The moment you pick up your ring from the store and find the ring on the counter, it’s time to take a closer look.
But if the ring is fake or has some flaws, it might not be your real one.
For starters, a ring doesn’t have to be real to be a fake.
Fake rings can be any type of ring that you want, including a fake ring made with an imitation of the real thing, a fake chain, or a fake cuff.
“There are different kinds of fake rings,” says Dr. Julie Lachlan, a plastic surgeon and author of How to Find Your Real Ring: A Guide to Identifying Fake Rings.
“You can buy a fake wedding ring that’s a little smaller, a wedding ring with a lot of holes, a birthday ring with lots of holes and a wedding band that’s just very badly made.”
The best way to determine if your fake ring is genuine is to look at it through a microscope.
That’s where Dr. Lachlang comes in.
She and her colleagues at the University of Western Australia (UWA) in Perth are trying to find the best ways to study different types of plastic.
“In this case, it was a plastic ring made out of carbon nanotubes, which are small, flexible and stretchy,” Dr. Driscoll says.
“So they are incredibly strong.
And they’re incredibly thin.
So the best way of knowing that is to actually look at them under a microscope.”
A ring made from carbon nanotexturesA ring of carbon nanoparticles.
The key to knowing if your artificial ring is real is to know how it was made.
Driscoll and her team analyzed the rings from different manufacturers and found that the rings they examined were all made from the same type of plastic: carbon nanosheets.
“What we found was that carbon nanostructures are extremely stable, which is important because they’re so strong and are really easy to handle,” Dr Lachlen says.
“So if you could take a thin sheet of carbon and just twist it around, that would probably break it up into the smallest parts, and you could put those pieces in a mould and you’d probably have something pretty good.”
So if a ring is made out for a specific purpose, Dr Laconell and her researchers recommend you inspect it for flaws before you buy it.
“It’s like if you bought a pair of shoes,” Dr Dr Lascall says.
“You’re going to inspect them for the toe, and the heel, and then you’re going a little further down the heel to the toe and then your next step is to inspect the toe.”
So you might ask, is this ring for real?
“Yes, it is,” Dr Maunsell says.
The next step to knowing whether your fake rings are real is a molecular level examination.
That way, Dr Mascall and her research team can compare them with the real ones to see if they match up.
A molecular level analysis of a fake diamond ring.
When you look at a ring that looks like a real diamond, the atoms of carbon Nanotubes are arranged in a very neat pattern.
But when you look into the ring, you can see that there’s more of a pattern of irregularity.
“That pattern of variation is what’s seen in a diamond,” Dr Tapp says.
For instance, the carbon nanite patterns are slightly different from the ones you’d see in a real, diamond-like diamond.
“When you think of a diamond, you’re thinking of that pattern, but the diamond is actually made up of different materials,” Dr Siegel says.
Each of those individual molecules are arranged like a diamond has four different colors.
The different colored carbon Nanotextules that make up a ring are also arranged in different ways, which makes it harder for a diamond to form.
“The diamonds carbon nanocrystals that make it up are really, really thin, and they can only have about 10,000 nanometers of surface area,” Dr Nesvig says.
So if you cut one of the Nanotube layers off, you’ll have an imperfect ring.
“This is the first step to figuring out if your real ring is actually fake,” Dr Zimmet says.