The 4 C’s of a diamond refers to the four main characteristics of Diamonds, which are: Cut, Color, Clarity, and Carat Weight. These four characteristics are what help classify, identify and determine the price of the Diamond. It is advisable that you make yourself familiar with the 4 characteristics of the diamond before you make your purchase.



Every diamond is a miracle of time and place and chance. Like snowflakes, no two are exactly alike. Until the middle of the twentieth century, there was no agreed-upon standard by which diamonds could be judged. GIA created the first, and now globally accepted standard for describing diamonds: Color, Clarity, Cut, and Carat Weight. Today, the 4Cs of Diamond Quality is the universal method for assessing the quality of any diamond, anywhere in the world. The creation of the Diamond 4Cs meant two very important things: diamond quality could be communicated in a universal language, and diamond customers could now know exactly what they were about to purchase

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A Diamond's Cut Unleashes Its Light 

Diamonds are renowned for their ability to transmit light and sparkle so intensely. We often think of a diamond's cut as shape (round, emerald, pear), but a diamond's cut grade is really about how well a diamond's facets interact with light.Precise artistry and workmanship are required to fashion a stone so its proportions, symmetry, and polish deliver the magnificent return of light only possible in a diamond.

 A diamond's cut is crucial to the stone's final beauty and value. And of all the diamond 4Cs, it is the most complex and technically difficult to analyze.
 To determine the cut grade of the standard round brilliant diamond - the shape that dominates the majority of diamond jewelry – GIA calculates the proportions of those facets that influence the diamond's face-up appearance. These proportions allow GIA to evaluate how successfully a diamond interacts with light to create desirable visual effects such as: 

Brightness: Internal and external white light reflected from a diamond

Fire: The scattering of white light into all the colors of the rainbow

Scintillation: The amount of sparkle a diamond produces, and the pattern of light and dark areas caused by reflections within the diamond

GIA's diamond cut grade also takes into account the design and craftsmanship of the diamond, including its weight relative to its diameter, its girdle thickness (which affects its durability), the symmetry of its facet arrangement, and the quality of polish on those facets.

The GIA Diamond Cut Scale for standard round brilliant diamonds in the D-to-Z diamond color range contains 5 grades ranging from Excellent to Poor                                                                                                                                       

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How does pavilion depth affect a diamond's cut?

The distance from the bottom of the girdle to the culet is the pavilion depth. A pavilion depth that's too shallow or too deep will allow light to escape from the side of the stone or leak out of the bottom. A well-cut diamond will direct more light through the crown. 


The Proportions, Symmetry and Finish of the diamond is referredto as Cut and plays the most important role in determining the diamond’s sparkle and brilliance. The cut has an enormous impact on the beauty and sparkle of the diamond. If the diamond is cut well, it will give the perfect balance of brilliance.


The diamond will look brighter and have more flashes of white light), dispersion (allows the stone to maximize light), and scintillation (sparkles). The most popular cut, which dominates the market, is the Round Brilliant Cut because it is the most superlative cut of any cut, and it’s symmetrical. The Brilliant cut diamond consists of 58 Facets, which stems from 33 Facets on the top called the Crown and 25 Facets on the base or point of the diamond called the Pavillion.


Fish Eyes: Brilliant cut diamonds that are cut with a shallow pavilion and a large table size are referred to Fish Eyes because it creates an “unattractive” fish eye effect; when viewed from the Crown and even worse this type of cut will produce a dull stone.


Nail Head: Brilliant cut diamonds with the pavilion cut too deep will produce lifeless, dark and dull looking diamond. For the diamond to sparkle at its brightest, the pavilion cannot be cut too shallow or too deep. A well-cut diamond allows light to penetrate easily through the table and travel through the stone where it is reflected from one side to the other before the light shines back to the viewer’s eyes.


In summary when considering purchasing a diamond the most important factor to consider is CUT as this determine a diamonds beauty and sparkle. Major labs use their own terminology when it comes to grading the cut of the Diamond.


For example, GIA uses the term “Excellent” for their top grade cut diamond followed by “Very Good”. HDR and GSL label their top grade cut Diamonds as “Very good”. Therefore, a top grade cut diamond would be label as “Excellent” by GIA and “Very Good” by HDR and GSL.


