The 4C's are the internationally known standards for grading a diamond as put in place by the Global Institute of Diamonds (GIA). Carat, Clarity, Colour and Cut are what make up the characteristics you should pay attention to when shopping for a diamond. Here we break down each of these elements so you know exactly what to look out for.
Carat is a measurement of weight for diamonds, not size as is sometimes mistakenly believed. Carat weight affects the price of a diamond more than any other of the 4 C’s. The greater the weight of the diamond the greater its value. Carat is measured in cts or points. A carat is divided up into 100 points. Therefore a diamond that is 0.5cts is equivalent to 50 points.
A diamond that is twice the size of another can be as much as 4 times the price. Larger diamonds are discovered less often than smaller diamonds, which means large diamonds are more rare and therefore have greater value.
Tips for deciding on which carat diamond to buy
When deciding which diamond to buy there are a few things to consider:
Decide your budget based on how much you are comfortable with spending. We are always happy to help guide you with ways you can maximise your budget.
If your partner prefers larger items of jewellery, and you are working with a budget, you can purchase a larger diamond that is graded slightly lower in terms of clarity and colour. For example, a 0.50ct D VVS1 will be more expensive than a 0.70ct G SI1 (excellent value grade), even though it is smaller. Opt for the 0.70ct if you think your partner would prefer a larger carat weight over colour and clarity.
Slender fingers make smaller diamonds appear larger. A 1-carat diamond will seem proportionately large if worn by someone with very slim fingers.
And lastly, a little something to remember… do not confuse ‘carat weight’ with ‘carat/karat’ which is the method of determining the purity of gold (e.g. 18ct white gold, 18ct yellow gold).
The clarity of a diamond describes how flawless it is. Clarity is affected by the number of flaws or imperfections, which are known as inclusions. All Aariya Diamonds diamonds are clarity ‘SI2’ or above, which means these natural inclusions are completely invisible to the naked eye. You won’t see any marks in your diamond at all.
Inclusions are difficult to see when using a 10x magnification in good light, and are not visible with the naked eye. Any diamond graded between IF and VS should be sparkly and bright, and within these grades diamonds suffer no noticeable loss of brilliance through reduced clarity.
Any diamond in these grades will also be bright and sparkly. Untrained individuals will not see the difference between a VS and an SI graded diamond, either in terms of inclusions or brilliance, without using magnification.
A diamond can divide light into a spectrum of colours (like a prism). Colour in a diamond acts like a filter and diminishes the spectrum of colours emitted. The less colour in the diamond, the better the colour grade.
Grades of colour range from D, which is totally colourless, to Z, which is a pale yellow or brown colour. Diamonds that are ‘colourless’ (graded D, E or F) are very rare and demand premium prices. The untrained eye will find it very difficult to distinguish between D, E or F grades. G, H, I and J are ‘near colourless’ and represent excellent value for money. G and H are sometimes called ‘rare white’ and are the most sought after in the ‘near colourless’ group.
The majority of diamonds Aariya Diamonds used are colour ‘G’ or ‘H’ or above. As you can see, colour G is the 4th highest colour and top of the ‘near colourless’ group. This grade represents great value for money, as ‘colourless’ stones can be very expensive (less than 2% of all diamonds are graded as colour D).
When diamonds come from the earth, they look nothing like the polished and cut gems you expect to see in fine jewellery. A lot of work goes into turning these rough diamonds into perfect works of fiery brilliance. Cut and Shape are often confused – Shape refers to the outward appearance of the diamond (such as round, emerald, princess etc). Cut refers to the reflective qualities of the diamond.
When a diamond is well cut, light enters through the table of the diamond, travels to the pavilion and reflects from one side to the other before reflecting back out of the diamond through the table. This light creates a flashing effect that we know as brilliance/sparkle.
Cut is described with the following grades – Excellent, Very Good, Good, Fair and Poor. We’ve illustrated these cuts below to help visualise the grades.
It requires a trained eye to judge the quality of a diamond cut, and our in-house diamond graders are highly qualified professionals who only select diamonds that they grade as ‘Very Good’ or better.
Your diamond will be well cut, bright and sparkly, we guarantee it!