Yellow Gold Diamond Band online Candler

For centuries in Candler , diamond has been used as an epitome of true love. It reflects love, affection, security, trust and a life long commitment. When you gift a diamond to a woman, let it be in the form of diamond engagement ring, you need not say the rest. It will make others understand that how much serious you are for her. It will portray your love in the best possible manner.

You can find a variety of diamond engagement rings at online jewelry stores in Candler . These diamond engagement rings come in many shapes and styles. It is apt to choose diamond as the stone for these engagement rings because diamond is considered beautiful and it is also the hardest of all substances present on the earth. This is primarily the reason why people consider it ominous and feel that wearing diamond can bring same kind of good luck in their lives. This has made diamond engagement ring, diamond solitaire ring, designer engagement ring, diamond engagement ring platinum, discount diamond engagement ring a pre determined gift for those involved in love.

Out of all rings, a ring with solitaire is considered the most appropriate symbol which can depict your love. The attraction with the solitaire is incomparable. Diamond solitaire rings are set in a prong setting with 4 to 8 claws. Prongs can mostly be seen in platinum, yet another very beautiful and attractive metal. In most of the cases platinum is considered, as it is generally thin, and makes the diamond more visible.

Then there is yet another form of diamond engagement rings, which is attractive as well as romantic. It is known as past, present future ring. These rings define love as eternal and something which was in the past will be in the present and will be there in the future. The ring actually consists of three stones of diamond. The design of the ring can be like a center piece of diamond with two pieces around, or the three pieces of diamond clustered together. Side stone diamond engagement rings are also one style of engagement rings, which is elegant. This type of engagement ring is basically attractive as well as elegant.

They go well for working women.

Then there are antique diamond rings in Candler . These are also called Victorian rings. The designs of these rings are just like what was prevalent in the past. These diamond rings also look well if they go with some other stones. And if you want to give something priceless and sentimental to your lover, then you can gift her ancestral ring. Ancestral ring is the ring of your family, coming down since past. This ring must have been worn by your mother and grandmother. These rings are high in sentimental value and thus are considered priceless. Bit if you do not have such a family ring, then there is nothing to be upset over. You can buy for your fiancé or your wife unique engagement rings; who knows, one day; this ring can becomes an ancestral ring for your family.

So, what are you waiting for? If you are planning to walk the aisle with hand in hand with your lover, then begin the process by gifting her a diamond engagement ring. After all, diamonds are a woman’s best friend.

princess cut diamond

Candler How to Buy a Diamond And The 4 Biggest Mistakes When Buying a Diamond

In an ideal world with unlimited budgets and an infinite supply of diamonds, everyone would have beautifully cut "D Flawless" diamonds. In the real world every diamond is unique. There are plenty of gorgeous diamonds to go around - you just need to know how to find one. Choosing a diamond is about balancing several factors to make the most of your budget. Each factor contributes to the beauty and prestige of your diamond. I will explain these factors so you will be prepared to make an informed decision about your diamond purchase.

FACTOR 1: CARAT WEIGHT

People often use the word Carat when discussing how big a diamond is, however "Carat" actually refers to the weight of a diamond. There is no rule as to what carat weight you should buy, but you'll doubtless have heard that "bigger is better." If you ask me, I think bigger is great but you shouldn't forget about the other aspects of a diamond's quality.

A useful tip: if you're looking at Certified Diamonds, you may find it valuable to compare the diameters of different diamonds. Since every diamond is individually cut, some may appear larger than others of the same weight.

FACTOR 2: SHAPE

Approximately 75% of diamonds sold worldwide are Round Brilliants. Rounds diamonds are the most popular, most brilliant, and most expensive. If you are purchasing a diamond as a surprise, Round Brilliant is generally your safest bet.

There is no real hierarchy of shapes being better or worse - it is truly a matter of personal preference. Princess Cuts are the second most popular, and a classic alternative to round diamonds. Cushion Cuts are trendy and have a beautiful vintage look. If you want something different but not too crazy, try an Oval Cut, Asscher Cut, or Radiant Cut diamond.