How Various Labs grade Diamonds:


GIA: Excellent - Very Good – Good – Fair – Poor


AGS: Ideal – Excellent – Very Good – Good – Fair – Poor


HDR: Very Good – Good –Medium – Fair – Poor


DCLA: Excellent – Very Good – Good – Medium – Poor


GSL: Very good - Good – Medium – Poor


Purchasing a diamond in the “Good” cut grade or above is highly recommended regardless, of which labs provide the certificate. Diamonds with cut grading “Medium”, “Fair” or “Poor” is not recommended for purchasing as diamond in this category are usually dull and lack brilliance and sparkle due to the poor alignment of their facets that causes the light to be misdirected. 

Diamond Clarity Refers to the Absence of Inclusions and Blemishes

Natural diamonds are the result of carbon exposed to tremendous heat and pressure deepin the earth. This process can result in a variety of internal characteristics called 'inclusions' and external characteristics called 'blemishes.'

Evaluating diamond clarity involves determining the number, size, relief, nature, and position of these characteristics, as well as how these affect the overall appearance of the stone. While no diamond is perfectly pure, the closer it comes, the higher its value.

The GIA Diamond Clarity Scale has 6 categories, some of which are divided, for a total of 11 specific grades
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  • Flawless (FL)
    No inclusions and no blemishes visible under 10x magnification
  • Internally Flawless (IF)
    No inclusions visible under 10x magnification
  • Very, Very Slightly Included (VVS1 and VVS2)
    Inclusions so slight they are difficult for a skilled grader to see under 10x magnification
  • Very Slightly Included (VS1 and VS2)
    Inclusions are observed with effort under 10x magnification, but can be characterized as minor
  • Slightly Included (SI1 and SI2)
    Inclusions are noticeable under 10x magnification
  • Included (I1, I2, and I3)
    Inclusions are obvious under 10x magnification which may affect transparency and brilliance
  • DG&CO. does not carry diamonds of this grade .

Many inclusions and blemishes are too tiny to be seen by anyone other than a trained diamond grader. To the naked eye, a VS1 and an SI2 diamond may look exactly the same, but these diamonds are quite different in terms of overall quality. This is why expert and accurate assessment of diamond clarity is extremely important.

We recommend you avoid buying I clarity diamond because the flaws are very visible and won’t hold much value. Make sure you buy a diamond that is GIA certified. In the certificate, you will see a diagram of your diamond with all the inclusions plotted in the diamond.

 This is most reassuring because you will know exactly what diamond you’re buying! This prevents diamond switching and gives you a feeling of security and peace of mind. 


How did the GIA Clarity Scale come to be?
Like the color scale, GIA's clarity grading system developed because jewelers were using terms that could be misinterpreted, "loupe clean" or "piqué™." Today, even if you buy a diamond somewhere else in the world, the jeweler will most likely use terms like VVS1 or SI2, even if his or her language is French or Japanese instead of English.
What causes inclusions?

Small crystals can become trapped in a diamond when it's forming. Sometimes as a crystal grows it can develop irregularities in its atomic structure.


Diamond carat weight is the measurement of how much a diamond weighs. A metric "carat" is defined as 200 milligrams.

Each carat can be subdivided into 100 'points.' This allows very precise measurements to the hundredth decimal place. A jeweler may describe the weight of a diamond below one carat by its 'points' alone. For instance, the jeweler may refer to a diamond that weighs 0.25 carats as a 'twenty-five pointer.' Diamond weights greater than one carat are expressed in carats and decimals. A 1.08 carat stone would be described as 'one point oh eight carats.'All else being equal, diamond price increases with diamond carat weight, because larger diamonds are more rare and more desirable. But two diamonds of equal carat weight can have very different values (and prices) depending on three other factors of the diamond 4Cs: ClarityColor, and Cut

It's important to remember that a diamond's value is determined using all of the 4Cs, not just carat weight.


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The carat weight that most women want in an engagement ring is a One Carat Diamond. From our experience, we find most young couple usually make a purchase of around the .50 CT and .75 CT due to their limited budget. However, an older couple will go for the higher carat weight between .75 CT to 1CT. Our recommendation when it comes to the carat weight consideration is to work within your budget however always try and get a little bit bigger diamond if you can. You will not regret it when you see your sweethearts face light up, it’ll be worth every penny. 


How did the carat system start?

The modern carat system started with the carob seed. Early gem traders used the small, uniform seeds as counterweights in their balance scales. The carat is the same gram weight in every corner of the world.

What are "magic sizes"?

Some weights are considered "magic sizes" – half carat, three-quarter carat, and carat. Visually, there's little difference between a 0.99 carat diamond and one that weighs a full carat. But the price differences between the two can be significant.