Nothing says "I Love You" quite like a diamond does. Whether for yourself, a partner or even an extravagant gift for a friend, a piece of diamond jewellery is the perfect way to show you care. In this article discover exactly what diamond specifications mean, and how to get the best quality diamond on your budget. Diamond specifications, also known as "the four c's", cover cut, colour, clarity and carat weight.
Information about diamond specifications: "the four c's"
People often mistake this class as being the same as diamond shape. It is, however, not. The diamond's "shape" refers to the way it looks outwardly. Examples of cut would be "emerald", "pear" and "princess".
A diamond's cut is something different. It refers to the diamond's reflective qualities and definitely affects the way the diamond looks. A diamond with the best quality cut will sparkle the most.
The cut is perhaps the most important of the four c's. The angles at which the diamond are cut, affect its ability to process light, which ultimately affects its brilliance.
To refer to a diamond's colour is to refer to the presence or absence of any colour in the diamond. The best class in this category is "colourless", which allows the maximum amount of light to pass through it, enhancing its sparkle.
Clarity refers to the presence or absence of blemishes (also known as inclusions) within a diamond. A diamond of flawless clarity has no blemishes, and there are grades to identify everything else. F means a diamond is flawless, IF means that there may be a few surface blemishes but no internal flaws, VVS1 - VVS2 stand for very, very slightly included, in 2 grades. VS1 - VS2 stand for Very slightly included, in 2 grades whilst SI1 and SI2 indicate that blemishes are slightly included, in 2 grades. I1, I2 and I3 means that blemishes are included in 3 grades, sometimes to the naked eyes.
The "carat weight" of the diamond refers to the unit used to measure the weight of a diamond. Choosing a carat weight is a delicate balance of size vs. quality, as discussed below. Although diamonds of different shapes mean different measurements of carat weight, for a round diamond, a carat means about a 6.5 mm diameter.
Finding the right diamond for your budget
Although a diamond's size, as determined by its carat weight is important, it is not the be all and end all. A carat diamond with better cut, clarity and colour classifications is far preferable to a two-carat diamond of bad quality. To get the biggest diamond for your money, you can compromise a couple of grades on colour and clarity.