Jewelry is a versatile accessory that can be customized to your tastes. Varieties range from large “statement” pieces to smaller and more subtle ones. Decide on what kind of jewelry you’re looking for and learn how to invest your hard-earned money in pieces that will last a lifetime. Whatever you do, however, don’t settle for low quality. Know your stuff when buying jewelry, starting with these tips.
1. Research Karats and Materials
What is a “carat”? The term refers to how much a diamond weighs. This is different from a “karat,” which is usually used to describe gold. It means how pure the gold is and if it’s been mixed with other metals. 24-karat gold is too soft to be used in jewelry. 14K is the most commonly used, mostly for affordability, but you can go as high as 18K if you want something more authentic. As for what colors to get, it can be easy to get overwhelmed by the “agony of choice” when it comes to jewelry materials. A good place to start is by using a skin undertones chart. Everyone has a different skin tone. This impacts what clothing and jewelry will look best on them. Knowing what skin tone you have narrows down your choices. For example, diamond earrings tend to look better on cool skin tones, while gold jewelry tends to flatter warmer ones.
2. Buy Jewelry from Reliable Sellers
A good jewelry seller has several important characteristics. The first is, of course, positive word of mouth. Read reviews if they are an online seller and check to make sure that they have a real physical location that you can visit. Avoid stores with pushy salespeople; purchasing expensive jewelry is not a decision made lightly. You can hold your own when buying jewelry if you are comfortable with the industry language, and stay true to what you know you want rather than what they say you need.
3. Determine Market Prices
Jewelry is an ever-changing business and so too are its prices. Know what a piece’s true worth is before committing. This can involve getting it appraised. The appraisal result is dependent upon stone, weight, and metals. Do some comparison shopping as well. The price of a single necklace can fluctuate wildly. Figure out its average and what you are actually willing to pay. If you want to have the greatest control, plan to spend more rather than less when buying jewelry. This will allow you to easily turn down flashy offers on okay jewelry in favor of items that you actually want. If there is a particular piece of jewelry that you know you want and have time to wait for, consider watching its price over time and waiting for the right deal or price drop before making your purchase.
4. Have the Jewelry Insured
Protect your investment. Some insurance companies actually specialize in jewelry insurance. Policies differ across the board. In what circumstances is the piece covered? How do you prove it has been lost or damaged? Can the insurer replace the item? This is why market prices are a handy reference. It can help calculate how much the policy may cost. High-quality jewelry is at greater risk of being stolen than cheap costume pieces, and so you’ll want to make sure that you have a plan to avoid significant loss if that occurs.
Jewelry is an ideal finishing touch to any outfit. Taking time to evaluate your needs, your color scheme, and what you value in high-quality jewelry will help you find the perfect piece to add to your wardrobe.
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