07 Jul Understanding Diamond Quality: Because Forever Matters
For most people, the very first time they seriously think about diamond prices is when they’re shopping for an engagement ring. The fact that even small stones can cost quite a bit makes it easy to wonder: exactly what am I paying so much money for? Diamond pricing is based on diamond quality and cutting. Not all diamonds are created equal: some are formed by nature much better than others and some are cut better as well. There’s a formalized grading process diamonds go through to determine how they are ranked in terms of quality, focused on four distinct factors: the diamond’s size, its color, clarity and cut, commonly referred to as the 4 Cs.
A diamond’s size is measured in carats.
The average size diamond for an engagement ring in Oklahoma City area is one carat; in other Cities, center stones tend to be a little larger. It is important to know that if you are looking at say a 1 carat round diamond, many can look larger or smaller than one another. This has to do will how well the diamond is cut. Given a weight of 1 carat a diamond can be ideal cut to have a diameter of 6.5mm and others can be much smaller in diameter and be much deeper, or look larger in diameter but be shallow. When diamonds vary in size but the weight in carats is the same the overall appearance of those diamonds will be substantial. Cutting is the one attribute of the diamond that is controlled by man not nature. Also certain engagement ring styles, such as two stone engagement rings and three stone engagement rings, group smaller diamonds together for a larger overall look.
Diamonds vary in color.
Diamond quality is graded on a scale that goes from D-Z, with the stones closest to the D end of the scale being considered of the highest or rarest quality. The color of diamonds stem from trace elements combined with carbon when they form. Every diamond is unique and will have differences. D- G color diamonds are white or do not reflect warmer colors. Diamonds that are H- J on color have a very slight tinge of yellow and are selected often due to being less pricey, K colors and lower become noticeably more saturated with yellow color.
Clarity refers to the presence or absence of inclusions or fingerprints formed in the diamond.
Diamonds with fewer, less visible inclusions are higher quality than those who have inclusions that can be seen through a loupe or by the naked eye. Diamond quality for engagement rings varies from flawless to imperfect. What’s important is to find the best diamond within your budget and know what you from a Jeweler that is transparent and offers accurately graded diamonds at the right prices.
People have been cutting diamonds for a very long period of time.
As technology got better and styles changed, it became possible to create more complex cuts that reflect more light and serve better in engagement rings than very old, traditional cuts. Diamond ratings are based on how well the cut is executed.
Nobody wants to skimp on their engagement ring diamond, but you don’t want to spend money foolishly either. Understanding the variables involved in determining diamond quality allows you to make smart choices based on your personal preferences and budget.
For example, if your heart is set on a large diamond, it may make sense to choose one that’s rated G-H for color and has inclusions that are only visible through a jeweler’s loupe. If on the other hand, size isn’t the top concern, you may choose a diamond that has a lower carat weight but superior color and clarity characteristics.
Your best bet, especially if you’re having a custom engagement ring handmade for you, is to work with an experienced jeweler who can explain the differences in person and show you examples of each type of diamond. That way you can make choices you’ll be proud of for a lifetime.