DIAMOND GUIDE: THE 4 Cs – UNDERSTAND DIAMONDS BETTER
The quality of a diamond is defined by means of the 4C’s: Carat, Clarity, Color and Cut. These characteristics do not only determine the stone’s quality, they can also be very useful in identifying the diamond, since every diamond is unique.
The weight of diamonds is expressed in carats. One carat is equal to 0.20gr. Diamond weight is also displayed in points. One carat is equal to 100 points. Thus a stone of e.g. 1.50 carat means it is 1 carat and 50 points.
On the certificate or ID report, the weight is mentioned in up to two decimals. E.g. 1.50 ct = 1 carat and 50 points… more about Carat….
Pure diamonds are extremely rare. Almost all rough diamonds contain impurities or
“Inclusions” which are traces on non-diamond material that were “trapped” in the mineral during the stone’s formation. Many inclusions are removed during the cleaving, sawing, cutting and polishing of the diamond.
The fewer inclusions or structure phenomena the stone displays, the higher the quality of the diamond… more about Clarity….
Over 90% of all gem diamonds have a basically yellowish color. The intensity can vary from nearly colorless, which is preferable, to decidedly yellow. The value of a white stone is higher than that of a yellowish stone. However, diamonds can also have a distinct orange, brown, pink, green or blue color. These color diamonds can be extremely valuable.
The color grade describes the color tones in a stone. D is perfectly colorless, which is rare and expensive. The color scale goes from D to Z and indicates yellow and brown tones. It takes a trained eye to distinguish between shades that are close together, but an untrained eye see the difference between shades that are several tones apart with a little practice… more about Color….
CUT (not to be confused with shape)
The proportions and finish grade of a diamond establish the quality of the cut. A good finish grade testifies to the workmanship of the diamond polisher. It refers to the symmetry of the facets and their overall finish. The best cut diamonds also have the right proportions between the different parts of the diamond. If these proportions are not optimal, the fire and brilliancy of the diamond are affected, and undesirable visual effects might occur. Apart from the most popular ’round brilliant’ cut, there are a range of other frequently used cuts, and one might also come across magnificent ‘fancy cut’ diamonds… more about Cut….