While no shape is better, there are some significant differences between shapes. Take for example, the radiant cut vs the emerald cut. Though they are a similar shape, the extra facets of the radiant cut give it additional fire and sparkle. If you prefer the emerald cut's understated elegance, consider that it's easier to spot any imperfections and select a higher clarity grade.

Another tip: Diamonds (even round diamonds) may not be perfectly symmetrical. It's nothing to worry about if your diamond's width does not precisely match its height, but if your diamond is much longer than it is wide it may not be what you're expecting. This is especially the case in shapes like Cushion and Oval, where a more asymmetrical diamond might look "skinny", with much of the fire and brilliance concentrated at the ends.

FACTOR 3: CUT

"Cut" refers to a diamond's finish and proportions, and is critical in determining its beauty. Getting the angles right ensures a beautiful diamond that's full of life. In many cases it can be more difficult to spot flaws in a fiery, brilliant diamond. Cut is generally graded in five categories: Poor, Fair, Good, Very Good, and Excellent. Excellent is the highest graded awarded by GIA (whereas other labs may use terms like "ideal" or numbers like "0"). If you want to play safe, stick to "Very Good" and "Excellent" cuts when you choose your diamond.

FACTOR 4: CLARITY

Almost all diamonds have naturally¬ occurring features called "inclusions." Inclusions form as the diamond crystallizes deep underground, and they are unique to each diamond. They take many different forms, and can help you identify a diamond as your own. However, large and prominent inclusions can detract from the beauty of a diamond.

There are many different types of inclusions, and not all are created equal. If your diamond certificate has an "inclusion map," check where the inclusions are. Try to find a diamond with inclusions near the edge where they will be masked by sparkle or hidden by the setting of your diamond. If your budget is limited, I recommend buying "SI" clarity or better. "SI" stands for "Slightly Included." With close inspection you can usually spot the inclusions in an SI¬ graded diamond, but these inclusions will most likely not be visible once your diamond is set in jewellery. If you want to be sure your diamond will look "eye clean", even up close, I recommend selecting a VS2 clarity diamond or better. "VS" stands for "Very Slight Inclusion," and imperfections in VS clarity stones are rarely seen by the naked eye.

FACTOR 5: COLOUR

The term "colour" usually refers to how much warm tint is in a diamond. The scale ranges from D (colorless) to Z (very strongly tinted yellow or brown). Pure white diamonds are considered more desirable, and are more expensive. Warmer¬-hued diamonds (such as K, L, and M) are not necessarily less attractive, but they are significantly less valuable.

Conventional wisdom is to select J colour or better. Personally, I love G and H colour diamonds ¬- they hit the "sweet spot" where most people will not notice colour in the diamond unless they're doing a direct comparison. However, an I or J colour diamond that is well cut and has a lot of life can give you a beautiful diamond at a bargain price.

Depending on how they are cut, different diamonds will display colour differently. This is why colour grades are assigned by looking at a diamond upside¬down. Generally, more¬ brilliant diamonds show their colour less than less brilliant diamonds.

FACTOR 6: FLUORESCENCE

Fluorescence has a bad rep, and most of it is unfair. Diamond Fluorescence refers to how a diamond responds when subjected to ultra¬violet light. Fluorescent diamonds can glow any one of several colours, but the most common is blue. In rare cases fluorescence can cause your diamond to have a milky appearance when viewed in direct daylight. This is most often the case with strong or very strong fluorescence and D/E/F colour diamonds.

However, there are many, many more cases where blue fluorescence is a positive thing. Imagine you were shining a blue light on a yellow diamond... the blue tint can make your diamond look whiter. If your diamond falls in the "near colourless," "lightly tinted," or "tinted" range I recommend looking for medium blue or faint blue fluorescence.

Warning: Green, red, and yellow fluorescence are rare, and they will not have the same benefit. If you are interested in a diamond that has strong blue, very strong blue, green, red, or yellow fluorescence, I recommend asking your salesperson to show you your diamond outside in natural daylight. If you're buying online, contact the seller prior to making your purchase so they can examine the diamond first in natural daylight.

