By: Barb H

Considered the hardest natural substance in the world, diamonds can be cut, shaped, and polished into some of the most unforgettable and stunning pieces of jewellery. When shopping for diamond jewellery it’s essential to know the five C’s of diamond buying.

1. Cut

The cut of a diamond is not the same as the shape of a diamond. Four types of cut help create the pathway for how light travels through the diamond and then back to your eye as the stone’s sparkle. The four diamond cuts are termed: ideal, fine, shallow, and deep. Combining the right cut with the right shape can create a brilliantly, luminescent sparkle.

2. Color

The “whiter” or more colorless the diamond, the more valuable the gem — unless it’s a fancy or colored diamond, which has its own classification system. The color system for diamonds goes from D to Z, with D, E, and F diamonds ranked as the colorless. A diamond with a color classification of S through Z will have a distinctively yellowish to light brown hue.

3. Clarity

Diamonds often have flaws like air bubble or scratches. These are called inclusions and affect the diamond’s clarity. the fewer the inclusions, the better the clarity and the more the valuable (and gorgeous) the diamond. Jewellers use a rating scale to determine clarity with “flawless” or no inclusions as the perfect diamond and ratings of I1 through I3 to indicate flaws that can be seen by the human eye.

4. Carat: Definition of the Month

The carat is a unit used to measure the weight of a diamond. One carat has 100 points, so a half-carat diamond is a 50-point diamond. According to the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) the term ‘carat’ derives from the word “keration, the Greek name for the carob tree whose seed was used for centuries as the standard of weighing precious stones.”

Fun Fact: The Cullinan diamond discovered in 1905 weighed 3,106 carats (ct.) and was considered the world’s largest rough diamond.

5. Certification

A diamond certification includes a gemological analysis of that particular diamond performed by a certified, independent laboratory of gemologists. The certification paper details the diamond’s cut, color, clarity, and carat as well as other distinguishing factors.

Have more questions about choosing the perfect diamond? Talk with one of our jewellery experts at The Den.