It is important to know what your priorities are when purchasing a diamond. It's likely you don't have unlimited funds (and if you do have unlimited funds, my advice might change, so call me! :-), so you have to decide where to put your money. For instance, you might know you need a large diamond, and believe me, we get some men that KNOW their girlfriends want a big one. They will want to get the biggest stone they can afford, but they can't have a huge stone that is flawless (no inclusions) and colorless (D on the color scale), because that would cost a fortune.
No, we are not talking about blood diamonds here. I just want you to know that you might have to choose what to give up. Will you sacrifice color or clarity or cut, and prioritize Carat (size) ("She needs a 2 carat diamond!", poor bloke!). Or will you sacrifice clarity... and get a stone with "imperfections" or inclusions that are visible to the naked eye. That means, you can see the "spot" without 10x magnification. Sometimes it's so faint that only someone with eagle eyes (like me :-) can see it, or sometimes you can't see it until the stone gets dirty (surprise What's that in my diamond???)!
Or, you might sacrifice Cut, and get a stone with a big "spread" like the shallow cut stone to the left. When you sacrifice Cut, you lose sparkle, which is most apparent when the stone is dirty (like after a week or month of wear, depending on how dry the ring is kept). The lovely thing about diamonds is, with a well cut diamond, it will sparkle even when dirty.
Image from jcrs.com
What do I think about the cut? I'm so glad you asked! Well, the cut is the only thing that man does to a stone, and the light travels through the stone in a predictable, mathematical way, so I put a big value on an excellent cut. Why not let loose the most fire possible? By the way, you don't have to understand the charts, that's my job :-). I'm just making the point...
Then I say, give the girl something white (Honey, what is that yellowish tone I can see in my stone from the side?) but you don't have to spend your limited budget on a D-F (ok now the "trained diamond sales people" are fainting) when you can't really see ANY yellow in a G or H color stone. G-H-I = Value.
I say that an "I" colored diamond is border line, so if you are really trying to squeeze out a little larger stone with your moola, go I or even J.
Diamond Clarity from GIA.org
I spy with my eagle eye...so keep it eye clean. I love looking at inclusions under magnification. They are all so unique! Feathers and clouds and crystals and wisps, oh my!!! As a matter of fact, get to know your inclusions and no one can ever switch your diamond on you :-). But enjoy the fun with a loupe or a microscope, and let the sparkle rule the day when she is gazing at it on her hand. The last thing you want is her hyper focusing on where that little mark is... "wait, what's that, oh, I think I can see something... where is it... oh, it's on that side..." you get my drift. That means, SI1 or better. 99% of GIA certified SI1 clarity diamonds will be absolutely eye clean. So, SI1 or VS2 = value. An SI1 clarity diamond looks EXACTLY the same as a Flawless diamond to even the most highly trained diamond grader on the planet; you just can't see the difference without magnification.
Conscious Diamonds From Krikawa
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