Blue Nile Diamonds and GCAL Double Certification


Hi Liz,

I want a diamond that’s about 2-2.5 carat with F color, VS1/VS2 clarity and excellent cut, symmetry and polish with no fluorescence. I’d like to have a GIA certificate. Do I need a GCAL certificate too? What exactly is this?




Hello Mona,

I’m assuming you are referencing Blue Nile’s double certification of both GIA/AGS diamonds and a GCAL report. Blue Nile’s GCAL report has the following data:

    • Actual Size Photo (which consequently is so small, it offers no real value)
    • Laser Inscription Photo (unnecessary as any inscription can be verified through magnification)
    • Proportion Diagram (redundant data)
    • Enlarged Photomicrograph (small images with no added value)

The GCAL report from Blue Nile is really only a branded report that confirms that the original lab report is accurate, in most cases GIA or AGS. However, this is unnecessary as GIA and AGS are two of the highest regarded labs worldwide. Their consistency in grading is the very best. Therefore, the information found on the GCAL report is basically redundant information and used mainly as a sales gimmic. It simply isn’t necessary.

Furthermore, I’ve found many diamonds in Blue Nile’s inventory that would never be considered a hearts and arrows diamond, much less an ideal cut diamond. As a clear example, here’s a 2.12ct E VS1 Blue Nile Signature Diamond with a GCAL report that has a hearts and arrows image on it. Take a look at the GCAL image of the diamond here:

Blue Nile Enlarged Photomicrographs


With it’s corresponding hearts and arrows image here:

Blue Nile Hearts and Arrows

Do you see how in the photomicrograph the diamond has dark ‘paddles’ on several of the pointed arrows? This is a result of inaccurate cutting. This will translate to more dark contrast in the diamond and it will appear overly dark. In the Hearts and Arrows image found on the GCAL report this flaw is even more pronounced when looking at the shape of the hearts. Some of the hearts bleed into their corresponding V’s which makes the pattern appear obviously uneven and unsymmetrical. This goes directly against what Blue Nile claims that all their Blue Nile Signature Hearts and Arrows diamonds adhere to:

Blue Nile Signature Round Criteria

It’s actually laughable that Blue Nile claims to sell perfectly symmetrical hearts and completely uniform arrows when the example above easily disproves this. It is obvious that Blue Nile’s Signature diamond inventory is inconsistent with some having better/worse cuts than others.

Now, I’ve done a search from all of my approved diamond retailers. My favorite diamond for you would be this 2.01ct E VS1 for $48,489.00:

Brian Gavin Hearts and Arrows

This is a true super-ideal hearts and arrows diamond from a fifth generation diamond cutter. All of Brian Gavin Diamonds are consistent in their cut grade and light performance; selling only the most beautifully brilliant diamonds available. This diamond has everything that you want with no fluorescence. Perfectly eye-clean and shows great contrast patterning. It will face-up bright white and sparkle brilliantly.

This is much better value for money and a diamond that you’ll be very happy with. Please let me know if you have any questions!

Kind Regards,



Hello Liz,

Thank you so much for the diamond education! I would never have known the true differences of these diamonds, as you say Blue Nile is marketing them as perfect but they clearly are not! I will give this diamond considerable thought and will be sure to get back to you with any questions. Thanks once again, what a great thing you do!



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