FACTOR 7: GRADER

This should always be your first question: Says who? Every diamond grading laboratory has different standards, so comparing diamonds graded by different sources is extremely unreliable. One grader might grade a diamond K SI2, and another might call that same diamond F VS2. I know that sounds crazy, but I see it happen all the time.

The most reputable and consistent grading laboratories are GIA, AGS, IGI, and HRD. GIA is considered the global standard worldwide. AGS is a popular alternative in the U.S.A. while IGI and HRD are more common in Europe.

EGL is tricky because there are EGL labs all over the world, and some of them do a great job while others can be less reliable. We strongly recommend caution when buying an EGL certified diamond unless it's from EGL-¬USA.

Many diamonds are assigned grades by valuation companies and in-¬house graders. If your diamond does not come with a report from a major laboratory, you should always ask where the grader trained. He or she should be certified by a major grading laboratory: GIA, AGS, IGI, or HRD. Be smart and be cautious about reports done by uncertified shop owners, salespeople, or valuation companies.

SELECTING YOUR DIAMOND

You can choose to purchase your diamond online, or from a retail store. If you prefer to purchase your diamond in a retail store, avoid the big chains and shop with smaller independent jewellers. Many independent jewellers are actually significantly less expensive than their large competitors. (You don't have to take my word for it - shop around and you'll quickly learn that this is true). This way you'll buy a better quality diamond and - if you wish - you'll have the opportunity to design your own hand-made engagement ring setting.

If you choose to shop online, I would recommend comparing prices and service across several websites. Be sure that the company ships from your country - otherwise you'll be hit with expensive duty and GST. Always make sure you call or e-mail customer service and have them hand-inspect your diamond before you complete your purchase. Sometimes a diamond may seem like a great deal, but it could have an unfortunate inclusion, asymmetrical cut, or be negatively impacted by fluoresence. And above all, make sure you have an easy and affordable way to return the diamond if it doesn't turn out as you'd hoped. Online shopping is the best way to get a great deal on a diamond for your engagement ring, diamond studs, or pendant - just review this article, be reasonably cautious, and have fun.

round diamond earrings white gold

Beginning With the Essential When Intrigued in Getting Diamond Precious Jewelry.

Candler

Getting a diamond involvement ring is quite a worthy purchase every male need to be privileged enough making. Some that do not actually recognize way too much regarding jewelry and rubies could really feel as if they must simply go to a shop as well as select out a ring which looks eye-catching to them. Although this could suffice, there are much better methods to selecting the ideal feasible kind of diamond involvement ring for your enjoyed one. The complying with will certainly list the leading 10 tricks to buying a ruby interaction ring.

Shop Around

Maybe among the best secrets to bear in mind if you bear in mind absolutely nothing else from this list is to search. Acquiring a ring of this type on an impulse will probably not lead you to the most effective bargain or the very best ruby. Consequently, take your time when purchasing an interaction ring, look around and also see what is available to be bought.

You Can Discover a Gorgeous Ruby Interaction Ring on Sale

You must likewise be aware of that you have the ability to locate an elegant ruby engagement ring with a desirable price tag affixed to it. This is not to claim that you need to restrict your choices just to sale products however always do not hesitate to read the sale counter when looking for an interaction ring to provide to your future fiancée. Do see to it that it is a legit sale as well as not one that runs all the time.

Size of the Ruby Really Doesn't Matter

One more key when it involves getting an interaction ruby ring is that the carat weight size of the ruby is not truly what issues when all is claimed as well as done. Although some could think that a bigger ruby amounts to a far better ruby this is usually not the instance as cut, shade and quality all have to be taken into account in enhancement to the carat weight of the stone.

Purchasing Online Is an Option

With today's innovation, you could buy practically anything on the internet and the exact same holds true for diamond engagement rings. For those that like the idea of an online acquisition, there are plenty of web sites which offer ruby rings for sale and could use rather a good bargain also. Just be certain to obtain documentation mentioning real quality of the ring. The on-line organisation ought to have an One Month loan back guaranty without concerns asked.

Buying the Ring with Wedding Bands Can Save Loan

You might likewise discover that if you remain in the marketplace for not only an engagement ring yet wedding bands as well, buying all these things with each other could conserve you money. Particular ring designers will certainly create interaction rings with matching wedding celebration bands which you can acquire as a set.

