THE FOUR CS AT-A-GLANCE

Diamond Buying Guide – What are the 4Cs of a diamond—especially when it comes to diamond grading? Peter Yantzer, Executive Director of AGS Laboratories, explains in this quick, informative video. Learn about the different grades on an AGS Labs’ diamond grading report, and walk away with a better understanding of what gives a diamond its beauty and quality. This video will give you the information you need to buy a diamond with confidence when you go shopping for that special piece of jewelry!

Need a Primer you can carry around? Look below for the 4Cs of diamonds defined:

CUT

Of all the 4Cs, cut has the greatest effect on a diamond’s beauty. In determining the quality of the cut, the grader evaluates the cutter’s skill in the fashioning of the diamond; technology. The more precise the cut, the more captivating the diamond is to the eye.

diamond 4cs

COLOR

Gem-quality diamonds occur in many hues. In the range from colorless to light yellow or light brown. Colorless diamonds are the rarest. Other natural colors (Blue, Red, Pink for example) are known as fancy – their color grading is different than from white diamonds. Learn about colored diamonds trends.

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CLARITY

Diamonds can have internal characteristics known as inclusions or external characteristics known as blemishes. Diamonds without inclusions or blemishes are rare; however, most characteristics can only be seen with magnification.

CARAT

The carat is the diamond’s physical weight measured in metric carats. One carat equals 1/5 gram and is subdivided into 100 points. Carat weight is the most objective of the 4Cs. It involves no estimates, comparisons or judgments.

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HE FIFTH C: CERTIFICATES

The diamond certificate, which is sometimes called a grading report, is a complete evaluation of your diamond that has been performed by a qualified professional with the help of special gemological instruments. Each stone bears its own recognizable, individual characteristics, which is listed on the certificate.

Caring for your diamond jewelry keeps the diamonds looking their best and prevents them from being lost or damaged.

A regular, professional cleaning is recommended, usually every six months. Diamond jewelry can easily acquire a buildup of dirt, make-up and other materials that can diminish brightness, especially if it is worn every day. Howard’s Fine Jewelry store offers professional cleanings free of charge. Our Jewelry Consultants will also check for loose diamonds, bent or broken prongs or loose settings. Regular professional cleaning and inspections will also ensure your diamond warranty remains in effect.

At-Home Diamond Care

If you wear your diamond jewelry every day, you should clean it once a week. Ultrasonic cleaners are convenient and effective. However, you should avoid using an ultrasonic cleaner if your diamond has a serious crack or inclusion. The vibrations of these cleaners may enlarge such flaws.

If you choose not to use an ultrasonic cleaner, clean your diamond jewelry with a soft-bristled toothbrush and a clean liquid detergent. Rinse with fresh water and dry polish with a chamois or microfiber cloth.

Keep your diamonds looking new by following Diamond Do’s and Don’ts:

  • DO store your diamond jewelry separately in your jewelry box. Since diamonds scratch other diamonds, and can also scratch pearls and other gemstones, the optimum way to store diamonds is alone or in a soft pouch.
  • DON’T wear your diamond jewelry while doing activities like household chores, gardening or sports.  If you do, make sure your jeweler checks your item for loose or broken prongs regularly.
  • DO take your ring in for inspection and professional cleaning at least twice a year.
  • DON’T wear your diamond jewelry while applying lotions, makeup, hair sprays or perfumes. These chemicals can dull the sparkle of your diamond jewelry.>
  • DO insure your diamonds against loss or theft. A diamond engagement ring is an investment of both money and emotion. Your insurance company can provide a rider to cover any costly items such as an engagement ring or other diamond jewelry.