For centuries, people have revered diamonds for their beauty. Even today, diamonds are still one of the most expensive and intricate gemstones on earth. Gemstone dealers and jewelers classify diamonds using the four Cs — cut, carat, clarity, and color. Do you know why they matter? A piece of diamond jewelry can cost thousands of dollars. So, before parting ways with your money, you should know some basic facts about diamonds.
Each diamond is unique
Like snowflakes, diamonds are unique. They come in different sizes and shapes. Their internal properties vary, too. Some diamonds are whiter, while others appear brownish or yellowish. You can find clear diamonds like crystals, but some look cloudier.
The diamond industry has a standard way of grading every diamond gemstone. Several establishments certify gems, and they evaluate a diamond using the standard parameters listed below.
The cut of a diamond is the top parameter describing the proportion and symmetry of the stone. It considers whether the top or bottom of the stone is cut too shallow or too deep. When poorly cut, the diamond’s brilliance becomes lower. As a result, the stone may appear darker. Conversely, a diamond with an excellent cut will appear bright and radiant. You can read more at willyou.net/blog/4cs.
Diamonds have color, and the most valuable is the white or colorless diamond due to its scarcity. Colorless diamonds have either a D, E, or F classification. The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) assigns the color grade for every piece of diamond. But do not be confused because some diamonds have colors, such as yellow, blue, and pink, which have a different grade classification. The complete color grade chart for diamonds starts from D to Z, with D indicating that the diamond is colorless.
Carat is the unit of measurement that establishes the weight of the gem. One carat (ct) is 200 mg. The larger the stone, the more expensive it will be. However, the price of a piece of diamond jewelry will still depend on the other Cs.
Diamonds may have external marks or blemishes and internal features or inclusions. The GIA describes the diamond’s clarity by grain lines, clouds, cleavages, feathers, fractures, cracks, and crystals. These are the flaws affecting its clarity. If the diamond has fewer flaws, its price becomes higher. Despite lowering the cost of the stone, these natural flaws are also your assurance that the gemstone is authentic and genuine. The minute blemishes and inclusions will not affect how the diamond will look to the naked eye.
You can have your money’s worth for clarity if you get diamonds with SI1 or SI2 on the grading scale. Essentially, you should look at the locations of the inclusions or blemishes. If they are on the sides and the prongs can cover them when the stone is set, you will have an excellent piece of diamond jewelry that costs less.
The four Cs are critical when shopping for diamond jewelry. Although carat weight is vital, do not forget that cut, clarity, and color are indispensable to the gemstone’s quality too.