As someone who's always on the lookout for the perfect diamond, I know how overwhelming it can be to find the best online diamond store that offers both quality and value.
But fear not, I've spent dozens of hours researching and comparing different online diamond retailers to curate a list of the best ones out there.
Whether you're looking for a dazzling engagement ring or a simple necklace, the stores below offer a variety of options to suit your needs and budget.
Best Online Diamond Store Picks in 2023
Look no further, here is our list of the best diamond stores to consider:
- Best Overall Diamond Retailer (Quality & Value): James Allen
- Best Diamond Selection (& Fine Jewelry): Blue Nile
- Great Ethical Diamond Stance: Brilliant Earth
- Highest-Quality Diamond Cuts: Whiteflash
|1. James Allen||
Most Optimized Online Site
|2. Blue Nile||
|3. Brilliant Earth||
Laser Inscribed Diamonds
1. James Allen
James Allen is the best overall retailer when it comes to buying diamonds online, offering a wide selection of high-quality diamonds.
They're investing millions of dollars in optimizing and fine-tuning the virtual buying process for jewelry, providing user-friendly website navigation and customization tools which puts them on the cutting edge of eCommerce.
They do have a couple of physical stores in Georgia and New York, but mostly operate online, making it convenient for customers in those states who prefer in-person consultations.
People love buying diamonds and engagement rings with James Allen and consider it one of the best places to buy diamonds from thanks to their reputable name and strong reputation with positive customer reviews and testimonials.
One unique and highly appreciated feature they offer is a complete 360° view of every single diamond, allowing you to see any specific diamond characteristics in that piece. This capability provides high-resolution images and 360-degree videos of all of their loose diamonds.
While many retailers also offer a diamond viewer, they typically have limited functionality and are only available for a small subset of their collection, rather than for the entire collection like at James Allen.
I found the picture in the viewer is extremely clear and allows you to see even the slightest of inclusions in the diamond without actually being physically present.
You can even set your desired loose stone in a pendant, earrings, or ring setting, allowing for a complete customization of your piece.
They offer their customers a lifetime warranty on diamonds and jewelry that includes retipping of prongs, deep cleaning, polishing, and rhodium plating.
All other diamond repair work is sent in for an estimate, and then done if you decide to go ahead with the price.
From my experience, the diamond retailer doesn't cover loss of any stones, so keep that in mind when considering this retailer.
James Allen also gives you hassle-free returns for 30 days with a clear and comprehensive return policy.
While many retailers, including some below, make you pay a shipping fee for returns on engagement rings, James Allen does not.
They offer various shipping options and fast delivery times, making it easier for customers.
They'll send you a pre-paid label and refund the engagement ring back to the original card of purchase. They really are the best option when it comes to getting the most out of your diamond purchase.
Your ring is eligible for the best Lifetime Upgrade for trading up at least 2x its original value. That's basically like getting a brand new ring for half of what most people would be paying for an engagement ring!
Lastly, James Allen goes the extra mile when compared to some of the other stores by also offering you 1 free resizing for your engagement ring within the first year, as one of their additional services.
- Has the best lifetime warranty
- Free sizing for a year
- Lifetime upgrade
- Clear 360° view
- Not the best for diamond fine jewelry
- Does not cover loss of stones in settings
2. Blue Nile
Right behind James Allen, Blue Nile is among the best places to buy in terms of online buying experience for diamonds and gemstones.
They offer competitive prices and a wide range of diamond fine jewelry, unlike some of the other competitors that focus solely on loose diamonds.
They have a similar 360° camera for select pieces, but most are generic 2D pictures with some shots of models wearing the jewelry. When you buy diamonds from Blue Nile, you can be sure you are getting them from a reputable diamond seller that provides detailed diamond certificates from reputable laboratories.
Blue Nile offers a vast selection of everything from loose diamonds to tungsten carbide rings for men. They also have a wide range of diamond fine jewelry, providing a variety of engagement ring styles and settings.
As for warranties, I have to say I'm not a huge fan of Blue Nile's. The jeweler has the typical manufacturer defect policy, but other than that, everything is out of pocket.