White Gold Looks Like Platinum But Is Cheaper

If your loved one suches as silver-tone jewelry but you are unable to manage a platinum ruby involvement ring, take into consideration getting one made of white gold. White gold is an excellent choice as it looks like platinum yet is much less costly.

Precious Jewelry Sellers Commonly Have A Couple Of Sales Throughout The Year

An additional key to acquiring a diamond engagement ring is that numerous jewelry merchants offer sales during the year. Some are vacation sales whereas others are a method for the precious jewelry store to obtain eliminate the old inventory to make space for brand-new items entering into the store.

Purchasing the Diamond and also Setting Separately Could Conserve Money

You might additionally locate that buying the ruby and also setting separate from one an additional could save you some loan. It additionally enables you to choose exactly the kind of ring that you desire and have the ability to see it before the rock is established.

Getting a Small Carat Size with Baguettes Is Occasionally a Better Deal

If you are searching for a diamond involvement ring with a lot of shimmer but you are unable to afford a huge carat diamond, take into consideration purchasing a smaller ruby however add baguettes to the ring. This will include glimmer and shine and not cost as long as a bigger ruby could cost.

Think About Little Precious Jewelry Shops Which Deal Personalized Service

For those who are looking for a jewelry shop which will certainly give tailored solution, you may wish to get the ruby engagement ring for your loved one at a small precious jewelry store. These jewelry boutiques are frequently run by the specific owner that will do whatever possible to earn your engagement ring purchasing trip stunning.

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3 Emerald Cut Diamond Ring online Florida

Male Wedding Bands online Candler

For centuries in Candler , diamond has been used as an epitome of true love. It reflects love, affection, security, trust and a life long commitment. When you gift a diamond to a woman, let it be in the form of diamond engagement ring, you need not say the rest. It will make others understand that how much serious you are for her. It will portray your love in the best possible manner.

You can find a variety of diamond engagement rings at online jewelry stores in Candler . These diamond engagement rings come in many shapes and styles. It is apt to choose diamond as the stone for these engagement rings because diamond is considered beautiful and it is also the hardest of all substances present on the earth. This is primarily the reason why people consider it ominous and feel that wearing diamond can bring same kind of good luck in their lives. This has made diamond engagement ring, diamond solitaire ring, designer engagement ring, diamond engagement ring platinum, discount diamond engagement ring a pre determined gift for those involved in love.

Out of all rings, a ring with solitaire is considered the most appropriate symbol which can depict your love. The attraction with the solitaire is incomparable. Diamond solitaire rings are set in a prong setting with 4 to 8 claws. Prongs can mostly be seen in platinum, yet another very beautiful and attractive metal. In most of the cases platinum is considered, as it is generally thin, and makes the diamond more visible.

Then there is yet another form of diamond engagement rings, which is attractive as well as romantic. It is known as past, present future ring. These rings define love as eternal and something which was in the past will be in the present and will be there in the future. The ring actually consists of three stones of diamond. The design of the ring can be like a center piece of diamond with two pieces around, or the three pieces of diamond clustered together. Side stone diamond engagement rings are also one style of engagement rings, which is elegant. This type of engagement ring is basically attractive as well as elegant.

They go well for working women.

Then there are antique diamond rings in Candler . These are also called Victorian rings. The designs of these rings are just like what was prevalent in the past. These diamond rings also look well if they go with some other stones. And if you want to give something priceless and sentimental to your lover, then you can gift her ancestral ring. Ancestral ring is the ring of your family, coming down since past. This ring must have been worn by your mother and grandmother. These rings are high in sentimental value and thus are considered priceless. Bit if you do not have such a family ring, then there is nothing to be upset over. You can buy for your fiancé or your wife unique engagement rings; who knows, one day; this ring can becomes an ancestral ring for your family.

