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Learn About Diamonds – The 4 C’s of a GIA diamond

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Guide to the 4 C’s of Diamond Quality

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The quality of a diamond is defined by means of the 4 C’s: Carat, Clarity, Color and Cut.  The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) created this globally accepted standard for describing diamonds.

These characteristics do not only determine a stone’s quality, they can also be very useful in identifying the diamond, since every diamond is unique.With a GIA Diamond Certificate, diamond customers know exactly what they are about to purchase.

CARAT

The weight of diamonds is expressed in carats.  One carat is equal to 0.20 gr. 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 diamond certificate or ID report, the weight is mentioned in up to two decimals.  Eg. 1.50 ct = 1 carat and 50 points… more about Carat

CLARITY

Pure flawless diamonds are extremely rare.  Almost all rough diamonds contain a variety of internal characteristics called “Inclusions” which are traces on non-diamond material that were “trapped” in the mineral during the stone’s formation.  External characteristics are called ‘blemishes.’

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 GIA diamond… more about Clarity

COLOR

Diamond color means lack of color. 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 GIA diamond 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

The proportions and finish grade of a GIA 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