This is a comprehensive review of Clean Origin online jewelry store. You will get to know about:
- Who is Clean Origin?
- Important features
- Things that make Clean Origin different from other jewelers
- Likable things about Clean Origin
- Downsides of Clean Origin
- The prices of their diamonds and whether they are worth it
- And much more!
Let’s get started!
Clean Origin Review
Who is Clean Origin?
While shopping on the virtual streets, you will come across jewelry stores that sell all kinds of jewelry and those that concentrate on one line. Clean Origin is one of those few online jewelry stores that specialize in particular jewelry. You will find lab diamonds in plenty at Clean origin. Clean origin is a fairly new diamond seller, having joined the industry in 2017. This however does not downplay the fact that they are supported by diamond experts who have been in the industry for hundreds of years.
Clean Origin was founded by three people: Terry Burman(former CEO of Sterling Jewelers, Signet Jewelers and chairman of Zale Corporation), Ryan Bonifacino (former marketing officer and vice president of Alex and Ani brand), and Alexander Weindling (ex global marketer for Georg Jensen and experienced diamond merchant).
These three sat together to think about the future of the jewelry industry since it was left in the hands of the young generation. One thing they kept in mind is that the industry is trending towards cheap gemstones.
They had a great desire to tap into this market and thus Clean Origin was founded. They knew customers wanted to buy affordable jewelry from the convenience of their homes. Jewelry lovers want to buy jewelry online minus paying extra money to big jewelry corporations.
How Is Clean Origin Different From Other Online Jewelry Stores?
Clean Origin uses a targeted marketing strategy to sell its products. They seek to find out what Millennials and Generation Z population wants from the bridal market.
One of the emerging issues deals with the environment. A good quantity of natural diamonds, especially the ones that originate from some African countries are associated with conflict. You will hear them being referred to as “blood diamonds“. In some of these countries where the diamond is mined, the gemstones are sold and proceed used to fund wars and civil unrest. So it is in this regard that the Kimberley process was developed to ensure that customers buy diamonds that do not support such activities.
The main purpose of the Kimberley process is to ensure that diamonds that come to the store are completely conflict-free. However, the process is compromised sometimes. Because of the semi-transparent nature of the Kimberley process, Clean Origin decided to specialize in the sale of synthetic diamonds.
There is a lot of doubt about whether synthetic diamonds are real diamonds. Get to know here and now that lab diamonds are 100% real diamonds, the only difference is where they are sourced.
The value of lab diamonds is low compared to mined diamonds, this makes them cost less. Lab diamonds are the best choice for fiancés today as they are cheap and ethically approved.
Shopping at Clean Origin
How does shopping for jewelry at Clean Origin feel? Depending on the item you are shopping for, the process can be short, long, easy, or daunting. Here is what to expect from an average shopping spree.
1. Pick Loose Diamond Of Your Choice
Before you start, it is important to know that you will find colorless lab-created diamonds only as loose stones at Clean Origin. If you are a lover of fancy colored lab-created loose diamond stones, Brilliant Earth or James Allen are the best places to shop.
These two stores have a few collections of loose colored diamonds than other online jewelry retailers. There are some online stores that sell wholesome jewelry that have a much wider selection of diamonds than Clean Origin. This is most likely attributed to the fact that Clean Origin is still fairly new in the industry. This store has probably not familiarized as much with many other vendors like retailers who have been in business for many years. Remember, there are limited lab diamond manufacturers too.
Clean Origin has more than 2600 lab diamonds with different qualities for you to choose from. The slider makes the choice process even easier. You can choose any color, clarity, and shape of your preference. To make the process even fun, there is a little box for you to check in case you would like the hearts and arrow patterned diamonds.
2600 different diamonds to choose from might seem quite a lot. The truth is it is not. Why? If I want a marquise diamond, for example, Clean Origin only has 8 varieties for me to choose from. From these, I can’t get 1 carat stone. I hope this changes in the future.
To assess the shopping experience, I choose a diamond with the following specs: 1 carat, ideal cut, color grade I, and SI1 clarity grade from the hearts and arrow collection. The 360 view is very elaborate allowing me to see even the tiniest of features. I don’t know if you will need all these but it is certainly a good aspect for you to see the diamond from all angles.
I was able to toggle the diamond, move it back and forth in a loop, and even view it on a greyscale. This is particularly helpful if you want to see any inclusions that may not be visible in the normal view.
Unfortunately, the 360 view is not offered for all the diamonds, you only get to see the looped side when you click on the 360 view.
