diamond guide

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THE FOUR Cs

The Four Cs of diamond quality are the most important characteristics to understand prior to making a diamond purchase.

Understanding these qualities will empower you to choose a piece with knowledge and awareness of its value.


  1. CUT GRADE is the most important of The Four C’s. Contrary to common misconceptions, this grading system doesn’t directly refer to the shape of the diamond (eg. round, princess, oval). It refers to the quality of depth, angles and proportions in a cut in terms of how well it reflects light back to your eye.

    When a diamonds cut is ideal, the light that enters the diamond is reflected through the top of the diamond (table and crown) and back to the viewers eye - achieving optimum brilliance, fire and shine.

    When a diamond’s cut is too shallow, light escapes through the base of the diamond. When the cut is too deep, it escapes through the sides of the diamond. these factors result in a diamond with a duller appearance (even if the colour, carat weight and clarity is optimum).

  2. CARAT WEIGHT refers to the weight of the diamond (1ct = 0.2g). Generally speaking, the higher the carat weight, the more valuable the stone.

  3. COLOUR GRADE refers to the opacity of the stone colour.

    GIA’s (Gemmological institute of america) diamond colour grading scale extends from d-z: d being the highest grade, z being the lowest.

    The higher the colour grade, The less colour the diamond has. The lower the grade, the more apparent their pale yellow hues can become.

4. CLARITY GRADE is determined by the number of imperfections within a diamond (often referred to as ‘inclusions’). The size, quantity and placement of inclusions determines the grade a stone receives. See the clarity grading list below.

FL Flawless. Perfection, no inclusions or blemishes visible under 10x magnification.

IF Internally Flawless. No inclusions visible under 10x magnification

VVS1 & VVS2 Very, Very Slightly Included Inclusions are difficult for a grader to see under 10x magnification.

VS1 & VS2 Very Slightly Included Inclusions are minor and observed with effort under 10x magnification.

SI1 & SI2 Slightly Included Inclusions are noticeable under 10x magnification.

P1, P2 & P3 Pique/Included Inclusions are obvious under 10x magnification which may affect transparency and brilliance.