Useful Information About Diamonds

Find answers to all your questions about everything from the importance of a diamond cut, to color, clarity, carats and more. Learn about different diamond shapes, prices, and how you can save money without compromising on quality.

 


Diamond Cut

Many people confuse diamond cut with the shape of a diamond. Unlike shape, diamond cut is the metric used to evaluate the precision and quality of the overall cutting itself. Diamond cut is the most complex of the 4 Cs, and not even the major labs agree on how to best measure the quality of a diamond’s cut. Diamond Cut usually takes into consideration 3 criteria: Proportions, Symmetry and Polish. Sometimes Light Performance or other tests can be used to also calculate the precision of the diamond cut.

 


Diamond Color

If this is your first time researching diamonds, you may be surprised to learn that these sought-after, natural gemstones come in many different colors and hues.

“Colorless” or “white” diamonds – the diamonds traditionally used for engagement rings, stud earrings and solitaire pendants – are evaluated on a color-grading scale developed by the GIA. It spans the alphabet from D to Z with D being colorless, and Z representing a light yellow tint. With colorless diamonds, the value is placed on how little color you can see, and this is determined by studying the diamond under controlled lighting and comparing it to the GIA's color scale. Incidentally, D-grade diamonds – that is, truly colorless diamonds – are extremely rare and valuable.


Diamond Clarity

The formation of a diamond is not a gentle process. Most diamonds are born in extreme circumstances from primeval carbon deep in the earth’s mantle at about 500,000 to 2 million feet below the surface. They are then shot up to the surface at supersonic speeds by eruptions inside the earth. These volcanoes are very small compared to ones like Mt. St. Helens or Stromboli off the coast of Sicily, but the magma originates much deeper, which is what enables the diamonds to be extracted and carried up through the earth. The extreme heat and pressure that diamonds undergo during their ascent can cause unique “birthmarks” that affect their clarity. These are referred to as inclusions when they are internal or blemishes when they appear on the diamond’s surface.

 


 

Diamond Carat Weight

A carat (ct.) is the unit of measurement specifically used to describe the weight of a diamond (or other gemstones). Its name comes from the carob seed – a small seed with a typically uniform weight that early gem traders used as counterweights for balancing their scales, according to the GIA. A single carat is equivalent to 0.2 grams, or 200 milligrams, and is divided into 100 points.

 


 

Diamond Shape

The most important factors in choosing a diamond stone is deciding on the shape that perfectly matches your style and looks beautiful on you. Your style may guide you to more traditional shapes such as the classic Round, Emerald or Asscher cuts or fancy shapes such as the Marquise, Heart or Pear.

 



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