1.) Choose a jeweler as you would choose a doctor.
He or she should be armed with expert training, open to questions and able to provide answers in clear, simple language.
A measure of a jeweler's knowledge is whether he is professionally trained. Preferably, his training comes from a highly-recognized accredited program, such as the Indian Diamond Institute (IDI) diploma programs. An educated jeweler will not only explain the 4Cs of diamond quality to you, but will be able to demonstrate the differences between apparently similar stones. They will also encourage you to compare a number of diamonds that fall in your budget.
2) Understand the 4Cs of Diamond Quality.
This basic knowledge will not only unlock the mystery of a diamond's quality, it will help you understand a diamond's value and price.
DIAMOND COLOR in most diamonds, the term actually refers to the absence of color. The less color in the stone, the more desirable and valuable it is. Some of these differences are not visible to the naked eye, but directly impact the overall quality and price of the stone.
GIA diamond D-Z color grading scale is the industry's most widely accepted grading system. The scale begins with the letter D, representing colorless, and continues, with increasing presence of color, to the letter Z.
DIAMOND CLARITY measures the amount, size and placement of internal 'inclusions,' and external 'blemishes.' Grades run from 'Flawless,' with virtually no imperfections, to 'Included,' which contain a significant number of imperfections.
The GIA Diamond Clarity Scale has 6 categories, some of which are divided, for a total of 11 specific grades.
Inclusions are obvious under 10x magnification which may affect transparency and brilliance. Many inclusions and blemishes are too tiny to be seen by anyone other than a trained diamond grader. To the naked eye, a VS1 and an SI2 diamond may look exactly the same, but these diamonds are quite different in terms of overall quality. This is why expert and accurate assessment of diamond clarity is extremely important.
DIAMOND CUT does not refer to a diamond's shape, but to the proportion and arrangement of its facets and the quality of workmanship. The amount of brilliance, sparkle and fire in a diamond is determined by cut. Grades range from 'Excellent' to 'Poor' considering how successfully a diamond interacts with light to create desirable visual effects such as brightness, fire and scintillation (sparkle) produced by the diamond.
DIAMOND CARAT refers to a diamond's weight. Generally speaking, the higher the carat weight, the more expensive the stone. Two diamonds of equal carat weight, however, can have very different quality and price when the other three Cs are considered.
Diamond carat weight is the measurement of how much a diamond weighs. A metric "carat" is defined as 200 milligrams.
Each carat can be subdivided into 100 'points.' This allows very precise measurements to the hundredth decimal place. A jeweler may describe the weight of a diamond below one carat by its 'points' alone. For instance, the jeweler may refer to a diamond that weighs 0.25 carats as a 'twenty-five pointer.' Diamond weights greater than one carat are expressed in carats and decimals
No matter how beautiful a diamond may look you simply cannot see its true quality. The 4Cs of diamond quality will provide you with the information you need to know the diamond's actual quality.