2. Make sure that the jewelry is appraised by a licensed gemologist. A gemologist appraises a jewel’s worth based on spectroscopy (the analysis on how gems absorb light)
3. Learn the basics yourself. Visit the Gemological Institute of America (GIA). It offers online short courses on jewelry appraising.
4. Check your receipts. See to it that the description accurately matches the jewelry you paid for.
5. Solid gold or gold plated? Don’t be fooled. A gold plating means only a thin layer of gold is deposited on a metal’s surface.
6. Have the jewelry appraised by a certified gemologist. If you have doubts about the quality of the jewelry you bought, have it appraised and if the gemologist confirms your doubts, you have the right to return it and refund your money.
7. Check the merchant’s payment system. When purchasing online, make sure that the merchant uses a trusted payment system like PayPal, and that the site uses a secured web server. (Check the https:// at the beginning of the web address and the pad locked icon at the bottom right of your browser)
8. Buy only from reputable merchants. There are sellers who may offer a lower price but don’t take the risk. Better to buy only online merchants with an excellent reputation in the industry.
9. What about the customer feedback? Check on what past customers say about the seller especially if you’re buying from online auction sites like eBay and others.
10. Buy only from jewelers that provide a money-back guarantee.