January 2017

Like? Share!

Diamonds in China: The New Diamond Retail Market

The ‘yen’ for diamonds, mainly for engagements, is a Western concept. It began in the US with a genius marketing campaign by DeBeers, and carried on through popular Hollywood culture, until diamonds really were considered a “girl’s best friend”. But recently, other countries whose local customs have never involved diamond engagement rings are now gravitating toward the traditional Western trend. This is particularly true of one country: diamonds in China have become all the rage, with modern day millennial women wanting diamonds for engagement rings and diamond accessories to dress up their outfits. The trend towards diamonds in China is so popular that even men want in on the action.

Diamonds in China: Millennial Women

Millennials are all about independence. Millennial women don’t necessarily wait for men to buy them diamonds, but tend to buy them for themselves. Women aged 18 to 34, defined by DeBeers as millennials, account for 68% of Chinese diamond sales, bringing a market value of $6.76 billion in 2015 alone. This emerging group has the potential to turn the diamond market around. In China alone, there are 220 million potential diamond consumers who are still years away from reaching their peak financial stage of life. By appealing to them now, the market for diamonds in China could help lift the appeal of diamonds, spurring the global market.

Bye, Bye Romance

For Chinese millennials, the concept of the diamond is strongly linked to fashion trends and pride in personal achievement. Experts in the industry believe that companies in China who base their business solely on the idea of marriage and romance will have trouble selling to millennials, and must evolve their marketing in order to improve sales. They may do this by developing brands and jewelry lines that focus exclusively on bridal, while providing a host of other diamond jewelry options that are not connected to getting engaged. Diamond and jewelry retailers are wanting to provide millennial customers with more modern, practical and fashionable designs, in addition to the diamond engagement ring. According to experts, the old notion that marriage – and the diamond – is forever no longer reflects reality.

China Embraces US Cultural Mores

Chinese women are exposed to US broadcasting, and their ideas of romance are different than they ever used to be. While many diamonds in China are sold to women seeking fashion statements, not romance, there is still a robust market for diamonds for engagements – and for this specific market, it seems the bigger the stone, the better. Recently a video made the social media rounds in China showing a man proposing to his girlfriend in public with an extravagant display that included flash mob dancers. The girlfriend at first appears excited, smiling and crying, until her boyfriend opens the ring box. She then covers her mouth and walks away without a word. Reporters who followed up on the video stated that the woman was upset that the diamond was under one carat in size.

Diamonds & Men, Diamonds & Technology

The interest of young Chinese women in diamonds may even be surpassing that of Western women. And, unlike in the West, diamonds in China are not just for women. According to a survey by DeBeers, 67% of Chinese men want diamonds as well. In addition, new mobile technologies enable diamond consumers to view the entire diamond story online, satisfying the Chinese millennial’s need for a hi-tech purchase experience, as well as for diamonds.

In spite of the tough global market conditions for diamonds, this new Chinese market indicates a resurgence for the industry. Now, jewelry retailers in Asia and worldwide must focus on how to advance their market appeal to the new generation of buyers.


Subscribe to the Diamond Blog

Get the latest technology, grading and retail news straight from the source, straight to your inbox.



World Famous Jewelers Series Part 6: Chopard

Once Upon a Time in Switzerland… Our tale begins in the village of Sonvilier, Switzerland where we find Louis-Ulysse Chopard, the second son of Félicien and Henriette Chopard. Félicien was a farmer but he encouraged his sons to enter the watchmaking trade. Louis Chopard had a talent for the craft and quickly built a reputation […]

World Famous Jewelers Series Part 5: Graff

Born to be a Jeweler: The Meteoric Rise of Laurence Graff When 15-year-old Laurence Graff began his first apprenticeship in a jewelry manufacturing warehouse in London, he never dreamed he’d be honored with the Order of the British Empire (OBE) by Queen Elizabeth in 2013. In fact, after three months working in the warehouse and […]

World Famous Jewelers Series Part 4: Boucheron

The Jeweler of Place Vendôme: How Frédéric Boucheron Got His Start Frédéric Boucheron always knew he wanted to be a jeweler. He was born in 1830 to a family of French clothiers, and at a young age he apprenticed himself under jeweler Jules Chaise. By the age of 14, he had completed his apprenticeship and […]

World Famous Jewelers Series Part 3: Faberge

The Man Who Created The Egg In 1885,   Tsar Alexander III commissioned Faberge to create an Easter egg as a gift for his wife, Empress Maria Fedorovna. With this simple gift, the Faberge Imperial Egg Collection was born. The first egg was called the Hen Egg. Inside a white enameled shell rested a solid gold […]

World Famous Jewelers Series Part 2: Tiffany & Co

The name Tiffany & Co. evokes thoughts of little blue boxes, glass lamp shades, and for those who know, the Super Bowl’s Vince Lombardi Trophy. The store is famous for its Tiffany setting engagement rings, chain bracelets with an engraved heart charm, and delicate pendant necklaces. Where did this legacy start? Who is the man […]

World Famous Jewelers: The Names Behind the Designs.

Part One: Harry Winston Tiffany & Co., Cartier, Harry Winston – all famous jewelers and household names. We see their designs on the red carpet, along with Boucheron, Fabergé, Piaget, and many more. These companies are more than just brand names; they were the passion and brainchild of people who loved high quality, stylish jewelry, […]

Rough diamond planning

Cloud Planning: Make Your Rough Planning Up to 10 Times Faster

Planning rough diamonds with Advisor™ software is a complex process that uses loads of computer processing power. Today, with Galaxy™ inclusion mapping technology, the number of rough polishing plans created by Advisor is essentially infinite. With various advanced options to choose from, such as triple planning, Best Value™, CAP and more, the rough planning software […]

Tension Viewer: Reducing the Risks of Rough Diamond Sawing

In addition to all types of inclusions and flaws, rough diamonds have internal tension or stress that occurs naturally as part of their structure. Developed over millions of years during the diamond’s unique formation process, the level and location of tension within a rough diamond varies from stone to stone. When cutting a rough diamond […]

New Software Release: Sarine Advisor™ 7.0 Rough Planning

Advisor™ rough planning software is used by manufacturers worldwide to effectively plan polished diamonds and maximize the achievable yield. Sarine recently released the latest version of the industry-leading software, Advisor 7.0. The release is packed with dozens of new, advanced features, the result of user feedback received from diamond planners working with Advisor all over […]

Advisor 6.0 New Feature: Scoop Planning

Advisor™ is Sarine’s flagship rough planning software product, and the most widely used program of its type. Since its initial development and launch in 1995, the Advisor program, together with the Galaxy™ inclusion mapping system, has become a staple software for diamond manufacturers worldwide. We’re launching the first product post of the Diamond Tech blog […]