Anyone wanting to make an educated purchase of diamond jewelry needs at least a cursory understanding of the Four C’s. These are the criteria by which diamonds have been graded, and finally determine their worth. They are Cut, Color, Clarity and Carat weight. What follows is a short description to acquaint diamond shoppers with these vital benchmarks.
CARAT WEIGHT – Contrary to popular belief, a massive stone alone doesn’t a precious diamond make! While bigger can be better, it is not the only element. Each of the other C carry as much weight in the long run, and make certain to use the size as a variable, although not necessarily a determining one. A carat is truly a measurement of weight, not size, equivalent to 200 Milligrams.
COLOR – The less color the better. To put it differently, everything else being equal, a colorless diamond will be more valuable. Diamonds range in color from colorless to brown, and are rated by letter beginning with”D”,(colorless) to”Z”, (brown ) This depends upon special lighting, and doesn’t incorporate the”fancy colored diamonds”, since these are rated differently. In a nutshell, the clearer the better!
CLARITY – Another important characteristic of a diamond’s value is that it’s clarity. This addresses the size and number of any inclusions; little clouds, feathers, crystals or cavities noticeable under 10X magnification. The clarity grades are F-Flawless (extremely rare); IF-Internally Flawless; VVS1, VVS2- Very, Very Slightly Included; VS1, VS2 – Very Slightly Included; SI1, SI2- Slightly Included; and I1,I2,I3- Included. All you really have to know about this however, (besides your diamond’s grade) is that you shouldn’t have the ability to see any inclusions with the naked eye.
CUT – Many people today believe that the cut of a diamond refers to it’s shape. That isn’t so. It really refers to the way a diamond is shaped to refract light, thus enabling it to glow. This is quite an art and requires that every facet of the rock be cut at precise angles to one another, in the appropriate shape and size, to cause the desired effect. Each diamond shape has different dimensions for it’s particular measurements. There are eight basic shapes popular nowadays, and they are, in no specific order; heart, princess, pear, marquise, radiant, emerald, round and oblong.
Knowing these characteristics can make a diamond jewelry buy not as nerve-racking. You’re spending a whole lot of money; it is wonderful to know what you are spending it on!