It’s no secret that diamonds can be found in a variety of gorgeous colours, from blue to black to yellow, but when talking about diamond colour it’s important to remember that you are referring to absence of colour within the stone. Grading the colour of a diamond assesses any natural tint found present within ‘white’ (or transparent) diamonds, which are the most popular choice of this infamous gemstone, and typically the most traditional choice for many engagement rings. Diamond colour is definitely a very important aspect to be considered before purchasing a diamond because the colour grade of your stone will largely affect the gems over all appearance and shine.
How Is Diamond Colour Assessed?
Due to their popularity, diamonds are a luxurious and expensive choice of stone, so diamond colour can only be graded by a professional diamond grader. The most universal system to grading diamond colour is the ‘D-Z Colour Grading System’, which was developed by the Gemological Institute of America. When it comes to understanding this scale, remember that less is definitely more and diamonds with no colour (transparent) rank the highest. The GIA scale starts with ‘D’ being the most flawless and transparent diamond, and ends with ‘Z’ being a diamond of true colour.
Diamonds that rank in the middle of the scale are considered slightly more undesirable as they are neither transparent nor of true colour. You will find that the stones on either side of the scale dramatically jump up in price!
Why Does The GIA Colour Grading System Start At ‘D’?
As explained on their website, “Before GIA universalized the D-to-Z Color Grading Scale, there was no clear standard to define what diamond colour is. A variety of other systems were used loosely, from A, B, and C (used without clear definition), to Arabic (0, 1, 2, 3) and Roman (I, II, III) numbers, to descriptive terms like “gem blue” or “blue white,” which are notorious for misinterpretation. So, the creators of the GIA Color Scale wanted to start fresh, without any association with earlier systems. Thus the GIA scale starts at the letter D. Very few people still cling to other grading systems, and no other system has the clarity and universal acceptance of the GIA scale.” – GIA website
Let’s Talk About Fluorescence:
Whilst diamond fluorescence is yet another massive subject, very simply put, some diamonds change colour slightly once exposed to UV light. This only applies to a small percentage of diamonds (around 25 – 35%), but it’s worth noting because it can alter the way your diamond looks when in natural daylight. Fluorescence in diamonds will be marked either None, Faint, Medium, Strong or Very Strong, and if fluorescence is found present within a gemstone, the colour of the fluorescence will also be marked.
What Is The Best Diamond Colour?
Whilst D grade diamonds are technically a better quality colour, there is often very minimal difference between D grade diamonds and other diamonds that rank slightly below. Unless you’re an experienced diamond connoisseur, once your chosen diamond has been mounted and is set into its finished piece, the difference in colour will be almost impossible to notice. We suggest that F,G or H colour graded diamonds are a very good choice, providing a very good balance between a gorgeous colour (or lack thereof!) in your gemstone and also a more reasonable price point.
Whatever the colour grade of a diamond, ultimately the final decision lies with you, and your jeweller can help you decide on the best choice of diamond for you and your needs. Book your free design consultation today to kick start your diamond buying experience, we promise it’s not as scary as it sounds!