Diamond Buying Guide
Planning to buy a diamond? We at Karat Patch Jewelers understand its importance and our guide below will make your diamond buying an easy and enjoyable experience.
The most important criteria that a jeweler uses while grading a diamond are Cut, Clarity, Color and Carat. These are commonly known as 4 C's of a diamond and will help determine how much a diamond is worth.
CUT - Most often a person gets confused and thinks cut is the shape of the diamond. However, it actually refers to the angles and proportions of a diamond. Diamond cut is considered the most important of the four Cs. That's why it is important to understand how it affects the properties and values of a diamond. Diamonds that are cut either too deep or too shallow can lose or leak light through the sides and bottom and will be less brilliant-and ultimately of less value. However, a well cut diamond is able to handle light better, creating more scintillation and more sparkle which leads to brilliance.
CLARITY - Diamonds are graded for clarity under 10x loupe magnification. Clarity ranges from flawless (perfect) to I (included). Below is the chart that certification societies have standardized for grading to describe the clarity of a diamond.
- F - Flawless: No internal or external flaws. Extremely rare.
- IF - Internally Flawless: no internal flaws, but may have minor flaws on the outside. Very rare.
- VVS1-VVS2 - Very, Very Slight Inclusions: Have very small inclusions. It's very difficult to detect inclusions under 10 x magnifications even by a trained gemologist. VVS1 inclusions can only be seen through the pavilion. VVS2 inclusions are more visible.
- VS1-VS2 - Very Slightly Included: Inclusions can only be seen with difficulty under 10x magnification. VS1 inclusions are harder to see than VS2.
- SI1-SI2 - Slightly Included: Inclusions easy to see under 10X magnification and might be visible to the naked eye
- I1-I2-I3 - Included: Inclusions visible to the human eye.
COLOR - A Diamond's color is usually referring to the presence or absence of color in white diamonds. Diamonds act as prisms and can divide light into a spectrum of colors and reflect this light as colorful flashes referred to as fire. The more colorless a diamond is the more colorful the fire will appear.
Diamond colors generally range from D - Z for white and yellow diamonds. D is the whitest. Around S they become "Fancy" yellow Diamonds.
CARAT - This is the weight in which a diamond is measured. One carat is equivalent to 200 milligrams. Sometimes one carat is referred to as 100 "points". So a diamond of 75 points weighs .75 carats. Carat-weight is the easiest of the 4C's to determine. But two diamonds of equal weight can have very unequal value, depending on their cut, color and clarity. Larger diamonds often cost more per carat due to their size. Diamond cost increases exponentially with an increase in weight because larger diamonds are more rare than smaller diamonds and this increases the value of a larger diamond.
- January - Garnet
- February - Amethyst
- March - Aquamarine
- April - Diamond
- May - Emerald
- June - Pearl
- July - Ruby
- August - Peridot
- September - Sapphire
- October - Opal
- November - Citrine
- December - Blue Topaz
Jewelry Care & repair
We know that jewelry is a great investment for you. This is why we would like to provide you with a Jewelry Care Guide that will help your jewelry last a lifetime. There are various things you can do to protect your investment:
- Start by bringing your jewelry to Karat Patch Jewelers regularly to have it checked for wear to prevent further damage.
- Each day it's advisable to wait until you have applied makeup, perfume and hairspray before putting on your jewelry.
- Before showering or swimming make sure you have removed all of your jewelry.
- Wrap your jewelry in a tissue or cloth separately while it is being stored and avoid using a leather case or plastic bags when you can.
- ALWAYS remove your jewelry when doing household or yard work.
- Cleaning your jewelry on your own is a good idea just remember to use a mild soap and water. This is an acceptable way to clean most jewelry.
- Make sure you NEVER USE BLEACH as it can destroy your jewelry. Also, never clean jewelry that is already damaged. Doing so may worsen the damage or completely destroy your piece.