Learning about diamonds and what makes them beautiful begins with understanding the 4Cs – the characteristics of a diamond. The 4Cs stand for cut, carat weight, color and clarity. Learning about the 4Cs now will make your purchasing experience easier, more enjoyable, and far more rewarding. You will know the exact quality of the diamond you’re considering, and feel confident that you’re paying a fair price based upon its value.
Diamonds sold by reputable jewelers have been graded according to the 4Cs and come with written diamond certification. The grading gives you an objective way to compare the quality and price of one diamond with another. A smaller diamond – one with less carat weight – may actually be higher in price than a larger one because its cut, color and clarity are of greater quality. Each of the 4Cs are taken into account when determining the value.
People often refer to a diamond’s shape (round cut, princess cut, oval cut) as the cut, but cut is actually the craftsmanship applied in cutting, placing and polishing the facets of the diamond. A diamond master craftsman can release a diamond’s inner beauty by strategically placing the facets for optimal symmetry and maximum brilliance. A well-cut diamond – regardless of its shape – appears more alive with brilliance, catching the light and sparkling brightly as it’s moved. If a diamond is poorly cut, it will lack brilliance no matter the size, color and clarity. That is why it’s the most important of the 4Cs.
When a diamond is cut to optimal proportions, light enters through the top of the diamond, passes from one facet to another, and then reflects back out through the top of the diamond. If a diamond is cut too deep, the light which enters escapes through the sides of the diamond instead of back out through the top, losing brilliance. If the diamond is cut too shallow, too much light escapes through the bottom of the diamond, again losing brilliance. The placement of facets to achieve maximum brilliance requires the experience and skill of a diamond master craftsman. Facets of Fire Diamond master craftsmen take diamond cutting and brilliance to the next level by etching thousands of invisible nano-prisms onto the pavilion of a beautifully polished, natural diamond, like “facets within facets.” When white light passes through these nano-prisms, it releases a thrilling burst of color, known as a diamond’s fire. The result is an unimaginable level of colorful brilliance and sparkle that can be seen with the naked eye.
A diamond’s size is measured in carat weight. Each diamond carat is equal to 100 points. For example, a diamond that is a 1/2 carat can also be referred to as a 50-point diamond. But keep this in mind: a bigger diamond isn’t necessarily a more beautiful diamond. A two-carat diamond that is poorly cut is not nearly as beautiful as a smaller diamond, cut by a skilled diamond craftsman. Or, a diamond may be cut well, but have poor color and clarity. To be exceptionally beautiful, a diamond must be of high quality in all 4Cs.
Move both sliders to compare two diamond carat weights at one time.
Color actually refers to the colorlessness present in a diamond. It is determined completely by nature. From a traditional standpoint, the closer a white diamond is to being colorless, the more valuable and beautiful it is. Diamond color appears in a range from D to Z. Fine diamonds fall into the range from color grade D to I. Color grades D, E and F are considered colorless, making them rare.
A Facets of Fire Diamond is a near colorless, natural diamond. When light enters a Facets of Fire diamond, an unimaginable level of colorful brilliance, along with white brilliance is released due to an innovative patented cutting technique which etches thousands of nano-prisms onto the pavilion of the diamond.
Clarity is an indication of a diamond’s purity. When a rough diamond is extracted from carbon, deep beneath the earth, tiny traces of natural elements are almost always trapped inside. These elements are called inclusions, though sometimes referred to as birthmarks because they are formed naturally and are unique to each diamond.
Because most inclusions are not visible to the naked eye, a jeweler will use a magnifier known as a loupe to reveal a diamond’s inclusions. The fewer and smaller the inclusions, the greater the clarity and higher the value of the diamond.