When purchasing a diamond, the idea that “knowledge is power” is your key to a successful purchase. At GCS we will supply you with the knowledge and confidence to purchase diamonds as well as other gemstones. Please take a moment to read the information that we have provided for you in order for you to get a quick understanding of diamonds before you buy. You can contact us via telephone or email with any questions at diamonds@gcsgems.com.

Clarity

When you are ready to learn about the clarity of a diamond, the first thing we would like you to understand is that you and your diamond are both unique. We have a distinct characteristic called a fingerprint… and a diamond’s clarity is its own fingerprint. You should be intimately familiar with your diamond “fingerprint.”

As Flawless and Internally Flawless Diamonds are beautiful and rare, they are extremely expensive as well and may not be what is best for your wallet. Also, they are not as easy to identify as a stone with an inclusion that you are familiar with.

GCS recommends that you purchase a diamond within the VS1 to SI 1-2 for facetted diamonds in rings. When purchasing a step-cut diamond such as an ascher or an emerald cut, we recommend a VS2 or better.

If you are purchasing earrings, you may be able to pick SI2 or even I1 stones that have inclusions that can be hidden by prongs, or are not extremely visible in the table.

  • FL-FLAWLESS: When examined by a trained grader under 10X , they will find no blemishes or inclusions. The following would not disqualify a diamond from this category: 1. Extra facet on the pavilion, not visible when the diamond is face –up. 2. Naturals which are confined to the girdle and do not thicken the girdle or distort its outline. 3. Internal graining, which is not reflective, white or colored and does not significantly effect transparency.
  • IF- INTERNALLY FLAWLESS: Shows no inclusions and only insignificant blemishes when examined under 10X. Blemishes generally are those which can be removed by minor re-polishing.
  • VVS1 and VVS2 – VERY, VERY SLIGHTLY INCLUDED: Contains minute inclusions that are difficult to locate under 10X, even for a skilled grader. In VVS1 they are extremely difficult to see, visible only from the pavilion, or possibly small and / or shallow enough to be polished out.
  • VS1 and VS2 – VERY SLIGHTLY INCLUDED: Contain minor inclusions which may be difficult in (VS1) to fairly easy (in VS2) to see, by a trained grader under 10x. Typical inclusions in VS diamonds are small feathers, small included crystals, and distinct clouds.
  • SI1 and SI2 – SLIGHTLY INCLUDED: Contain inclusions which are noticeable and easy (SI1) or very easy (SI2) to see under 10x. In some SI2 diamonds, inclusions are visible to the unaided eye if the stone is placed table down on a plain white background.
  • I1, I2, I3 – “IMPERFECT”: “I” grade diamonds contain inclusions which are very obvious to the trained grader under 10x and can usually be seen face up without magnification. In I1, beauty or durability are somewhat affected. In I2, beauty or durability are seriously affected. In I3 beauty AND durability are seriously affected.
Cut

When one thinks of the CUT of a diamond, the first thought is generally the shape of the diamond. The shape of a diamond is generally determined when the rough diamond is taken from the mine to the diamond cutter. The cutter determines the best shape that will retain the most weight. The shape should not be confused with the way a diamond is cut!

Cut: the Cut of a diamond refers to how well proportioned a diamond is when it is faceted. The better a diamond is proportioned, the better its brilliance. A diamond which has been cut too shallow or deep will leak light out of the sides or bottom rather than reflecting the light internally and sending the light back through the table of the diamond.

When reading about proportions and angles of diamonds most of the information will be given on round shaped diamonds not fancy cuts (pears, princess, emerald, ascher, emerald, radiant, oval marquise and heart).

Color

The color of a diamond is another one of the 4 Cs. The range of color starts at D and goes thru Z. A diamond can also be a fancy color. A D colored diamond is the highest color for a white diamond and is rare.

D,E,F are considered Colorless diamonds. G, H, I are considered near colorless. Most diamonds sold today are between J – L. At GCS we want you to be happy with your choice of diamond and recommend a diamond I in color or higher.

Diamond Color Description
D - E - F Colorless
G - H - I Will “face up” colorless-even slight traces of color will not be apparent in mounted stones except to the trained eye.
J - K - L Small diamonds will appear colorless “face up” when mounted, but larger ones will be tinted.
M - Z Mounted diamonds display obvious tint, even to the untrained eye.
*Fancy Color: Diamonds can occur in all colors of the spectrum including intense yellows, blues, reds, and greens (of various tones and saturations), along with treated and untreated diamonds.
Carat Weight

The carat weight indicates the size of your diamond. Your diamond’s weight may also be referred to in Points . The larger your diamond the larger the rough piece of diamond is before it is cut.

Carat Weight Points
0.01 1 point
0.25 25 point
0.50 50 point
0.75 75 point
1.00 100 points
1.25 125 points
Shape

At GCS we want to make sure you are educated about a diamond before you purchase one. Please call or email us with any questions.