Brilliant Earth Review

Brilliant Earth Review: These pages may reference products from companies that help to support PriceScope. 

Brilliant Earth Review

With their teal-green leaf logo and ethically sourced teakwood ring boxes, Brilliant Earth aims to embody an elegance and social conscience that is appealing to the increasingly conscious millennial buyer.

Their mission is to shine a light on an industry that has a chequered history with ethically questionable practices. 

Our first task is to consider their claims of being the “ethical choice.” After that, we can dive in to determine the value and quality of their diamonds and if they’re really worth their price tag.

Brilliant Earth at a Glance

See criteria definitions.

Jump to:

  1. What is the Brilliant Earth’s story?
  2. What is most appealing about Brilliant Earth?
  3. What diamond and jewelry products does Brilliant Earth offer?
  4. What sets Brilliant Earth apart from others?
  5. What does Brilliant Earth packaging look like?
  6. Are you the ideal Brilliant Earth customer?

1. What is Brilliant Earth’s story?

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The founders of Brilliant Earth, Beth Gerstein and Eric Grossberg, created the company in 2005 after reaching a dead end in their search for a diamond engagement ring ethically sourced. They discovered that there was a gap in the market for these kinds of products.

The diamond industry cannot fault Brilliant Earth’s marketing claims. According to the statement on their site, they not only claim to create beautiful jewelry, but to do so in an ethical, eco-friendly, and sustainable manner.

Their trademarked Beyond Conflict FreeTM diamonds are aimed at cultivating a more responsible, transparent, and green jewelry industry. We can’t argue with that. 

In addition to environmentally conscious practices, they promote the growth of the Brilliant Earth foundation that promotes growth and provides support to organizations around the globe. The foundation has doubled its contributions since 2020.

Brilliant Earth first acquired its ethical diamonds from Canadian Mines. This strategy has since been extended to Namibia and Botswana after the company concluded that its diamonds met the company’s ethical standards.

Unique to the company is how they source their diamonds, their supplier diligence, and the criteria that they have for suppliers. In fact, they go beyond the Kimberly Process. Only 1% of diamond suppliers are compliant with the industry’s highest standards of traceability, and Brilliant Earth surpasses that. 

2. What is most appealing about Brilliant Earth?

 

Grading Authority

Buying from Brilliant Earth means you’re getting diamonds certified and verified by industry leaders, from the International Gemological Institute (IGI), Gemological Institute of America (GIA), American Gem Society (AGS), Gem Certification & Assurance Lab (GCAL), HRD, and Sustainably Rated. 

No diamond sold by Brilliant Earth could be considered low quality, that’s for sure.

The ability to image diamonds is incredibly important, and while every diamond is unique, not all diamonds are created equal. Because of this, it is crucial to be able to view the light performance as well as the diagnostic images of the diamond you are about to buy. 

Though not all of Brilliant Earth’s diamonds are equipped with light performance and diagnostic images, like ASET maps, ideal scopes, HD videos and hearts; they will happily provide ASET maps and ideal scopes upon request.

Blue Nile and James Allen do not offer images with this level of light performance, but Whiteflash currently offers the greatest selection and depth if you wish to feel incredibly informed in your purchase. Throughout the years, we have worked with these premium brands that offer diamonds with exceedingly high cut quality.

It is recommended that the diamonds in your ring come with all the appropriate certifications, pictures, and specifications to make an informed purchase decision. Check out our vast inventory of loose diamonds with all the specifications you need and select the diamond that meets your needs.

Variety

The unique value proposition of Brilliant Earth is its pledge to “Beyond Conflict Free”. Their diamonds are claimed to adhere to five notable standards: they do not finance civil wars (conflict diamonds), they are free of human rights abuses, are environmentally responsible, mined using fair labor practices, and finally, they’re involved in community development through the mining activities.

Brilliant Earth offers 5 different categories of diamonds:

  • Lab-Grown Diamonds
  • DeBeers sourced diamonds purchased in Botswana
  • Canadian Diamonds
  • Recycled Diamonds

Lab-Grown Diamonds

Brilliant Earth’s claims regarding its “higher ethical standard” may be overstated. In any case, we know for sure (from the comparison of lab-grown diamonds) that their enormous premiums cannot be justified by those claims alone.

