1. Shake Rattle and Roll!
Take off your ring. If you have normal hearing, shake the ring next to your ear. Often a loose diamond will have an audible "click" when shaken.
2. Tap It!
In a well-lit room, use a pencil or ballpoint pen and tap the diamond around its perimeter and in the center. If you can see it move, get that ring to a jeweler right away.
3. Get Around
Lay your diamond ring on a flat surface. If your ring 'used to be round' and now it's oval shaped, you may be putting pressure on your setting. Time to have it inspected.
4. Two's a Crowd
If you wear your set UNSOLDERED, your band might rub up against the base of the head and compromise the structural integrity. A flattened, matte surface is a dead giveaway... and it's particularly dangerous when that flattened area is right on the 'head' that holds your diamond.
If you wear a ring on your middle finger or pinky, it might bang against your setting, particularly if the ring fits loose on the base of your finger.
5. Snap a Chalk Line
Looking down at the diamond, your prongs should be EQUIDISTANT and the four or six prongs should be symmetrical. If one is cattywumpus, you may be in danger of losing your diamond.
6. Feel..Don't Look!
Feel those prongs--without looking at them. Just run your fingers over the top of your diamond. If you can barely feel those prongs, chances are, they are barely there!
7. Are You Playing 'Catch'?
If your prongs are catching your knit sweaters, tights or pantyhose, having a prong detailed is a cheap fix. Don't delay.
8. Check the Rim
Bezels can get thin, too. If your diamond is set in a thin rim of gold or platinum, look carefully at your bezel for signs of wear.
If you have an enlarged knuckle and your diamond ring is flipping around on your finger, it's more vulnerable to wear.
There are some nifty ways to improve a ring's fit over an enlarged, arthritic or injured knuckle. I'll blog about that soon...
10. It's Not as Good as Gold...
If you regularly swim or have a hot tub, be careful with gold settings.
CHLORINE COMPOUNDS DEGRADE GOLD! Chlorine doesn't affect platinum. You might discuss re-setting your center with your jeweler, or just leave your ring locked up if you regularly swim in chlorinated water.