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Bling 101: The Diamond 4cs

We all know diamonds are a girl’s best friend, but do you know your 4Cs education? The only globally accepted standard for describing and accessing the quality of diamonds: Color, Clarity, Cut and Carat.

Bling 101: The Diamond 4cs

{Photo by Amy Hill Photography}

The holidays are right around the corner and with them the hopefully possibility that the man of your dream will get down on his knees with a heartfelt proposal and something sparkly. It’s important he, too, knows the 4Cs.

Here’s a little help from the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), the creator of the Diamond 4Cs and world’s trusted source for unbiased assessment…


The diamond color evaluation of most gem-quality diamonds is based on the absence of color. A chemically pure and structurally perfect diamond has no hue, like a drop of pure water, and consequently, a higher value. See the GIA’s D-to-Z grading scale.


Natural diamonds are the result of carbon exposed to tremendous heat and pressure deep in the earth. Evaluating diamond clarity involves determining the number, size, relief, nature, and position of blemishes and internal characteristics, as well as how these affect the overall appearance of the stone. While no diamond is perfectly pure, the closer it comes, the higher its value. See the GIA clarity scale.

Bling 101: The Diamond 4cs


Diamonds are renowned for their ability to transmit light and sparkle so intensely. We often think of a diamond’s cut as shape (round, emerald, pear), but a diamond’s cut grade is really about how well its facets interact with light. Precise artistry and workmanship are required to fashion a stone so its proportions, symmetry, and polish deliver the magnificent return of light only possible in a diamond.


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. Diamond weights greater than one carat are expressed in carats and decimals. A 1.08 carat stone would be described as ‘one point oh eight carats.

When discussing cost, the GIA reminds it’s important to remember that a diamond’s value is determined using all of the 4Cs, not just carat weight.

> For more information on diamonds and the 4Cs, visit GIA’s Diamond Center.

{ Show us your bling! Upload a photo of your stunning sparklers to Instagram and tag @BreakersWedding }


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