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HOW TO KNOW A GOOD DIAMOND
When purchasing a Diamond, there are 4 criteria to think about. These are called the 4 “Cs”
Cut, Colour, Clarity and Carat Weight.
Rough Diamonds are quite unremarkable, it is only when they are put into the hands of a skilled and experienced cutter that their beauty is revealed.
Cutting and polishing can take anything from several hours to several months depending on the stone. Every Diamond is different. Cutters study the stone for several weeks before they decide how to cut it, carefully determining how to remove any inclusions without sacrificing too much weight. The cut shows the stone to its maximum advantage. It is the cut that enables a diamond to make the best use of light, once revealed it can capture light better than any other precious stone.
Most Diamonds used in jewellery appear to be 'white' or colourless, but there are actually very few totally colourless stones. The colour of the Diamond is important as the closer it is to being colourless, the more valuable it is likely to be. Coloured Diamonds are rare and extremely valuable, coming in all colours such as pink, blue, yellow, brown, green and even black.
Diamonds are graded according to their colour using an international standard scale. D-Z. D is exceptional white, Z is tinted colour. The easiest way to determine the colour is to place your Diamond next to one that has already been graded.
Diamonds are a natural stone and most develop natural inclusions, or natural characteristics, which appear during crystallisation. The type, number, size and position of these inclusions determine the clarity of the diamond, affecting the 'fire' and brilliance and therefore its value. Many variations in the clarity of a stone can only be detected by an expert after a very lengthy examination.
The clarity of a Diamond has a standard international grading, from flawless, which is a Diamond without external or internal flaws or blemishes, through the range of tiny and minor flaws or blemishes, to “included 3” which are Diamonds that lack transparency and contain dark inclusions visible to the naked eye.
As long as the inclusions do not affect the passage of light through the Diamond, they will not detract from its beauty.
The carat is the unit of weight for Diamonds. 1 carat = 0.2 gram. A carat is divided into 100 points. A 50 point Diamond weighs half a carat. The more the stone weighs, the rarer it is, and therefore generally it has a bigger value. Out of all the Diamonds mined every year, only 1 in every million weigh a carat or more.
It is easy to weigh an unset Diamond, however, it is more difficult to estimate the weight of the stone when it is mounted in a setting. It is important to note that although two Diamonds may weigh exactly the same, one may appear larger than another when mounted in a piece of jewellery. Small Diamonds may appear larger if the selected setting shows it off to a better advantage.
Every Diamond is unique so will vary from one Diamond to another.
- the larger the Diamond, the rarer it is
- the better the colour, the more valuable it is
- the greater purity, the more beautiful it is
- the better the cut, the closer to perfect it is