They recommend you get your jewelry cleaned and inspected for retipping of prongs or loose stones every six months.
Cleaning and maintenance services are available for purchased jewelry, but at an additional cost.
They'll inspect your jewelry for free, but you will have to pay if it needs any work. In addition to the inspection, you also have to pay to ship it to be inspected. And, if you choose to have your diamonds worked on by anyone else, it voids the warranty.
Blue Nile has it all when it comes to diamond certification. You may receive a GIA grading report from the Gemological Institute of America, Gemex Light Performance report, and a GIA Diamond Dossier for all diamonds under 1 carat weight.
They provide a helpful diamond education center with valuable information for buyers, ensuring you make an informed decision.
When inspecting the diamond characteristics with Blue Nile, I love that they are like James Allen with the way you're able to rotate the diamond, rather than the view.
I really wish they had an HD viewer, though, because I can't quite see it as sharp as I'd like to. Blue Nile could improve its user experience by providing high-resolution images and 360-degree videos of diamonds, similar to James Allen.
In summary, you can't go wrong by choosing your diamond and fine jewelry from the vast selection available at Blue Nile.
- Diamonds from reputable dealers
- Loose diamond and fine diamond jewelry
- Diamond certification
- Rotating view of diamonds
- Unimpressive warranty
- Diamond view on website is not as high definition as James Allen
3. Brilliant Earth
Brilliant Earth is another widely known online diamond retailer that offers a wide selection of high-quality diamonds. Although most people shop on their website, I noticed they also have 14 showroom locations across the United States. You can book an appointment with a diamond expert either in-store or virtually, ensuring exceptional customer service and support.
The best thing that sets BE apart from other diamond retailers is their socially ethical platform. Instead of just following the Kimberley Process like every other natural diamond seller, they only source their diamonds from certain areas and even offer the best deep tracking on many of their natural diamonds called blockchain diamonds.
Brilliant Earth partnered up with a blockchain technology company that sends the buyer a special code through email. The code allows you into the blockchain system and you can see where the diamond has been in all 7 phases of its production.
The process is very secure and hard to hack. Each phase has to be signed off on. It fills in all the information about where your diamond has been between the origin, where it's mined, all the way to your ring finger. Conflict-free diamonds only tell you that it has been mined from an approved place.
Even so, only GIA Origin Reports can confirm the area in which it was mined.
Aside from blockchain diamonds, they have some of the best lab grown diamonds, natural diamonds with GIA Origin Reports, and recycled diamonds. Recycled diamonds have been previously owned and recut, which is much better for the environment than natural or lab diamonds.
I like how they also use recycled metals for most of the gold jewelry in their inventory, as well as environmentally conscious packing materials and wooden jewelry boxes.
The main complaints about Brilliant Earth boil down to about two things: prices and reputation. Many customers like Brilliant Earth, but often find comparable diamonds at cheaper online retailers. However, if ethics is important to you, they really are a good option.
You'll find all over the internet about an article that investigated Brilliant Earth's diamond origins and it really messed up their reputation on the web like rumors do, whether true or not. I address it in my full Brilliant Earth review, but it's worth mentioning here because it's like the elephant in the room about them.
Lastly, they offer a warranty that covers the routine maintenance, but you pay for it depending on the price of your item. Their Extended Service Plan is similar to Jared and Zales, but Brilliant Earth's ESP lasts three years and gives an option of renewal.
- Traceable natural diamonds and recycled diamonds
- Great for GIA Origin reports
- Ethically conscious
- Renewable warranty
- Higher prices
- Divided customer audiences
Whiteflash is an online diamond jewelry retailer that also has a brick and mortar store in Houston, Texas. They are renowned for having diamonds with excellent cuts, hence their slogan "A Cut Above."
They provide user-friendly website navigation and search tools, which make it pretty easy to buy diamonds on their website, although they have some big differences when compared to James Allen or Blue Nile.
I looked at their loose diamond collection and I do like the way they have their diamond filters set up.
