Diamonds are one of the earth’s most precious creations and today are used as symbols of love, commitment, and triumph. In the middle of the twentieth century, GIA developed the first classification system for describing diamonds, which is now accepted and adopted worldwide. We are here to make learning about these gemstones easier as we talk you through the 4Cs of diamonds Cut, Colour, Clarity and Carat Weight.

When purchasing diamonds, whether it be diamond rings, earrings or other diamond jewellery, it is essential to understand what to look for in the gemstone’s characteristics.

Why is diamond cut important?

We often think of a diamond’s cut as its shape (round, princess, pear, oval), but what it actually refers to is how well the diamond is cut in order for the facets to interact with the light in the best way. The sparkle of a diamond is determined by its proportions, symmetry and polish. Therefore, the cut is deemed the essential factor in ensuring the desirable brightness, fire, and scintillation in a diamond.

Diamond Cut scale

The cut of a diamond is graded from poor to excellent. When viewing the diamond through a proportion scope from the top, you should see eight perfectly formed arrows – this indicates an excellent cut. When viewing from the bottom, you should also see eight perfectly formed hearts.

What is the colour of a diamond?

When discussing the colour of a diamond, we are actually referring to the absence of colour. The perfect diamond will have no hue and will resemble a drop of clear water.

Diamond Colour scaleThe colour-grading system from D to Z measures the degree of colourlessness in a diamond, beginning at D (colourless) and ending at Z (light colour). At Laings, we typically work with diamonds that are near colourless and above. Differences in colour are so subtle, yet a significant factor in determining the value of your stone. Therefore, it is essential to have your diamond graded by expert gemological institutes.

What is the diamond clarity?

No two diamonds are the same, and we begin to learn about our diamonds unique personality when we look into its clarity. Clarity refers to the absence of inclusions, which are natural birthmarks in a diamond that occur during its formation.

Whilst extremely rare, the diamond clarity grade begins at flawless, referring to stones that have no visible inclusions under a 10x magnification. The scale ends at included where inclusions are clearly visible under a 10x magnification.

What is the importance of diamond carat weight?

The carat weight refers to the weight of the diamond and is not to be mistaken by the size. You may hear the carat weight being referred to in points. One carat is made up of 100 points, and therefore a 0.55 carat stone would be referred to often as fifty-five points.

Carat Weight from 5Cs of diamonds

The 5th C — Certificate

The final C refers to certification. The certificate will break down the 4 Cs discussed and give a detailed description of your diamond in reference to each. It is vital to have your certificate completed by an independent body, giving you peace of mind that your diamond has been graded in optimum conditions by a non-bias source. Most commonly, Laings work with the world renowned Gemological Institute of America (GIA) and the International Gemological Institute (IGI).

GIA diamond certificate

When purchasing a diamond at Laings, our experts are on hand to ensure you know everything you to need to make an informed decision, so be sure to ask our diamond specialists anything about your diamond.

View Laings full collection of engagement rings

Explore diamond rings at Laings

Thank you for taking the time to read our guide to the 4Cs. Follow our latest news on FacebookInstagramYouTube and Pinterest, or if you have any questions please get in touch at [email protected]