So, what are you waiting for? If you are planning to walk the aisle with hand in hand with your lover, then begin the process by gifting her a diamond engagement ring. After all, diamonds are a woman’s best friend.

princess cut wedding rings

Candler How to Buy a Diamond And The 4 Biggest Mistakes When Buying a Diamond

Not all vendors supply diamond grading lab reports (aka ruby top quality reports) to their customers. So my basic advice to you is to maintain your money in your pocket when managing such jewelers.

Just buy a ruby involvement ring if it comes with the original diamond high quality report.

A lab report is an independent assessment of the 4Cs of a loosened ruby as well as includes an outlined representation of the rock's clearness attributes and a visuals representation of the rock's proportions. Having such a report allows you to contrast diamonds of various top qualities and also eventually aids you make a more informed purchasing decision.

A retailer could reduce corners and not give a laboratory record or a dishonest seller might offer a fake one due to the fact that of the moment, difficulty and also expense he'll bear to getting a rock graded.

Yeah - there is a rate for grading a diamond (though that expense is eventually paid by the consumer), plus the delivery and insurance costs for sending out the diamond to the lab. And also let us not fail to remember the opportunity expense of a jeweler not having the diamond in his shop available for a couple of weeks while the grading occurs.

Nonetheless, a ruby grading report could also not be offered since the prices to obtaining one could influence as well greatly on the last rate of the ring. For instance, a 0.3 ct ruby ring setting you back $250 state, might cost around $75 to be graded and have the report number etched on the girdle on the diamond. As you browse for that ideal diamond interaction ring for your sweetie, you'll locate that there is a hodgepodge of laboratories declaring to supply reputable ruby grading records. Yet I would only place my loan on ...

The Premier Diamond Grading Lab Reports

Yes, all diamond top quality reports are not created equal. Within the industry, it is a consensus that the two leading labs are GIA-GTL (Gemological Institute of America's Treasure Trade Lab) and the AGS (American Gem Culture Laboratories).

The GCAL (Treasure Certification and also Guarantee Lab) additionally provides extremely concerned reports or "diamond certifications" as they are referred to by GCAL. The GIA has the toughest international online reputation for independence as well as consistency. As a result of their continuous shade and quality strictness standards, the globe's largest and most pricey rubies have been sent there for rating years. In 2006, GIA-GTL included a two-dimensional cut grading system for rounded brilliant diamonds.

AGS makes use of the strictest cut criteria in the market. It utilizes a three-dimensional light efficiency metric that can grade several diamond shapes. As a matter of fact, it is the only cut grading system that is recognized by the scientific community.

Just what is even more, its Ruby Quality Paper utilizes a distinct as well as exclusive 0 to 10 grading system to assess the 4 Cs - a system which is less complicated to understand compared to GIA's grading system. Actually, AGS even goes the additional action by relating their 0-10 score range to other forms of rating. As an example, the traditional VS1 ruby clearness rating is a 3 on the AGS Diamond Top Quality Paper.

Diamond Coverage - The Drawbacks

1. Ruby grading is not standardized or regulated and also for this reason you may stumble upon rate 2 labs that use looser standards to the rate 1 grading labs stated over. If you purchase a ruby that has been rated by a tier 2 lab, you could wind up paying more for a minimal quality diamond. So for instance, a ruby ranked a "F" in shade at a tier 2 lab could obtain a G, H, or reduced shade ranking at an extra reliable lab. The industry likewise marks down rubies graded by lesser recognized labs by about 15-30% or even more. So either you just get a diamond graded by a rate 1 laboratory or you approve that you may be getting a minimal top quality ruby compared to exactly what is specified on the report if that ruby is graded by a lesser known lab.

2. Numerous large store have massive agreements with minimal recognized laboratories with "softer" diamond grading guidelines. Several of these softer labs placed "suggested replacement values" on the lab reports - values which are above just what stores intends sell the diamonds for. So a sales representative in a store might state to you, "Look at the large amount you are obtaining here. We are marketing you this diamond engagement ring for $2500 but the report states that the suggested replacement worth is $4000." Wow - what a bargain - NOT! This is why it is much better that you trust only independent tier 1 labs.

Likewise remember that credible ruby grading records are not evaluations and do not provide appraisal numbers. Diamond evaluations are often blatantly inflated and are not something you'll intend to depend on.