Botswana Diamonds

According to Brilliant Earth, when you buy a diamond from a regular vendor who hasn’t tracked the diamond’s origin, you might be buying one that was mined in an artisanal mine, which might be tainted by a human rights violation.

Purchasing a “Botswana Sort” diamond does not only alleviate that concern, but also contributes to sustainable diamond mining, which provides meaningful benefits to the local community.

While they say they audit their suppliers, we’re unsure how thorough these audits are. Additionally, they are static events in time by their very nature.

Canadian Diamonds

Diamonds from Canada are tracked from mine to store, thanks to their inscribed inscriptions. Known as CanadaMark diamonds, these diamonds are regulated by the Canadian Diamonds Code of Conduct (CDCC).

You can therefore trust that a store listing Canadian diamonds is, in most cases, correct. Strangely, though, while Brilliant Earth lists Canadian diamonds, they do not offer traceable CanadaMark diamonds.

Recycled Diamonds

There is no better way to reduce your diamond’s ethical and environmental footprint than to buy a diamond that someone else no longer wants. However, just be wary you are paying for the privilege and you could get the same quality diamond, new, from another retailer for less. 

For our environmentally conscious consumers, the extra cost might be worth it to you to live by your commitment – regardless of price. From our experience, competitors will be able to offer similar claims at a lower cost. 

In fact, Whiteflash run several social responsibility programs and Blue Nile also promote Ethical diamond sourcing and responsible mining. 

Ease of Use

As a whole, the Brilliant Earth website offers a straightforward process and a smooth user journey. Everything is broken down clearly, and navigation is easy.

In addition to the education section, they have a helpful diamond buying guide, as well as information on their name, their mission, and conflicts around the world.

Depending on what diamond is selected, certain rings may be more expensive when combined with the ring itself. Pricing fluctuates across certain categories and depending on the type of diamond selected – nothing new here.

The diamond filtering options available through Brilliant Earth allow you to easily view and adjust search criteria to find a diamond that will fit your budget, without compromising quality. 

You may wish to review and compare some of our vendor recommendations before making any purchases. With their intuitive selection process and a broad inventory, Whiteflash, Blue Nile and James Allen offer the most comprehensive diamond shopping experience online.

The Selection

Brilliant Earth offers a pretty slick custom design option. It’s smooth, and easy for any user to follow. It allows you to easily select the setting and diamond of your ring. You have several options, including the design style, cut, precious metal, carat, shape, and price limit.

Anyone interested in customizing their own diamond ring will find this service especially useful because of the many options available – there is never too much choice when it comes to choosing the perfect ring to pop the question with. 

Brilliant Earth doesn’t stop with ethical stones. All their gold and platinum jewelry have been recycled from old jewelry or industrial and electrical products.

Vintage-inspired and nature-inspired designs are popular, but you can also melt down your own rings to be remade into an entirely new design. There’s no shortage of options that’s for sure.

The Experience

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Throughout the Brilliant Earth website, their ‘Beyond Conflict Free’ and eco-friendly goals seamlessly weave in with their well-organized and easy-to-use design. Functionally, it’s great, and it provides a wealth of information regarding both diamonds and the Brilliant Earth mission.

As a whole, the shopping experience with Brilliant Earth is easy, smooth, and secure. With plenty of options, it is easy to narrow down the diamonds available to find the one that perfectly fits your requirements. 

It offers a great collection of imagery, as I mentioned previously. One of its cool features is the ability to adjust skin tone. When you aren’t sure which color metal looks best on you, this is very helpful.

Your choice of diamond ring can be added to your shopping bag simply, or even saved to a wish list so you can access it later. Since there is no need to create an account to purchase diamonds, it’s quick and easy to make your purchase. 

Moreover, if you live in the US, Canada, or Australia, you can have the item sent to your address for free, or you can pick it up from a nearby showroom.

Those who prefer to visit a physical store can schedule a jewelry consultation at any of their 14 stores.

