Diamond Buying Guide
When looking for that perfect diamond generally the shape is narrowed down first. Although a round diamond is a classic to most people, there are many other shapes available. The other diamond shapes are spectacular with sparkling brilliance. The shape is one of personal taste and once that has been determined you can move into the 4 C's of the diamond.
The cut refers to the diamonds reflective qualities, not the shape. The cut significantly impacts the sparkle and brilliance of a diamond. Since the diamond sparkle is seen before the color, the cut is generally considered a diamonds most important attribute. The angles and finish of any diamond are what determine its ability to handle light, which leads to brilliance.
This refers to the presence or absence of color in white diamonds. Color is a result of the composition of the diamonds which will not change over time. The universal scale to measure color was created by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA). The scale ranges from D to Z in color.
Diamonds are unique which give them individuality. During crystallization, minerals can get trapped in the diamond. These characteristics, sometimes called inclusions or blemishes determine the clarity of the diamond. The number, color, size, and position of the characteristics affect the assessment of the clarity.
A carat is the unit of weight by which a diamond is measured. This is evaluated on a point system for the weight of a diamond. A one carat diamond is equivalent to 100 points; a half-carat diamond is fifty points and so on. There are acceptable weight ranges in every size of a diamond.
A certificate gives you a detailed scientific analysis of your diamond which is done by an impartial gemological institution, not the grading of the seller. There are many different gemological labs that are recognized and regarded in the jewelry industry such as GIA (Gemological Institute of America), EGL (European Gemological Laboratory), IGI (International Gemological Institute) and GSI (Gemological Science International).
Below is a detailed description of your Diamond Certificate:
- Description: Detail of what the diamond is set into.
- Certificate Number: This uniquely identifies your diamond. The lab keeps an internal copy of everything that is on the certificate, plus some additional information for their files. A duplicate certificate can be procured in the event of a
loss. The original certificate number must be known to request a
- Shape and Cut: Shapes include round, pear, heart, marquise, etc. It also details the cutting style.
- Measurements: The dimensions of the diamond listed as minimum diameter to maximum diameter times depth for round shapes and length times width times depth for fancy shapes.
- Weight: A one carat diamond is comprised of 100 points, like a 100 pennies equals a dollar. Therefore, 50 points is equal to a 1/2carat, and so on.
- Color Grade: Assesses the absence of color from colorless to light yellow, brown or gray when compared to a master set of color comparison diamonds or when subjected to a colormeter.
- Clarity: Assesses the absence of color from colorless to light yellow, brown or gray when compared to a master set of color comparison diamonds or when subjected to a colormeter.
- Finish: Finish grades represent the quality of the surface condition (polish) and the size, shape and placement of the facets, including the evenness of the outline (symmetry). Grades are given as excellent, very good, good, fair and poor.
- Comments: Graded in the mounting.
Our Policy on Conflict Diamonds
Please be advised that we fully support a policy of not purchasing diamonds illicitly seized and sold by rebel forces. Since it is not currently possible for retail jewelers to verify the country of origin of diamonds, we work closely with our diamond suppliers to ensure that they do not knowingly purchase diamonds from conflict areas. Accordingly, we ask them to commit that all diamonds sent to us have been purchased from legitimate sources not involved in funding conflict and in compliance with United Nations Resolutions. They guarantee us that these diamonds are conflict free, based on personal knowledge and/or by written guarantees provided by the supplier of these diamonds.