Two diamonds may at first glance look alike, but the truth is that they are very different. Although they may be of equal size, they may have very unequal values.
A Diamond has four characteristics, known as the 4 C’s – Cut, Colour, Clarity and Carat Weight. These 4 C’s will help you understand while buying a Diamond. It is the combination of these four factors that determines the value of a Diamond.
The quality of the cut determines the brilliance of a Diamond. It is the skill of the cutter that unlocks the natural beauty of a diamond, revealing all of its hidden fire and brilliance. Most Diamonds are cut with full 58 facets and it is important that these are cut to precise angles. A diamond that is cut well reflects light from one facet to another and then back out through the top of the diamond. Only a well cut diamond will really sparkle.
Most Diamonds when seen alone appear white, but most have a tint of colour, mainly yellow. Diamonds with no trace of colour at all are extremely rare and the closer they are to no colour, the more rare and valuable they will be. Also rare are diamonds with a strong pure colour that are called “fancies” and which are very valuable.
Diamonds were formed millions of years ago, deep within the earth under enormous heat and pressure. Consequently most diamonds contain tiny marks, known as inclusions, which make each stone unique. The inclusions don’t necessarily weaken the stone and when they don’t interfere with the passage of light they do not affect its beauty. The fewer and smaller the inclusions, the more valuable a diamond will be.
Diamond weight is measured in carats, and each carat is divided into 100 points. A carat is equal to one-fifth of a gram. It is the simplest of its characteristics to measure and from the earliest times it was used to calculate a diamond’s value.