The 4 Cs, as they are known within the jewelry industry, are the standard way to measure the beauty, craftsmanship and value of a diamond.
The term “diamond cut” refers to the quality of a diamond’s proportions and symmetry. These elements determine how much light a diamond captures and reflects, and therefore how much it sparkles. This is a direct result of the skill of the craftsman who shaped and cut the diamond. There are four grades of diamond cut: Ideal, Very Good, Good and Poor. If you compare two diamonds of different cuts grades, you will see that the higher cut grade has significantly more sparkle. There will also be a difference in their prices, with the better cut grade commanding a higher price. Of the 4 Cs, cut is generally recognized as the most important, since it has the greatest impact on a diamond’s appearance and quality.
Flawless - No inclusions or surface blemishes under 10X magnification. Internally flawless - No inclusions under 10X magnification; either no surface blemishes, or insignificant surface blemishes that can be removed with minor polishing.
Very, very slightly included - Diamonds will have minor inclusion or blemishes that are difficult for even a trained gemologist to see.
Very slightly included - Minor inclusions or blemishes that are generally not visible to the naked eye. These inclusions are somewhat difficult to see with a trained eye and would be very difficult to see with an untrained eye under 10X magnification.
Slightly included - Inclusions that are easy for a trained eye to see under 10X magnification. These inclusions may be visible to the naked eye, although they are generally difficult to see with an untrained eye in stones under 1ct.
I1, I2, I3
Included - Inclusions that are very easy for a trained eye to see under 10X magnification. These inclusions are often visible to the naked eye and in the case of I3 diamonds the inclusions may affect the structural integrity of the stone as well as impacting its brilliance.
Carat is the measure of how much a diamond weighs. Carat is also related to size (how big a diamond looks), although it’s not the only factor that determines size. Depending on shape, weight distribution and cut quality, two diamonds with the same carat weight can be different sizes. It’s worth noting that some diamonds are cut solely with an emphasis on weight. These gems can sacrifice brilliance and symmetry in favor of delivering a larger carat figure. At Ritani, we recommend seeking a balance between cut and carat weight in order to ensure a symmetrical, brilliantly sparkling diamond.
TIf shopping for a diamond 1.25 carats or larger, opt for VS2 clarity or better, since inclusions are more noticeable in larger diamonds.
D,E,F - COLORLESS
The rarest and most valuable diamonds, these diamonds will exhibit virtually no color when viewed by a gemologist.
G,H,I,J - NEAR COLORLESS
These appear to be colorless when viewed face up by a gemologist, but will display a slight amount of color when viewed face down on a pure white background. This slight amount of color is generally not detectable to an untrained eye, especially after it has been set into a piece of jewlery.
K,L,M - FAINT
Diamonds in the K-M range generally have a very faint yellow tone to them, but well cut diamonds will still contain the brilliance and fire that make them beautiful and unique.
N,O,P,Q,R - VERY LIGHT
Diamonds in the N-R range generally have a very light yellow tone to them. S,T,U,V,W,X - LIGHT
Diamonds in the S-Z range generally have a yellow tone to them.