Ask yourself a question, “Why do people buy jewelry?” Personal adornment? Partly beauty? Certainly investment? Some, but the number one reason for the purchase of jewelry is status. Pure and simple. If I can have something you can’t have I’m better than you.
I don’t agree with it but it’s a fact. People buy jewelry to impress. If not others, themselves. I’ve heard more than one woman in my day at a big 10th or 25th anniversary say, “I deserve this diamond, I’ve earned it. When I wear it I feel complete, when I don’t I feel naked. Diamonds make me feel special.”
Why doesn’t paste or glass or cubic zirconias make a woman feel special? They certainly look pretty. They certainly cover the personal adornment category. So why diamonds? Why gold? Why platinum? Because they are supposed to be valuable. They are supposed to be heirlooms. They are supposed to look beautiful, be durable and maybe if we are lucky we will have something to pass down to our loved ones along with a story of the special day that piece of jewelry came to be.
Jewelry is bought and sold every day because it is supposed to be valuable, it is supposed to be worth something. Then it’s our job to weave it into our personal folklore that we can pass down through the generations. But what if it’s not?
What if all the big retailers put together a lot of pretty shiny jewelry, ran expensive ads at Christmas and Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day and told everyone buy this 7ct tennis bracelet for $1,000.00, buy this diamond drop necklace for $199.00, buy these 1ctw diamond stud earrings for $499.00 and make your loved one feel special. And what if that jewelry was junk? Hollowed out metal, under-carated gold, treated diamonds with no value. Would your loved one feel special then? When the ads on TV say we only choose the best diamonds for your loved ones and it isn’t the truth is it fraud? Is it?
It is! Plain and simple. When someone buys something and thinks it has an inherent value and it doesn’t, they are stealing from you. They might as well have stuck a gun to your side at an ATM. But this is worse. These are our mothers, daughters, wives, sisters, our family that are being taken every time a national chain pushes a piece of junk at a low price and has the gall to call it fine jewelry.
I don’t have to mention these chain’s names, you know who they are and it’s horrendous. In the corporate boardrooms they laugh, “What the customer doesn’t know won’t hurt them!” Tell that to the grand daughter that just inherited Nana’s wedding ring and you have to explain to her it’s worthless. Tell it to the ex-wife who after 20 years of being a housewife and got a piece of jewelry every year and now needs money to survive that her nest egg is one step above costume jewelry.
Fine jewelry shouldn’t have an expiration date. Paper cups, razors, newspapers; these are things you use and throw away; not jewelry. For the first time in the history of man you can buy diamonds with blue book values so you won’t get ripped off. Jewelry should have that same guarantee.
I started this article with a question now I’ll end it with one. Would you buy a piece of jewelry if five years from now it was worth 19.7% of what you paid for it? Ninety nine percent of the jewelry bought today falls into that category. The only question left is are you going to buy disposable jewelry or demand something better?
by Fred Cuellar, author of the best-selling book “How to Buy a Diamond.” More questions? Ask the Diamond Guy®