I was just thinking why would some diamonds have additional features and not others? Shouldn’t it be the same for all? Clean Origin’s catalog is small; they should have no problem ensuring that all diamonds have 360 views just like James Allen does.
Apart from the pictures, you also have details of the diamonds like length to width ratio and all the other parts of the diamond.
It is time now to pick the setting!
2. Choose Your Setting
At Clean Origin, you can buy diamonds as loose stones or simply add them to ring settings. For an online store, the ring settings here are expensive. The cheapest you can get costs $525 being a simple solitaire. You can get cheaper settings for about $190 at Blue Nile and James Allen. There are about 190 ring settings at Clean Origin including Classic, Vintage, Halo, Three-Stone Solitaire, and Pave.
These ring settings are in 14K with colors ranging from rose gold, yellow to white. 18K settings that you will find are only in yellow gold and white. You may be lucky to get platinum settings too. The good news is that for the small collection, they have unique ring settings. Check out the setting I have picked which is 14K yellow gold with accent diamonds as leaves.
I love this marvelous setting; it moves the side of the center stone leaving an effect of a blooming rose. You can get this Bloom Solitaire setting at $810 from the website.
There is one more page to visit before adding the loose diamonds I picked to the bloom solitaire setting: where I will see the specs of both the ring setting and the diamond. You can take the final look here and if all looks great go ahead and pick the setting.
3. Buying process
Having chosen the loose diamonds and the setting you want, it is time to deep your hand in the pocket.
On the checkout screen, you should see the diamond and setting in the cart. Check if you qualify for a discount in the green box so that you can apply directly from the page.
You can then pay for the jewelry using any of the different ways provided at the store. Choose if you want to pay with a debit or credit card or using your PayPal account. Unlike other online jewelry stores, Clean Origin does not have a financing plan but they do partner with Affirm. So you can take this advantage if you are short on funds.
Affirm offers 12, 18, and 24 months plan with each having a 20% APR. There are no interest-free plans like you would find in other online retailers’ financing plans.
4. Return Policy
Zales.com and Kay offer 60-day return policies for their jewelry. Blue Nile and James Allen offer 30-day return policies. Clean Origin stands out from all these with a unique return policy.
If you bought a ring from Clean Origin and it does not fit or you just don’t like it, you have 100 days to return it. The store offers 100-day return policy. If you have shopped in most places, this is so far the longest return policy you can get from an online jewelry store. Just imagine the level of confidence in product quality that Clean Origin has for it to offer you a return policy as long as this.
If you have to return a setting you picked earlier, simply email the store at firstname.lastname@example.org to initiate the return process.
Once that is done, you will get a free Fedex shipping label to put the jewelry in and return it. In this label, you must put in the packing slip that came with the jewelry, do not throw that away after the jewelry is delivered to you.
Any grading certificate for your diamonds should also be part of the return package. Failure to return this means Clean Origin has to re-certify the diamond in the lab. You know what comes with that, charges. You will incur the re-certification cost of as much as $150.
What Do Customers Like About Clean Origin?
Lab Manufactured Bridal Jewelry
Most online jewelry retail stores have similar ring settings for both lab diamonds and natural diamonds. You may find a wide selection of loose lab diamonds in the stores but the settings with accent stones have natural diamonds.
Clean Origin specializes in lab-created diamonds and therefore you are sure to find ring settings that contain diamond center stones too. You will not only find pure lab-grown diamond rings but also other bridal jewelry like wedding bands, bracelets, pendants, and lab grown diamond stud earrings. However, they do not have this bridal jewelry in colored tones whether real or lab-created. If you are short on cash, here is an entire lab-created bridal ensemble at a discounted price. This opportunity is rarely found in other online stores.
Like other online jewelry shops, on the last page, before you check out the Clean Origin website, you get a chance to put any promo cards that you may have. Here, discounts are not only given to the military but also students, teachers, veterans, nurses, responders, and government officers.
To verify your discount, you have to register through ID.Me just at your cart. It is an extra step that may help you save a little more.
Perfect Fit Collection
The Perfect Fit Collection is a range of styles of rings that have sides that are sculpted to perfectly fit your middle and pinky fingers. You will not find this collection in any other jewelry store: online or physical.
While some people prefer tightly fitting rings, others like them loose. Loose is okay only that the center stone will not always remain centered. This ring style is the best and most comfortable for people who actively use their hands or those who do rough kinds of jobs. This design prevents your ring from spinning. It also holds the ring in place ensuring that the center stone does not move while also remaining loose.
