A Rossen Reports investigation has found that a number of department stores, including Macy's and JCPenney, are marketing gems filled with lead glass as "real" rubies.
Rossen Reports staffers, along with a professional gemologist, visited Lord & Taylor, Macy's, JCPenney, and Littman Jewelers, purchasing items that contained "rubies." Salespeople at all of the stores told them the rubies were "real," "natural," and "genuine." But when they sent their purchases to two different labs, all of them contained "high contents of lead glass."
One of the purchase rings was essentially "fish tank gravel," Christopher Smith, president of American Gemological Labs, told Today. Smith explained that lead glass includes air bubbles, while natural rubies don't have bubbles. He suggests shoppers have jewelry appraised by a gemologist to avoid being duped.
JCPenney and Lord & Taylor are offering refunds for "dissatisfied customers." Watch Today's report on the ruby investigation below. --Meghan DeMaria