Whether you’re designing an engagement ring, a wedding ring, or any other piece of jewelry, there are few things that glitter quite like a diamond. However, when you’re looking at diamonds, you want to make sure that you’re getting the quality and kind of diamond that’s going to be an eye-pleaser, especially if it’s for a gift. As such, here’s what you should be looking at when buying a diamond, and what level of quality you might want to aim for.
A Glittering Guide For Diamond Buying Newbies
How important is carat?
Although carat might be the thing that you’ve heard the most about, it’s not really the most important thing when it comes to choosing the right diamond. Many would argue that cut and clarity are more important. However, the carat weight does make a difference as to how big the diamond looks. In general, the higher that number, the bigger a diamond is going to be. A good place of comparison is that a center stone is, on average, around 1.1 carats. Of course, you have to consider the stones around it, as well.
Getting the right cut
Perhaps more important to the visual design of the ring is the shape of the stone, or the cut, that you choose. There is a huge variety of different cuts to choose from and you should consider the design of the jewelry that it’s going to fit to make sure that you’re getting the right shape of the stone to fit it. Take a look at some of the most popular diamond cuts, including brilliant round, princess, oval, emerald, and so on, to see which best suits your needs. As with everything else in fashion, trends do go in and out of style, too.
Clarity is vital
When it comes to the “quality” of the diamond, what we are most typically talking about is its clarity. You can think of clarity as the purity of the gem. The finest diamonds in the world are of a “flawless” (or FL) grade, meaning they have literally no blemishes (also known as inclusions) that diminish their ability to reflect light that is detectable by professional grades. You don’t need to be flawless to be high quality, however, and VVS2 clarity diamonds tend to be just as pleasing to the eye. The VVS in this case stands for “very, very slightly included.)
What does “color grade” mean?
Surely, the color of the diamond that you want is “clear,” right? The color grade of the diamond doesn’t mean changing the color, so you would end up with a blue or green diamond. Rather, it’s how close the diamond is when it comes to appearing entirely transparent or “white.” There are grades all the way from D to Z, but everything on the scale from J and above tends to look clear enough. Below that and you can start to get a yellowish hue to the gem, which is typically not very desirable.
Of course, your needs for your diamonds are going to depend on what kind of jewelry you’re using it for, as well as your budget.