Downsides of Clean Origin
Just like any other store, Clean Origin has its downsides. There are several things that customers do not find appealing with this diamond seller.
Clean Origin offers its customers a manufacturing warranty. This is the kind of warranty that I like to call an escape. Big jewelry sellers like Brilliant Earth and Blue Nile also offer a manufacturing warranty and you may not think of it the way it sounds.
A manufacturing warranty means that if the diamond ring you bought has a design or craftsmanship defect, Clean origin will either replace or fit it. This means if the flaw is their own making, they will cater to the mess.
What most customers don’t understand is that regardless of the type of ring or jewelry you buy, where you buy from, which brand you pick, or how much you have paid for it, it will require maintenance or a routine basis. This will be more inevitable if you wear your jewelry on daily basis. The materials used to make rings are natural and are prone to wear, which you will need to repair.
If your favorite ring is white gold, you will need rhodium plating and redipping. Clean Origin does not cover this, meaning you have to take the ring to a local jeweler. Rhodium plating may cost you between $40 and $120. Redipping which is recommended at least once a year will cost you too. When the rings start to snag, prong re-tipping will be required, at a cost too. When the stones become loose, you will be forced to tighten. At the end of fifteen years, you realize you have spent well over $600 on the ring. Clean Origin leaves you to your own devices in case they created a wrong ring. The cost of maintenance for Clean Origin diamonds is high.
Clean Origin has lab-created diamonds whose value does not increase or remain the same, it depreciates. In other words, lab diamonds have no investment worth. Most of Clean Origin’s customers buy small centered stones which are cheap. As time goes by and bigger life events come, they move to more expensive rings. Unlike Whiteflash, Blue Nile, and James Allen, Clean Origin does not offer trade-ins.
A trade-in allows the customer to exchange their current ring for another ring of the same value or twice its value. Customers may also qualify to get up to 50% off on a new ring.
Lab diamonds have no resale value: they come at a cheap price and resell at even cheaper prices. There is no room for trading in jewelry at Clean Origin let alone upgrading. This may not be important for some customers but it is just a good way of attracting and retaining customers.
Clean Origin Diamond Pricing
Lab-created diamonds which are the specialty of Clean origin cost much less than natural diamonds of the same grading and quality. Let’s compare Clean Origin prices with James Allen’s (best value) prices. To be precise, the comparison is between my earlier picked Bloom Solitaire ring to a mined and lab-created similar ones from James Allen.
Keep in mind that a fraction of the cost may be different because of grading. GIA grades the natural diamonds at James Allen while the lab diamonds are graded by IGI. GIA grading system is quite expensive and therefore any jewelry that has its grading certificate is bound to cost more.
The James Allen natural diamond ring used for this price comparison is graded by IGI, so no need to worry about reporting as a factor in price. The image below shows 1.02 carats, I color grade, and SI1 clarity ring with an Excellent Cut from James Allen. It is identical to the one chosen earlier from Clean Origin.
There is a huge price difference between the two rings; over $2000 to buy the natural diamond. This is the main reason most customers prefer buying lab diamonds to mined diamonds. However, it is not always about the price, some people have justifiable reasons for preferring natural diamonds to synthetic diamonds.
Let’s proceed with the comparison between Clean Origin diamond and James Allen lab created diamond. The ring from James Allen has SI2 clarity since SI1 clarity was not available. Here it is.
Even with the lower clarity in mind, James Allen’s piece is still much more expensive by over $500. We can therefore conclude that lab diamonds bought from Clean origin are cheaper than those bought from any other store.
It is important to note that although there are differences in pricing there are several other factors that work together to bring out the best value in a diamond stone and not necessarily the price.
Clean Origin Review: Bottom Line
If you are looking for the best online store to buy synthetic diamonds, Clean Origin is the real deal. Their lab diamonds are cheaper than natural diamonds and even cheaper than the best-valued lab diamonds at James Allen.
All the jewelry from Clean Origin including bracelets, wedding bands, wedding rings, engagement rings, solitaire pendants, and solitaire earrings are created in the laboratory. This store only sells diamonds manufactured in the lab.
Many online jewelers have started selling lab diamonds in addition to their traditional mined diamonds because lab-created diamonds have recently gained liking. Clean Origin specializes in these types of diamonds taking every step to ensure quality. End your lab-created diamond shopping at clean Origin, you will get the best.