to this upgrade policy but it is well worth looking into if you plan on buying your dream diamond down the line.

To Sum Up

As stated on their website, Brian Gavin allows you to take advantage of the prejudice against fluorescence. While most people think fluorescence is a flaw, it can actually be an advantage if the stone is chosen carefully.

With Brian Gavin’s high standards, there is no doubt that each diamond from the Blue Collection is a great find at a competitive price.

For more information about fluorescence, check out our detailed article here.

Feeling like browsing? Check out the Brian Gavin Blue Collection here.

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