4Cs of Diamond
There are four factors which determine a diamond's value: carat, clarity, color, and cut. These four factors are also known as the 4Cs. This guide will assist you in choosing the perfect ring for you or your loved ones. Everyone has a different taste in diamonds, just like in life…
Carat weight is one of the four factors which determine the price of the diamond. Diamonds larger than a carat are much rarer than smaller diamonds. Therefore, the price difference between a diamond that weighs one carat and a diamond that weighs 0.99 carats may be great. Diamonds are generally weighed on precision scales to get the most reliable results. Carat is internationally abbreviated as "CT". It is important to point out that carat only tells the diamond's weight, not its size.
Carat weight is adapted to the metric system. One carat equals to 200mg (1ct = 0.2gr.) or one-fifth (1/5) of a gram. Carat is the standard unit of weight for diamonds and other gemstones. Diamonds which weigh less than one carat are measured on a point system. 10 points equal to one-tenth of a carat (0.10CT).
The name carat comes from the Greek word keration, which means carob seed. In the ancient world, carob seeds were used by merchants to weigh small quantities. Seeds of the carob tree were the standard unit of measurement in those times. Later on, the carob tree seeds were used as a unit of weight in jewelry, especially when expressing the fineness of gold. In the modern world, carat is the unit of measurement used to weigh diamonds and precious or semi-precious gemstones.
While grading a diamond's clarity, its internal (inclusions) and external imperfections (blemishes) are inspected. The number, color, size, nature, and position of these inclusions and blemishes highly affect the value of a diamond.
Most valuable diamonds are ones that have no inclusions or blemishes visible under a 10x magnifying eye loupe. These diamonds are called flawless (FL) diamonds, and they are extremely rare. Diamonds which have no visible inclusions and only some mild blemishes are called internally flawless (IF) diamonds. Very Very Slightly Included (VVS1- VVS2) diamonds have mild inclusions and blemishes which are very hard to detect with a 10x magnifying eye loupe. Very Slightly Included (VS1- VS2) diamonds have small inclusions and blemishes which are typically not visible to the naked eye. Slightly Included (SI1 – SI2) diamonds have imperfections which can be seen with a 10x magnifying loupe, and they may sometimes be detected with the naked eye. Included (I1-I2-I3) diamonds have visible inclusions which are detectable with the unaided eye. The diamond clarity scale is provided below.
Flawless (FL): No inclusions or blemishes are present when observed by a professional grader using a 10x magnifying loupe.
Internally Flawless (IF): Only some mild blemishes are present, no inclusions are observed by a professional grader using a 10x magnifying loupe.
Very Very Slightly Included (VVS1 – VVS2): ): Inclusions are hard to detect by a professional grader using a 10x magnifying loupe.
Very Slightly Included (VS1 –VS2): Mild inclusions may be observed somewhat easily by a professional grader using a 10x magnifying loupe.
Slightly Included (SI1 – SI2): Has inclusions which may easily be detected by a professional grader using a 10x magnifying loupe, and sometimes with the unaided eye.
Included (I1 - I2 - I3): Inclusions are apparent to a professional grader using a 10x magnifying loupe, and to the naked eye.
During the diamond formation process, fractions of different elements may get trapped in the atomic structure of the diamond. This event is responsible for the color variety of diamonds. A diamond's color scale ranges from light yellow to colorless. The color scale of diamonds starts with the colorless "D" diamonds and goes all the way to light yellow "Z" color (light yellow) diamonds. The diamond color scale is provided below.
D – E – F (Colorless):Colorless diamonds are regarded as the most valuable, and rarest diamonds. Even though there are slight color differences between D, E and F color diamonds, they may only be observed by professionals in side by side comparison. All three may look the same to the unaided eye. D, E and F color diamonds should not be set on yellow metals since this would cancel out their colorlessness.
G – H – I – J (Near Colorless): Diamonds of this class may show very small traces of color. Since they are more common than D-F color diamonds, they have a significant price advantage to them. Diamonds of this class go best with platinum and white gold metals. Damalys Diamond does not recommend G-J color diamonds to be set on yellow metals.
K – L – M (Faint Yellow):Diamonds of this class have a faint yellow hue visible to the naked eye. Diamonds of this class may not appeal to everyone. While some people adore the warm yellow tint of K-M diamonds set in yellow gold, some may think that they have too much color for their taste.
VERY LIGHT COLOR
N - R (Very Light Color): N-R color diamonds have a yellow color which may easily be observed with the naked eye. Damalys Diamond does not offer diamonds of this class.
S – Z (Light Color):Diamonds of this class are generally not preferred because they show too much yellow color for a white diamond. Damalys Diamond does not offer diamonds of this class.
The eye taking brightness of a diamond highly depends on its cut. Better the cut, higher the brightness, and radiance. Diamond's ability to reflect and refract light determines the quality of its cut. It is important to point out that a diamond’s cut and shape are two different concepts. A diamond’s cut refers to the process of cutting a rough diamond in order to create the faceted form, and how the faceted diamond interacts with light. A diamond’s shape refers to its outward aspect. Diamonds may be found in shapes such as round, princess, marquise, emerald, oval, baguette, pear, and heart. The cut scale of a diamond is provided below.
Excellent:An excellent cut diamond displays extraordinary brightness and fire. Diamonds of this scale are the rarest, and the most valuable ones. This is the choice for you if you desire the best.
Very Good:In terms of light reflection and refraction, Very Good cut diamonds are close to excellent cut diamonds. If you would like an alternative with a more affordable price and good quality, Very Good is an optional choice.
Good:Diamonds of this grade display lower brightness and sparkle compared to higher grade diamonds. If you don't want to compromise on quality but want to save on price, Good is the choice for you.
FAIR & POOR
Fair & Poor: Fair and Poor cuts don't reflect the light as well as other. If you want your diamond to shine, these cuts are not recommended.