Diamond Quality

The 4Cs: Clarity, Colour, Cut and Carat. These four factors are used to judge the quality and value of a diamond. They are used universally throughout the diamond industry as an effective communication tool when describing a gemstone. The factors outlined below are based on the Grading System established by the Gemological Institute of America.

Clarity

Highest Quality

Lowest Quality

There are two aspects that determine the clarity of a diamond. Inclusions refer to internal features within the stone and blemishes are irregularities that occur on its surface. The relative absence of these clarity characteristics defines a diamond’s clarity – from Flawless to Included.

Helpful tip:

When choosing a diamond for an engagement ring, aim for a minimum clarity grade of SI (slightly included). Diamonds within this range will not have inclusions that are eye visible and provide excellent value for your money. 

Colour

Although diamonds come in a wide variety of colours, the ones that range from D (colourless) to Z (light yellow/brown) fall within the normal colour range. Very slight differences in colour can drastically affect the value of a diamond.

Helpful tip:

When choosing a diamond for an engagement ring, it is best to stay within the D-H colour range. Diamonds with I colour grade or lower may show yellowish or brownish tones.  

Cut

A finished diamond’s proportions influence its interaction with light, which in turn impacts its overall beauty and appeal. A diamond with good proportions, symmetry and polish optimize lights performance and will appear bright, fiery and sparkling. 

Helpful tip:

The allure and beauty of a particular diamond depends more on cut quality than anything else. Only select diamonds with a cut grade of Very Good or better. 

Carat

*To show relative size difference; not to scale. 

The metric measurement unit used to describe the weight of a diamond. One carat is divided into 100 points. Abbreviated as “ct” and expressed as a decimal number (0.59 ct, 1.13 ct, etc.).

Helpful tip:

Some weights are considered “magic sizes”: half carat, three-quarter carat, one carat, etc. It's at these sizes that there is usually a substantial increase in price. A good way to save money is to, for example, purchase a 0.95 ct instead of 1.00 ct. The visual size difference will be neglible.

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