3. Ruby reports are filled with disclaimers that define that nothing is "accredited" or assured and also that the laboratories are not responsible for errors. Actually, the GIA provides a disclaimer of sorts on their internet site concerning making use of the word "certify." The internet site claims:

"It is wrong to state that students, graduates, their companies, or specific gems are "accredited" by GIA. The Gemological Institute of The U.S.A. does not accredit anyone or anything. Neither a pupil neither a grad who has actually been granted a certificate or diploma, nor a treasure which has been rated or recognized by GIA has been certified by GIA".

So it is feasible that you the customer is left holding the bag should an inaccuracy in a report is later on discovered. Courts have actually frequently ruled that sellers, not labs, are in charge of such mistakes. Why? Because the laboratories indicated in advance that their reports could not be held liable.

Luckily, there are a pair ways to offer on your own more customer defense:

A. You can fly to India where jewelry experts provide a life time buyback policy to their clients. As well expensive to fly?

B. You might find among the 20% people jewelry experts who market totally bonded rubies. These are rubies that are marketed with life time damage, life time trade-in and also life time buyback policies.

C. Not as excellent a solution as acquiring a fully bonded ruby yet you could get a diamond that features an actual "certification" and not a report. "Certified rubies do have warranties" albeit for much shorter durations.

Accreditation Some vendors refer to a "diamond record" as a "licensed diamond" but practically this is not remedy. From a legal perspective, a diamond record is a just an expert point of view though in reality, facets of a ruby grading record are not just viewpoints.

For instance, a diamond's carat (weight) can be precisely established as well as its cut grade by gauging its optical efficiency or by describing a computer system version. A certification on the various other hand is a declaration of reality - a document for which the company approves lawful obligation and also will certainly make restitution to the consumer for mistakes.

Some leading ruby grading laboratories use both records and certifications. AGS offers Ruby Quality Files (non-certified records) as well as likewise Diamond Quality Certificates. Diamond Top quality Certificates are ready solely for AGS retail jewelry experts and supplies warranties from getting involved American Treasure Society member shops.

GCAL licenses it's ruby grading additionally. Its 100% money-back guarantee plan stands for a duration of two years from the date on the applicable certificate. This plan ensures the precision of the cut, color and quality qualities as well as the carat weight.

A report or certificate should will have a number on it that might or could not be engraved on a diamond. You will certainly be able to go into that number on the website of the accrediting laboratory to examine a report's credibility.

Components Of A Ruby Grading Record Ruby grading records are constantly advancing yet certain element ought to stay the very same. For example, the:

The Record #. This number is offered as well as tape-recorded in a lab's document as well as may or may not be inscribed on a ruby's girdle. You can go into the record number on a rating lab's site to examine the authenticity of the diamond quality report or to obtain even more info concerning the diamond. Forming & Aspect Style: This is the overview and also the reducing design used for the facet plan. There are 3 fundamental aspect styles - "dazzling cut, action cut as well as mixed reducing design" and 12 fundamental forms that include notables such as round brilliant and also princess cut" diamonds.

Dimensions: This describes dimension (not weight) of a diamond. Dimension includes measurements such as length, size, weight as well as diameter. A dimension is commonly provided to the hundredth of a millimeter. Dimensions play a significant duty in how a diamond shines.

Carat Weight: The weight of a diamond is determined to the hundredth of a carat weight and some even offer such action to the thousandth of a carat weight (1.123 ct.). Carat weight is the most objective and also the simplest to recognize of the 4Cs because all one has to do is weight the rock. Shade Quality: This informs you the degree of color absence in the diamond. The much less color the greater the grade.

Rubies are normally rated from D-Z; the closer to "D" the whiter the diamond. You should never ever see ruby color array such as (G-H, I-J-K, and also so on) on a ruby report. You must only see color arrays on appraisals for stones that are placed.

Clarity Quality: Basically every diamond has actually interior imperfections called inclusions and also outside blemishes called blemishes. A diamond is graded according to the size, type, place and quantity of these problems.

Clearness qualities vary from Remarkable (FL) - Included. Labs make use of a pair professionals to quality the quality of a ruby in order to develop an extra exact reading.

