Are you wondering what are the 4 C’s of diamonds? Every diamond is unique and a miracle of time. Each diamond has specific qualities that establish its value. There was no standard to grade diamonds until the middle of the 20th century. GIA created the first standard, and now a global method, for grading diamonds. This process is referred to the “4 Cs” Color, Clarity, Cut and Carat Weight. The creation of the 4 Cs means two significant things: diamond quality can be communicated globally, and customers now know exactly what diamond jewelry quality they are purchasing.
The 4 C’s of Diamonds: Color, Clarity, Cut and Carat
#C1 Diamond Color
- The color evaluation is based on the absence of color.
- A chemically pure and structurally perfect diamond has no hue; just like a pure drop of water.
- The industries scale ranges from D-to-Z color. The scale begins with the letter D (which represents a colorless stone), and continues with increasing presence of color, to the letter Z.
- These color distinctions are so subtle that they are invisible to the untrained eye; however, these distinctions make a very big difference in diamond quality and price.
#C2 Diamond Clarity
- Diamonds are made by carbon exposed to incredible heat, and pressure deep in the earth.
- This process makes markings called ‘inclusions‘ on the inside of the stone, and called ‘blemishes‘ on the outside of the stone.
- Evaluating clarity includes the number, size, and position of these features, as well as how they affect the overall appearance of the stone. Since no diamond is perfectly pure, the closer it comes to it the higher the value.
- Many inclusions and blemishes are too miniscule to be seen by anyone other than a diamond grader. To the untrained eye, a VS1 and an SI2 diamond may look exactly the same, but these diamonds are quite different in terms of overall quality. This is why expert assessment is extremely important.
#C3 Diamond Cut
Diamonds are famous for their ability to transmit light and sparkle so intensely. We often think of a diamond’s cut as shape such as round, emerald, or pear. However, a diamond’s cut grade is how well the facets interact with light.
- symmetry, and
deliver the magnificent radiance of light only possible in a diamond.
The quality of cut is vital to the diamond’s beauty and value. Of all the 4Cs, this is the most complex and difficult to analyze. The GIA Cut Grading System for the standard round brilliant diamond evaluates seven components.
The first three are:
- fire, and
which consider the face-up appearance.
The remaining four are:
- weight ratio,
- polish, and
which evaluate the design and craftsmanship.
- A metric “carat” is defined as 200 milligrams.
- Each carat is subdivided into 100 ‘points.’
- A jeweler can describe the weight below one carat by its ‘points.’ For example, a diamond that weighs 0.25 carats is a ‘twenty-five pointer.’
- Diamond weights greater than one carat are expressed in carats and decimals. A 1.08 carat stone would be described as ‘one point oh eight carats.’
- Price increases with carat weight, because larger diamonds are rarer and more desirable. Nonetheless, two diamonds of equal carat weight can have different values (and prices) depending on three other factors within the 4Cs: Clarity, Color, and Cut.
- It’s important to remember that a diamond’s value is determined using all of the 4Cs, not just carat weight.
At Joseph’s Jewelry, we carry numerous diamond pieces catering to every budget, and desired style. We are here to help residents in Stuart, Palm City, Hobe Sound, Jensen Beach, Jupiter and Port St. Lucie to find your perfect jewelry piece, complete a jewelry set, or make a custom diamond jewelry design as unique as you are! We will also repair and restore your diamond jewelry pieces and watches whether or not they were purchased through us. Come in anytime to check out our unique diamond rings, pendants, bracelets, earrings, and Citizen Eco Drive watches in stock for a celebration, last-minute gift, or spontaneous surprise.