Choosing a Diamond; Color, Cut, Clarity and Carat
When you shop for a diamond it is extremely important to know how to evaluate a diamond’s worth. When choosing a diamond, following the
“4 C’s” criteria is an easy way to remember the characteristics that determine the quality and value of the diamond you choose:
4. Carat Weight
Below is an overview of the major characteristics of the 4C’s of diamonds:
Diamond Cut Grade
It is said that the cut of a diamond dramatically influences its fire and sparkle.
This is because the amount of light that a diamond refracts and reflects is determined by the diamond cut. The more precision with which the diamond is cut and polished the greater the diamond’s brilliance.
Of all the “4C’s of Diamonds”, cut is the one most directly influenced by man. Diamonds can be cut to a number of shapes depending on the nature and grade of the rough stone.
A well cut diamond is made up of perfectly placed “facets” and angles to maximize the diamond’s sparkle. Therefore, a diamond that is cut to proper proportions holds more value (and sparkle) than a diamond that is not.
1. Well Cut Diamond – Good proportions of facets and angles allow light to enter the diamond and reflect from one facet to another before the light is dispersed back through the crown or top of the diamond.
2. Poorly Cut Diamond – If the diamond is cut “too deep” the light escapes through the opposite side of the pavilion or bottom and if the diamond is cut “too shallow” the light escapes through the pavilion before it is reflected.
Difference Between Diamond Cut and Shape
Many people confuse cut with the shape of a diamond. While the shape is a matter of personal preference the cut is about cutting in faces at the right angles to capture the light and release the diamond’s beauty. When choosing a diamond, consider the following most popular diamond shapes:
- Round or Brilliant Cut Diamonds
- Marquise Shape Diamonds
- Oval Shaped diamond Diamonds
- Pear Shape Diamonds
- Heart Shaped Diamonds
- Emerald Cut Diamonds (Rectangle)
- Trillian Cut Diamonds(Triangle)
- Princess Cut Diamonds (Square)
Diamonds are naturally found in a wide range of colors, from faint brown or yellow diamonds to rare pink, blue, green and of course colorless or white diamonds.
Choosing a diamond color is a personal preference. Nearly all high quality fine diamonds appear colorless or near colorless to the untrained eye. However, there are subtle differences in the shades of color depending on the traces of other elements that are mixed with carbon when the diamond is formed.
To determine a diamond’s true color you must view the diamond from the side and compare it the Gemological Institute of America (GIA)’s predetermined Master Set. This color grading scale is the official diamond color grading scale and ranges from completely colorless (D) to light yellow (Z).
Inclusions in Diamonds & Diamond Clarity
Nearly all diamonds contain microscopic traces of non-crystallized carbon or small non-diamond crystals. To the naked eye most of these ‘inclusions’ (or flaws) may not be visible but when they are examined under a microscope, they can become fairly obvious.
The small inclusions (also referred to as occlusions), are nature’s fingerprint and help make each diamond unique; they do not mar or endanger the diamond’s beauty. However, when choosing diamonds, the fewer inclusions there are the rarer (and more valuable) the stone will be. A diamond free of interior and exterior occlusions is graded as flawless (FL) or internally flawless (IF).
Diamond Carat Weight
Just like all other precious stones the weight of a diamond is expressed in carats.
Originally the carat was a natural unit of weight as measured by the seed of a carob tree. Today the weight system is standardized and one carat is divided into 100 points. This means a diamond weighing 75 points is .75 carats or ¾ carats.
Choosing two diamonds of equal weight can still have very different values depending on the clarity, color and diamond cut. Large diamonds are rarer and thus more valuable. This is why a two-carat diamond can be more than double the price of a one-carat diamond of the same quality.
Ask Us About Diamonds for Sale
Just as all diamonds are different, so are all fine jewelers.
When choosing a diamond, you can trust the professionals at Keezing Kreations. We specialize in the finest quality diamonds in all shapes and sizes at very competitive prices and since there is no middleman, we pass the savings on to you. We also have a wide range of elegant, attractive diamond ring settings custom designed in both classic and contemporary jewelry designs.
For more information about choosing a diamond or to learn more about the 4 C’s of diamonds, talk to our owner Debra Keezing and let us help you to discover the world of custom handmade jewelry design.
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