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The Diamond Guide

The 4-C's Of Diamond Buying


Buying a diamond can be a troublesome and expensive experience to a knowledgeable as well as novice bargain hunter! However, with the help of a reputed and knowledgeable firm such as Colonial it will be fun. The 5-C's (Cost, Carat, Cut, Color and Clarity) are the most common guides used for buying and selling diamonds. As a collectible, one diamond may appeal to one person and not to another. It is important that you choose a diamond that satisfies your taste.


When looking to buy a diamond, first determine what your price range or COST is. Stay away from companies that try to tell you what your cost should be based on i.e., monthly income. Your cost should be based solely on what you feel comfortable with. Most companies will allow you to upgrade your diamond in the future and give you a full credit for your original purchase.

One commonly asked question is how to figure the prices per carat of diamonds. The price of a diamond will reflect rarity factors as well as overhead expenses of the seller. Some rarity factors depend on size (larger is rarer than smaller), clarity (less imperfections are more uncommon), color (colorless is less frequent) and cut (good proportioning gives greater brilliance). Each of these factors are discussed below.


After determining your budget for your diamond purchase, the next is to determine what shape or CUT diamond you want. The most popular shape is the round diamond. Next are the marquise, pear, oval, and princess cuts. Basically, the less popular shapes can cost up to twice as much as the round diamonds.

The cut of a diamond is very important in determining the beauty of the stone. The cut comprises of the depth, width, various angles and proportion. A diamond has 58 facts (polished surfaces). When the cuts are placed precisely within certain mathematically calculated angle, light that enters the diamond will be reflected back out of the top in a brilliant prismatic result. The closer a diamond cutter comes to cutting a diamond to this ideal cut or proportion, the more pleasing it will be to the eye. That is why it is very important that your diamond is cut by an experienced cutter. If a diamond is cut too deep, the light will leak out of the bottom, and the diamond will look dark. If the diamond is cut too shallow, the light will leak out at the bottom, making it look watery. We at Colonial examines every diamond we purchase for the precise cut so that you will be pleased at your purchase.


Next, come the size of the diamond. The size of diamond is given in CARATS. The word "carat" originated from a natural unit of weight: the seeds of a carob tree. Diamonds were traditionally weighted against these seeds until the system was standardized to one carat at one-fifth of a gram. The carat is divided into 100 "points". So, a 25 point diamond weighs a quarter carat. We could take two diamonds that both weigh one carat, but one gemstone may look larger than the other depending on how flat or deep it is cut. The carat weight also affects the price. Larger diamonds are more rare, so the price per carat is higher for larger solitaire diamonds. So, a single 1 carat diamond will cost significantly more than 20, 5 point diamonds, although they both weigh 1 carat.


The COLOR of a diamond can range from while to yellow to brown. The whiter the diamond, the scarcer it is and, therefore, the more expensive it is. For a comparison of various diamond grading systems on color see our comparison chart.

Most diamonds, even though they appear to have no color, actually have slight tones of yellow or brown. The difference from one color grade to the next can be very subtle, but effect its value tremendously. As the color becomes easier to see, the less rare and valuable the diamond becomes.

On the other hand, if a diamond's color is so intense, it is labeled "fancy" and that stone can approach or sometimes even exceed the value of a colorless diamond. The "fancies" can naturally occur in blue, pink, and an array of hues. A totally colorless diamond will allow light to interact easily through it and will show a rainbow of colors dispersed through it.

See Also:

Comparison of Various Diamond Grading Systems - Color Comparison Chart


The CLARITY of a diamond describes the inclusions or imperfections in the stone. Items such as carbon spots, clouds, take away from the overall value of the diamond. For a comparison of various diamond grading systems and an explanation of the various terms used to define clarity, see our comparison chart.

It is extremely rare to find diamonds without inclusions. A diamond without any inclusions are called flawless. The fewer and smaller the inclusions are, the less likely that they will interfere with the passage of light through it, making the diamond more beautiful. Diamonds are graded for their clarity under ten power magnification (10X). The size, amount and location of the inclusions are all taken into consideration in determining the clarity grade of the diamond. The clarity ranges from F (Flawless) to I (Imperfect).

There are three major grading services that certify diamonds. They examine the diamonds with a microscope and plot out all of the imperfections in the stone. For a comparison of how they grade the color of a stone see the chart. For a comparison of how they rate clarity of a diamond, please see the table, which also describes the various terms used in describing the clarity of diamonds.

See Also:

Terms Used to Define Clarity - Comparative Chart
How Diamond Clarity Is Determined?

Other Factors:

(A) Certified Diamonds:

If you are a discriminating buyer who wants high value, then you should always request a certified diamond. That way, the size, color, and clarity are certifiably guaranteed. All you have to do is to hammer down a good deal!

(B) Reputable Dealers:

It is also important that you work with a reputable firm such as Colonial discount jewelers who had been in business for some time and has built up a good reputation with customers. Colonial had been in business for 75 years and comes with an impressive list of satisfied clients. The professionals at Colonial are eager to help you make the best selection for you. We know a satisfied customer is our best asset.

See Also:

Diamond Gifts from Specialgifts.com

Jewelry Gifts from Specialgifts.com


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