I really like that when I search for a certain loose diamond, I can scroll over each diamond result quickly and narrow it down to ones I'm interested without ever having to open a tab. Very convenient.
While Whiteflash has plenty of diamond ring and jewelry options, they are definitely lax when it comes to gemstone jewelry. In fact, they don't have any on their site, but you can inquire within and they can arrange an order for you.
Whiteflash prides themselves on their own American Gem Society (AGS) certified diamonds. They are also laser-inscribed with a unique number so you will always be able to identify or report it if stolen.
Not only do you get the 4Cs of your diamond certified, but each diamond in their Premium and Expert selections also comes with a full light performance analysis for brilliance, fire, and dispersion.
This jeweler also offers 100% diamond trade-up for life, a 30-day return policy, and a buyback program after one year, which provides customers with competitive prices and frequent discounts.
Their secure and trustworthy online payment system ensures a hassle-free shopping experience.
Some of the staff at Whiteflash are also GIA certified through the Gemological Institute of America, the best institution for Gemology. You can be assured you are getting correct diamond information from Whiteflash, as they provide detailed diamond certificates from reputable laboratories.
Whiteflash also offers customization options, such as designing your own engagement ring, allowing you to create a unique and personal piece.
- Laser inscribed diamond
- Money back guarantee
- Best name brand selections
- 30 day returns
- Buyback on engagement rings
- Bad diamond lighting for viewing characteristics
- No way to see gemstone jewelry (or loose stones)
If you'd like to know my insights on how Whiteflash compares to another retailer retailer with an online plus brick-and-mortar setup, check out my Ritani vs Whiteflash article.
How We Selected The Best Places to Buy Diamonds
While compiling the list of the best online diamond stores, I carefully reviewed the inventory of each store to ensure they offered a wide range of diamonds, including various cuts, colors, and carat weights. I prioritized stores with an extensive selection of loose diamonds and pre-set engagement rings, catering to different tastes and budgets.
I examined the quality of diamonds available at each store by checking their certifications from reputable labs, such as GIA, AGS, and IGI. I also considered stores that only sell ethically sourced, conflict-free diamonds, ensuring customers can purchase with confidence and a clear conscience.
Settings and Jewelry Available
To evaluate the variety of settings and jewelry available, I compared the engagement ring styles, including solitaire, halo, and vintage designs, as well as different metal types, such as gold, platinum, and palladium. I focused on retailers that offer customization options and a range of complementary jewelry, like wedding bands and fine jewelry pieces.
While determining the best places to buy diamonds, I compared the pricing of diamonds and engagement rings across various stores. I prioritized those that offer competitive prices, frequent discounts, and a price match guarantee or price policy, ensuring customers receive great value for their money.
I assessed each store's website experience by considering user-friendly navigation, efficient search tools, and the availability of high-resolution images and 360-degree videos of the diamonds. I also evaluated the presence of valuable educational resources, helping customers make informed decisions.
Although primarily focused on the best online diamond sellers, I took note of those that also have physical showrooms for customers who prefer in-person consultations. I considered the availability of diamond consultants and additional services, such as resizing, cleaning, and maintenance, for a well-rounded experience.
As I compiled the list, I engaged with customer service representatives, utilized the website tools, and consulted with diamond experts to gain a firsthand understanding of the buying process. I prioritized stores with exceptional customer service and support, along with a seamless online shopping experience.
I evaluated each store's customer service by reviewing their return policies, warranties, and upgrade options. I placed emphasis on stores with clear, comprehensive return policies and lifetime warranties on diamonds and jewelry. I also considered the responsiveness of customer service teams and the availability of qualified diamontologists to assist with the buying process.
Additional Buying Options
While we haven't had a chance to vet every single online and brick and mortar retailer in the diamond industry, we've put together a list of some of the best online diamond stores out there. These stores have a reputation for quality, value, and customer service, making them a reliable option for anyone looking to purchase a diamond.
Our own research has found that James Allen offers a wide range of high-quality diamonds at competitive prices, with exceptional customer service to boot. They also have an impressive selection of engagement rings, wedding bands, and other jewelry to choose from.