It is possible to virtually try on rings from your phone if you do not live near a Brilliant Earth showroom. They also offer convenient virtual appointments that let you get expert advice at your convenience, a private 50-min Zoom appointment with a jewelry specialist.

The session is completely tailored, so you can ask anything about jewelry, the 4Cs, and gemstone education. You are under no obligation to buy, so there’s no harm in hearing them out and getting some free advice. 

With so much information online about diamonds and jewelry, it can be difficult to navigate and know what is accurate. PriceScope offers an easy-to-use online resource for diamond consumers, backed by a team of diamond and jewelry experts.

3. What diamond and jewelry products does Brilliant Earth offer?

 

Lab-grown diamonds have their place in the diamond industry, and this is where Brilliant Earth stands out to us.

They have a vast selection, and diamonds made this way are free from mining, have the same physical properties as real diamonds, and are less expensive. If you’re on a tight budget but still want to experience the benefits of a diamond, this is a great option. 

Among Brilliant Earth’s high-end, ethical jewelry offerings are:

4. What sets Brilliant Earth apart from others?

Commitment: Whether or not this is unique, the company’s commitment to conflict-free diamonds should be appreciated, and they do a lot to positively impact diamond communities and the industry in general.

The philosophy of Brilliant Earth goes beyond conflict-free. That’s why we admire their mission. Also, we love the way they help mining communities. For donating 5% of their profits to organizations such as DDI, Brilliant Earth deserves much credit.

Great Warranties and Guarantees: Brilliant Earth has a comprehensive returns policy, with free 30-day returns and 60-day resizes. Also included is the cost of packaging and postage for US, Canadian, and Australian orders – both ways.

There are two types of lifetime guarantees, one allowing for diamond upgrades and another covering manufacturing defects.

Blockchain-enabled: Brilliant Earth is one of the first jewelers to offer blockchain-enabled diamonds on a mass scale, providing customers with traceability of a diamond’s origin and ownership. 

Surprise Proposal: You can propose with a temporary setting if you want the proposal to be a surprise, but want her to choose a setting she loves. Using their classic 18k white gold solitaire rings, Brilliant Earth can temporarily set the stone. During the first 60 days following purchase, you can exchange the temp setting for another, one that you and your betrothed both adore. 

5. What does Brilliant Earth’s packaging look like?

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Brilliant Earth aims to be as sustainable as possible – even down to the ring box and shipping packaging,

Natural wood from New Zealand is used to craft the elegant ring boxes. There is something naturalistic about them; they feel and smell as if they were just carved out of the forest, moments before your proposal.

It’s a contrast to say, Tiffany’s, but it is definitely iconic in its own right and very on-brand for Brilliant Earth and its ethos. It might even be our favorite part of the whole review. 

The shipping packages have been redesigned to decrease paper packaging usage, and all packaging materials are FSC certified, which ensures that the materials are responsibly managed forests and are low in carbon emissions. 

What’s better than a spectacular diamond ring? 

One that’s as ethical as can be, packaging and all. 

6. Are you the ideal Brilliant Earth customer?

Brilliant Earth deserves praise for its efforts to offer ethical consumers a place to purchase diamonds. However, we feel they can improve when it comes to pricing and light performance information.

In theory, recycled and lab-created diamonds are excellent, and definitely a must for the savvy, eco-conscious shopper of today. However, their prices should be lower than regular diamonds in order to be competitive, or risk pricing themselves out of the market.

You may not be able to find the lowest prices for diamonds here, but you will feel good about your purchase if their values align with yours, and that could be worth a few more hundred dollars to you.

There’s no doubt, however, that Brilliant Earth offers beautiful and unique settings. Perhaps this is another factor in your decision. Perhaps it truly boils down to what’s important to you. 

PriceScope allows you to research diamonds extensively before you purchase them. Being well informed and confident in your purchasing decisions begins with having our resources at your fingertips. 

In order to fully grasp the variety of diamonds available online, we recommend exploring our huge selection of loose diamonds, which provides the best cut quality and all the facts you need to make an informed decision.

Get fast answers to any question: Ask our community of unbiased independent helpers or use our diamond search to find your ideal diamond.

The information in this review is current, to the best of our knowledge, as of May, 2022.

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