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The 4 C’s of Diamond Grading Guide

This week I thought we’d discuss the four C’s of the International Diamond Grading System. These four C’s include: Color, Clarity, Cut, and Carat weight.

It wasn’t always that there existed a universal guideline for which gemstones could be graded. Back in the 1500s, merchants used to employ a varying amount of terms to describe the value of a diamond. The issue with this was that the terms utilized were vague and not very consistent. However, “carat” is still the same measurement of weight that was used both back then and today.

Beginning in the middle of the twentieth century, GIA established the first official standard for describing diamonds. Their universally accepted approach to evaluating diamonds has made communication regarding the assessment of diamonds to be eminently easier.

Cut: This determines the amount of sparkle a diamond will emanate. Cut is the absolute most significant aspect of a diamond.

Carat Weight: It is paramount that measurements are as precise as they can be. To ensure this, we measure to the hundredth decimal place. For example, a one carat diamond is recorded as 1.00 carat.

Color: We use an official scale that runs from D (colorless) all the way down to Z (accumulation of color). These differentiations are important because, although subtle, can inflict a vast difference in the quality and value of a stone.

Clarity: The clarity of a diamond depends on how it forms. During creation, most diamonds form inclusions which may affect the value of the diamond. They are considered to be a stone’s birthmark.