Diamonds Defined: The 5Cs
Diamonds Defined is an ongoing educational series providing you with all the knowledge needed to help with your diamond purchase. We offer the finest selection of sustainably created diamonds direct from our own foundry.
Choosing a diamond can be an overwhelming process but it doesn’t have to be daunting. Selecting the right stone begins with understanding the 5Cs and what makes one diamond better than another. The cut, color, carat and clarity determine a diamond’s value but prioritizing what’s most important in a stone is a personal preference.
A diamond’s cut refers to the arrangement of its facets. The cut is considered the most important of the 4Cs because it’s what delivers a diamond’s much-desired brilliance. When a diamond’s proportions are cut to exacting precisions, light enters and exits the diamond through the same surface, the table. Most diamonds are cut into one of three styles: brilliant (a mix of triangular and kite-shaped facets), step (composed of rectangular facets) or mixed (a combination of both brilliant and step cuts). Each cut is evaluated on the diamond’s “face-up” appearance, and its balance of proportions, durability, polish, and symmetry. Our cutting and polishing studios are full of true artisans and all of our sustainably created diamonds are inspected more than 1,300 times from when the diamond seed is placed into a reactor to the finished ring. All of our sustainably created diamonds are cut to perfect proportions and are graded on a scale ranging from Ideal to Excellent.
A diamond’s color refers to the absence of color. Diamonds come in a variety of hues, but truly colorless white diamonds are rare and most have a slight hint of yellow. Diamond color matters because it impacts the diamond’s overall appearance. Even the untrained eye is capable of discovering these variations. Consequently, color is a major indication of a diamond’s value. Diamonds are graded on an alphabet scale ranging from D (colorless) onward, with perfectly clear and colorless diamonds (D-F) being the most expensive and diamonds decreasing in value as they go further down the alphabet. All of our sustainably created diamonds are colorless or near colorless ranging from D-J on the color scale.
A diamond’s clarity refers to the visual purity of a diamond. It’s determined by the number of inclusions or imperfections in the diamond, and is difficult to notice without the help of a magnifier. These inclusions occur naturally during the diamond growth process and are what make each diamond unique. The internal spots and lines can affect how light passes through the stone, obstructing the refraction and return of light, and can impact how cloudy a diamond appears. Five factors are considered when assigning a diamond’s clarity grade. The size and number of imperfections, their position within the diamond, how they impact its durability, and the noticeable contrast between the imperfections and the diamond itself. All of our sustainably created diamonds are high clarity graded VS2 and above with no eye-visible inclusions to deliver maximum brilliance.
A diamond’s carat refers to its weight. One diamond carat is equal to 0.2 grams—roughly the weight of a paperclip. The most well-known “C” is significant because it can look different from diamond to diamond, and shape to shape. When it comes to carat weight, bigger isn’t always better because the way a diamond is cut is what influences its appearance. In fact, a higher carat diamond with a poor cut can appear smaller than a lower carat diamond with a high quality cut. Our cutting-edge technology, developed over years of research and development, allows us to create diamonds from less than a carat to more than 5 carats. All of our sustainably created diamonds are cut to maximize beauty at every carat weight.
Traditionally, a diamond’s value is based on the 4Cs, but we consider a diamond’s carbon footprint, the fifth ‘C’, to be just as important. Carbon footprint refers to the amount of carbon emission taking into consideration the diamond’s growth process, the footprint of employees, and daily operations. Our diamonds are sustainably grown by our foundry, Diamond Foundry, the world’s only diamond producer with zero carbon footprint. This achievement is made possible by utilizing hydropower, a clean renewable source of energy. Atomically identical to those mined from the earth, our sustainably created diamonds are a thoughtful reminder of your values and a symbol for a more ethical future.