Cut Quality: Much more current ruby records include a cut quality for common round brilliant diamonds. Cut takes right into factor to consider the brilliance, fire as well as scintillation of the diamond. Cut quality ranges from Superb - Poor.

Other aspects you could encounter on a diamond report include the gloss, symmetry, fluorescence as well as proportion. Armed with this info, you are much better able making an evaluation of the high quality of ruby that is placed in an engagement ring.

marriage rings

Getting Diamonds Online - Is This Online Jewelry Expert Right For You?

Candler

In an ideal world with unlimited budgets and an infinite supply of diamonds, everyone would have beautifully cut "D Flawless" diamonds. In the real world every diamond is unique. There are plenty of gorgeous diamonds to go around - you just need to know how to find one. Choosing a diamond is about balancing several factors to make the most of your budget. Each factor contributes to the beauty and prestige of your diamond. I will explain these factors so you will be prepared to make an informed decision about your diamond purchase.

FACTOR 1: CARAT WEIGHT

People often use the word Carat when discussing how big a diamond is, however "Carat" actually refers to the weight of a diamond. There is no rule as to what carat weight you should buy, but you'll doubtless have heard that "bigger is better." If you ask me, I think bigger is great but you shouldn't forget about the other aspects of a diamond's quality.

A useful tip: if you're looking at Certified Diamonds, you may find it valuable to compare the diameters of different diamonds. Since every diamond is individually cut, some may appear larger than others of the same weight.

FACTOR 2: SHAPE

Approximately 75% of diamonds sold worldwide are Round Brilliants. Rounds diamonds are the most popular, most brilliant, and most expensive. If you are purchasing a diamond as a surprise, Round Brilliant is generally your safest bet.

There is no real hierarchy of shapes being better or worse - it is truly a matter of personal preference. Princess Cuts are the second most popular, and a classic alternative to round diamonds. Cushion Cuts are trendy and have a beautiful vintage look. If you want something different but not too crazy, try an Oval Cut, Asscher Cut, or Radiant Cut diamond.

While no shape is better, there are some significant differences between shapes. Take for example, the radiant cut vs the emerald cut. Though they are a similar shape, the extra facets of the radiant cut give it additional fire and sparkle. If you prefer the emerald cut's understated elegance, consider that it's easier to spot any imperfections and select a higher clarity grade.

Another tip: Diamonds (even round diamonds) may not be perfectly symmetrical. It's nothing to worry about if your diamond's width does not precisely match its height, but if your diamond is much longer than it is wide it may not be what you're expecting. This is especially the case in shapes like Cushion and Oval, where a more asymmetrical diamond might look "skinny", with much of the fire and brilliance concentrated at the ends.

FACTOR 3: CUT

"Cut" refers to a diamond's finish and proportions, and is critical in determining its beauty. Getting the angles right ensures a beautiful diamond that's full of life. In many cases it can be more difficult to spot flaws in a fiery, brilliant diamond. Cut is generally graded in five categories: Poor, Fair, Good, Very Good, and Excellent. Excellent is the highest graded awarded by GIA (whereas other labs may use terms like "ideal" or numbers like "0"). If you want to play safe, stick to "Very Good" and "Excellent" cuts when you choose your diamond.

FACTOR 4: CLARITY

Almost all diamonds have naturally¬ occurring features called "inclusions." Inclusions form as the diamond crystallizes deep underground, and they are unique to each diamond. They take many different forms, and can help you identify a diamond as your own. However, large and prominent inclusions can detract from the beauty of a diamond.

There are many different types of inclusions, and not all are created equal. If your diamond certificate has an "inclusion map," check where the inclusions are. Try to find a diamond with inclusions near the edge where they will be masked by sparkle or hidden by the setting of your diamond. If your budget is limited, I recommend buying "SI" clarity or better. "SI" stands for "Slightly Included." With close inspection you can usually spot the inclusions in an SI¬ graded diamond, but these inclusions will most likely not be visible once your diamond is set in jewellery. If you want to be sure your diamond will look "eye clean", even up close, I recommend selecting a VS2 clarity diamond or better. "VS" stands for "Very Slight Inclusion," and imperfections in VS clarity stones are rarely seen by the naked eye.

