The Four C's
Here at Sheiban Jewelers educating our customers before any diamond purchase is vital.
Let’s start with the 4 C’s. The 4C’s consist of Color, Cut, Clarity, and Carat Weight of a diamond. These attributes are important in evaluating diamond quality.
The allure of a particular diamond depends more on cut than anything else. Cut is determined by looking at a diamond’s proportions, symmetry and polish. A combination of these three attributes helps determine how well the diamond will interacts with light and how much light will be returned to the eye. On a properly cut stone the light will enter from the top of the diamond through the crown, reflecting off the pavilion and back up to the viewer. When a diamond is not cut properly some light leaks though the sides of the stone and results in dimmer appearance.
Diamond color is all about what you can’t see. GIA’s color-grading scale for diamonds is the industry standard. The scale begins with the letter D, representing colorless, and continues with increasing presence of color to the letter Z, or light yellow or brown. Each letter grade has a clearly defined range of color appearance. Diamonds are color-graded by comparing them to stones of known color under controlled lighting and precise viewing conditions. Many of these color distinctions are so subtle as to be invisible to the untrained eye. But these slight differences make a very big difference in diamond quality and price. (The exception to this is fancy-color diamonds, such as pinks and blues, which lie outside this color range.)
Because diamonds formed deep within the earth, under extreme heat and pressure, they often contain unique birthmarks, either internal (inclusions) or external (blemishes). Diamond clarity refers to the absence of these inclusions and blemishes. Diamonds without these birthmarks are rare, and rarity affects a diamond’s value. Using the GIA International Diamond Grading System™, diamonds are assigned a clarity grade that ranges from flawless (FL) to diamonds with obvious inclusions (I3). The GIA Clarity Scale contains 11 grades, with most diamonds falling into the VS (very slightly included) or SI (slightly included) categories.
Just as a dollar is divided into 100 pennies, a carat is divided into 100 points. For example, a 75-point diamond weighs 0.75 carats. But two diamonds of equal weight can have very different values depending on the other members of the Four C’s: clarity, color and cut.
When it comes to carat weight precision is crucial. Even a fraction of a carat can make a considerable difference in cost. Diamond weight is often measured to the hundred thousandths of a carat, and rounded to a hundredth of a carat. Diamond weights greater than one carat are expressed in carats and decimals. (For instance, a 1.05 ct. stone would be described as “one point oh five carats,” or “one oh five.”)
Here at Sheiban Jewelers each diamond is strictly and accurately graded for the color, cut, clarity, and carat weight. To meet The Sheiban Diamond standard each diamond must also be evaluated beyond the 4 C’s.