European Gem Lab (EGL) Respectable???

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Learning Diamonds

Feb 12, 2003
Any feedback or background info - experiences using the EGL, or buying EGL certified stones would be greatly appreciated!!


Jan 29, 2003
We won't sell diamonds graded by the EGL or the IGI for that matter. It has been our experience that the GIA, AGS and HRD laboratories are more consistent and stricter in their grading. Diamonds graded by other laboratories are often less expensive, but it seems to us that those diamonds are usually less expensive because they have been overgraded. Do yourself a favor, don't buy into the "mall store games" and buy a diamond graded by the GIA, AGS or HRD - you'll greatly improve the odds of getting what you're paying for.


Jan 23, 2003
Well said R&T!!!! But I must say that I trust IGI Antwerp, especially nowdays... They are not the strictest, but usually they're close to HRD.



Oct 30, 2002
Run an archive search on EGL and you will find many threads with the same question or feel as yours. EGL in the past was though to have more lenient grading than other labs such as the GIA, most specifically on color and clarity. For example if there is a stone that has a black carbon inclusion that is visible for the most part to the naked eye from face down, EGL may give that stone an SI3 grading and GIA may give it an I1 grading. The SI3 graded stone can now sell for a little more money than the I1--but the grade may be misleading and the buyer may be unpleasantly surprised when they take that stone to an appraiser and find out its more along the lines of an I1.

However, from what many of the experts and retailers here have said lately, the EGL USA labs (Canada, NY and LA) are far more reliable with stricter grading standards than their overseas counterparts (Israel, London, etc).

You can focus on a cert while you search, or can not...and instead use what you learn from this forum as well as tools such as the IdealScope and a 10x loupe to train yourself to recognize the basics of color and clarity, using the IS for cut grading. Many people do not feel comfortable purchasing a diamond without some sort of lab certification, while others prefer to just use their eyes, their knowledge, and their gut instinct to buy, and being sure to send off the stone to an independent appraiser for confirmation of all the details. Your comfortability level may be one or the other. It is often thought that a diamond is a safer purchase if it has a certification attached, which may be the case in terms of having some sort of paper confirmation of the color and clarity of the stone, and the general idea of depth and table, etc.

GIA and AGS are the labs that seem to be the most favored, with what seems like many EGL certed stones being sold in retail jewelers and mall stores, so they seem to get more of a bad rap. But there are people on here who have purchased EGL stones recently and been quite pleased. Would suggest if you are considering an EGL stone to be sure that the lab that graded it was one of the US labs vs overseas, and get it independently appraised regardless of which lab graded it to be sure that all is well.

Good luck!!
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