Market Overview

Diamonds: Cut, Color, Clarity, Carat – The Four Cs You Should Know About


What does Cut, Color, Clarity, and Carat mean when it comes to diamonds? Let Luriya's expert appraiser, Fima Kandinov, explain the the four important Cs to take note of when buying or selling diamonds.

(PRWEB) August 06, 2018

Much like anything of value, buying and selling diamonds involve a great deal of research in order to avoid impulse buys and buyer's remorse. Factors such as a diamond's cut, color, clarity, and carat weight should all be considered in assessing a diamond's quality and its potential value. However, what does Cut, Color, Clarity, and Carat mean exactly? Luriya's expert appraiser, Fima Kandinov, explains the Four Cs of diamonds.

READ MORE: First Time Selling Gold? Here's A Quick Guide

Out of all the 4Cs, cut is the most important factor when evaluating a diamond's beauty. A diamond's cut is considered to have the greatest influence in its overall brilliance and luster. When addressing a diamond's cut, a grader will examine the diamond's shape and proportions, as these characteristics most affect the diamond's ability to reflect light, and thus shine. According to the American Gem Society Cut Grading System cut not only refers to the technical proportions of a diamond but also the diamond cutter's craftsmanship and the diamond's overall polish.

"In other words, the more precise the cut, the more beautiful the diamond is," says Luriya expert appraiser, Fima Kandinov. "Cut does not mean just putting a diamond inside a machine and letting it do its thing – it takes a specifically skilled diamond cutter to put a great deal of time and effort to adhere to strict geometric standards, and, most importantly, be willing to sacrifice weight to emphasize top-notch craftsmanship."

"The next C to take note of would be color," begins Kandinov. "Unknown to many, diamonds actually come in many hues. However, the rarest are still colorless diamonds."

According to the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), the value of diamond color is measured by the absence of color. The GIA grades colorless diamonds on a scale from D (colorless) to Z (yellow). However, there are also expensive diamonds that come in visible colors known as "fancy diamonds." When it comes to fancy color diamonds, the rarest and most valuable colors are saturated pinks, blues, and greens. Similarly, the GIA grades these fancy color diamonds on a scale from Z and higher.

The American Gem Society discusses diamond clarity by the amount of present internal characteristics called inclusions and the absence of external characteristics known as blemishes. In terms of rarity, diamonds without inclusions are extremely rare and laboratory-examined diamonds are scrutinized to determine the relative visibility of the internal and external characteristics in a diamond and their effect on a stone's overall visual clarity.

"In simpler terms, the fewer the inclusions or blemishes, the more desirable the diamond will be," says Kandinov. "The diamond's clarity scale originated because jewelers were using terms thatc could be easily misinterpreted. Having a standardized category and universal scale, as opposed to descriptive terms such as "included" or "clean," would help effectively communicate how precious a stone is and avoid confusion and misinterpretation."

"Of the 4 Cs, carat weight might just be the easiest factor to determine. Much like all other precious gems and stones, the weight of a diamond is expressed in carats. The heavier it is, the more precious it will be," says Kandinov. One carat equals one-fifth of a gram or 1/142 of an ounce. One carat is divided into 100 points, so a diamond weighing 3/4 carat has 75 points or .75 carats.

"In essence, a two-carat diamond does not automatically mean that you just double a one-carat diamond's price. There are other factors that make up a diamond's value such as overall quality and rarity," adds Kandinov.

All else being equal, diamond price increases with carat weight because larger diamonds require much more time and effort to cut and are, in general, rarer. Once clarity, color, and cut have been graded, a diamond's weight can be easily established to determine the overall value of a stone. More often than not, as a diamond's carat size increases – the variance in price also increases since other factors are usually indirectly affected by stone size. Additionally, according to Brilliant Earth, a general rule of thumb is that a diamond of double the weight costs around four times more.

"The same factors should be considered when you either buy or sell diamonds. Equipping yourself with enough information before going into any type of transaction is absolutely essential to avoid scammers. It is better to prevent these things from happening than to regret things in the end," concludes Kandinov.

Luriya buys, sells, and trades precious metals and gems of all kinds. From loose diamonds and diamond jewelry to gold coins and luxury watches, Luriya has developed a brand that is synonymous with New York's very own Diamond District. Headquartered on 47th street between 5th and 6th avenue in Manhattan, Luriya has been dealing with precious metals, diamonds, and fine jewelry for almost three decades. Their mission is to provide the best prices and service for customers seeking to buy or sell gold, diamonds, and/or fine jewelry items. For more information, visit or call 212-256-0025.

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