Other online diamond stores worth considering include Blue Nile, Brilliant Earth, Whiteflash, Brian Gavin Diamonds, Ritani, Zoara, Clean Origin, Diamond Nexus, Leibish & Co., Diamond Foundry, Vrai, and Ada Diamonds. Each of these stores has its own unique selling points and may be a good fit depending on your specific needs and preferences.
For those who prefer to see and touch diamonds in person before making a purchase, there are plenty of brick and mortar diamond retailers to choose from as well.
Some of the most well-known names in the industry include Lumera Diamonds, Jared, Tiffany & Co., Harry Winston, Cartier, Graff, and De Beers. These retailers often offer a more personalized shopping experience and the opportunity to see diamonds up close and in person before making a decision.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best website to buy diamonds?
The best website to buy diamonds from is James Allen. While this varies based on personal preference and budget, James Allen is a great overall option followed by Blue Nile, Brilliant Earth, and Whiteflash.
Is it cheaper to buy a diamond online?
Yes, in most cases buying a diamond online will be 30-40% cheaper due to lower overhead costs for online retailers. However, prices can vary based on the diamond's quality, size, and other factors.
Is it OK to buy diamonds online?
Yes, it is perfectly fine to buy diamonds online as long as you do your research and choose a reputable retailer with reliable customer service. The ones included in this review are all legitimate jewelers.
Who is the largest diamond retailer in the US?
The largest diamond retailer in the US is Signet Jewelers, which owns James Allen, Blue Nile, Kay Jewelers, Zales, Jared, and more brands.
Red Flags When Buying Diamonds Online
While none of these online diamond vendors on this list are red flag worthy, there are a few things to keep in mind when buying diamonds on the net.
Blood diamonds are taken extremely seriously by the best online diamond retailers. All of the retailers on this list are conflict-free diamonds, meaning that people are not being hurt as a result of the production of the diamonds.
They are sourced ethically. Always look for sites that mention if they are conflict-free diamonds.
Secondly, if you're thinking about buying from the best diamond jewelers, make sure they are using proper terminology when referring to the quality. For instance, make sure they are being graded by the GIA 4Cs, and not their own system. Some places will also claim to be certified, but are only certified through their store.
Tip: Certifications by GIA, IGI, AGS, and GCAL are all legitimate certification authorities. Some stores may also do their own certifications in addition to one or more of those mentioned.
Lastly, make sure that your purchase comes with a solid return policy, just in case your diamond doesn't look like what you buy online. You may have to pay a shipping fee, but most reputable diamond stores will pay for it.
Getting The Best Deal When Buying Diamonds Online
Generally the best deals (10-25% off) come during the popular holidays like Valentines Day, Christmas, Mother's Day, Black Friday jewelry deals, etc.
That said, I would advise you wait to buy anything until the best sales come online around these holidays. Lab created diamonds also offer a way of getting a bigger diamond with the best cut at a lower price that is essentially identical to the natural counterpart.
Aside from just waiting for sales or opting for a lab diamond, it pays to brush up on your knowledge of carat, cut, color, and clarity so you know what details to look for vs ignore.
Thankfully, you can learn everything there is to know about gems and the best places to buy diamond engagement rings in 2023 through our buying guides and informational articles. If you are new to the diamond game and are considering purchasing, definitely brush up on your knowledge of the 4Cs.
You'll learn that you don't necessarily need the top grades or biggest carat weights to get the best deal when searching for your next jewelry piece.
And of course, after you've learned the best tricks of the trade, you can now utilize any deals the site you're buying off of may be offering. Double the discounts!
Here are more guides for where to buy specific types of diamond jewelry:
Buy Your Diamonds From...
James Allen is the best online diamond store for its extensive selection, user-friendly site, and exceptional customer service. Their advanced customization tools and 360° diamond view put them miles ahead of the competition.
Additionally, their lifetime warranty, hassle-free returns, and trade-up policy make them a top choice for diamond shoppers.
Plus, with a free resizing option within the first year, James Allen goes above and beyond to provide the best customer experience.