FACTOR 5: COLOUR

The term "colour" usually refers to how much warm tint is in a diamond. The scale ranges from D (colorless) to Z (very strongly tinted yellow or brown). Pure white diamonds are considered more desirable, and are more expensive. Warmer¬-hued diamonds (such as K, L, and M) are not necessarily less attractive, but they are significantly less valuable.

Conventional wisdom is to select J colour or better. Personally, I love G and H colour diamonds ¬- they hit the "sweet spot" where most people will not notice colour in the diamond unless they're doing a direct comparison. However, an I or J colour diamond that is well cut and has a lot of life can give you a beautiful diamond at a bargain price.

Depending on how they are cut, different diamonds will display colour differently. This is why colour grades are assigned by looking at a diamond upside¬down. Generally, more¬ brilliant diamonds show their colour less than less brilliant diamonds.

FACTOR 6: FLUORESCENCE

Fluorescence has a bad rep, and most of it is unfair. Diamond Fluorescence refers to how a diamond responds when subjected to ultra¬violet light. Fluorescent diamonds can glow any one of several colours, but the most common is blue. In rare cases fluorescence can cause your diamond to have a milky appearance when viewed in direct daylight. This is most often the case with strong or very strong fluorescence and D/E/F colour diamonds.

However, there are many, many more cases where blue fluorescence is a positive thing. Imagine you were shining a blue light on a yellow diamond... the blue tint can make your diamond look whiter. If your diamond falls in the "near colourless," "lightly tinted," or "tinted" range I recommend looking for medium blue or faint blue fluorescence.

Warning: Green, red, and yellow fluorescence are rare, and they will not have the same benefit. If you are interested in a diamond that has strong blue, very strong blue, green, red, or yellow fluorescence, I recommend asking your salesperson to show you your diamond outside in natural daylight. If you're buying online, contact the seller prior to making your purchase so they can examine the diamond first in natural daylight.

FACTOR 7: GRADER

This should always be your first question: Says who? Every diamond grading laboratory has different standards, so comparing diamonds graded by different sources is extremely unreliable. One grader might grade a diamond K SI2, and another might call that same diamond F VS2. I know that sounds crazy, but I see it happen all the time.

The most reputable and consistent grading laboratories are GIA, AGS, IGI, and HRD. GIA is considered the global standard worldwide. AGS is a popular alternative in the U.S.A. while IGI and HRD are more common in Europe.

EGL is tricky because there are EGL labs all over the world, and some of them do a great job while others can be less reliable. We strongly recommend caution when buying an EGL certified diamond unless it's from EGL-¬USA.

Many diamonds are assigned grades by valuation companies and in-¬house graders. If your diamond does not come with a report from a major laboratory, you should always ask where the grader trained. He or she should be certified by a major grading laboratory: GIA, AGS, IGI, or HRD. Be smart and be cautious about reports done by uncertified shop owners, salespeople, or valuation companies.

SELECTING YOUR DIAMOND

You can choose to purchase your diamond online, or from a retail store. If you prefer to purchase your diamond in a retail store, avoid the big chains and shop with smaller independent jewellers. Many independent jewellers are actually significantly less expensive than their large competitors. (You don't have to take my word for it - shop around and you'll quickly learn that this is true). This way you'll buy a better quality diamond and - if you wish - you'll have the opportunity to design your own hand-made engagement ring setting.

If you choose to shop online, I would recommend comparing prices and service across several websites. Be sure that the company ships from your country - otherwise you'll be hit with expensive duty and GST. Always make sure you call or e-mail customer service and have them hand-inspect your diamond before you complete your purchase. Sometimes a diamond may seem like a great deal, but it could have an unfortunate inclusion, asymmetrical cut, or be negatively impacted by fluoresence. And above all, make sure you have an easy and affordable way to return the diamond if it doesn't turn out as you'd hoped. Online shopping is the best way to get a great deal on a diamond for your engagement ring, diamond studs, or pendant - just review this article, be reasonably cautious, and have fun.

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