22 November, 2018

Diamond Buying Made Easy

Diamonds. Created deep within the earth in an array of shapes and sizes. Some are fancy and others are natural but that's not all. They may look similar but they tell their own story. It's important to remember this because it also means that their prices can vary massively.

In this guide, you'll know how to cut through the jargon and capture the information you need to make a buying decision.

What You Need to Know About Buying Diamonds

An industry-wide rule of thumb used to determine the quality of a diamond are the 'Four C's' known as Cut, Clarity, Colour and Carat. These aspects help to break down the quality of a diamond and thus determine a price. Check out the video below for an explanation.  

Credit: Official GIA Channel.

Now that you know about the Four C's, you can start working towards balancing the different aspects to match your budget and/or expectations. Check out these tips!


The cut of a diamond will have an impact on its brilliance. Why? When light passes through the diamond, its different facets will interact with the light in different ways before returning to the observant.

This is where the term 'brilliance' comes from. It describes how much light the diamond can reflect and, depending on the cut, it can vary. Here are some examples:

  • Pear - quite a feminine cut but it elongates short fingers.
  • Round Brilliant - suitable for all hand types which explains its popularity, it's also known for its sparkle.
  • Cushion - a precise and modern cut known for its classic shape.
  • Emerald - a traditional cut with long lines and a deep shine. Emerald diamond rings appear small when they are worn on the hand.

Depending on your preference for cut, it will impact how light passes through the diamond but that doesn't mean it's a terrible diamond if it doesn't shine as much as others! If you have a certain cut in mind then you can now look at the other aspects.

You can read an in-depth guide on Cut here: Diamond Guide - Cut.   


If you've come across the term 'inclusions' and 'blemishes' then it's referring to the clarity of a diamond. 

Inclusions refer to imperfections which are inside the diamond and blemishes refer to imperfections on the outside of the diamond.

Imperfections, in general, can affect the way light passes through the diamond which affects its brilliance and thus, quality. 

Not all imperfections can be seen by the human eye. So, observers will put the diamond under 10x magnification. An example of a tool they use is a jeweller's loupe.

So, when assessing the clarity of a diamond, the fewer inclusions and blemishes the better. There's a scale used to determine the different clarities and they range from being flawless to containing so many inclusions and/or blemishes, they can be seen without magnification.

You can read an in-depth guide on Clarity here: Diamond Guide - Clarity.


Less is more in regard to the colour of a diamond. 

Starting from D and ending at Z, the scale will gradually show the different hues a diamond can be and range from being colourless to a brownish-yellow. 

When deciding on colour, it's recommended to not go below G.

You can read an in-depth guide on Colour here: Diamond Guide - Colour.


Size doesn't matter in regard to the number of carats a diamond has. 

One carat equates to 200mg. However, it's not isolated to round numbers as a diamond can have 0.83cts or 1.34cts. 

Larger diamonds are quite sought after because they are rare. However, that doesn't mean it's better than a smaller diamond.

For example, a 5ct diamond is not 5x better than a 1ct diamond. Why? Cut, clarity and colour will also play its part when determining the value of the stone.

It's recommended to not go below 1ct. 

You can read an in-depth guide on Carat here: Diamond Guide - Carat.

Final Words

Now that you know what to expect when viewing diamonds, you can use this guide to aid your decision-making process. 

It's vital that you determine a budget and then balance the Four C's to reach it. However, if you want to maximise one area at the expense of another then that too can be done. 

It's just paramount that you're satisfied with your final stone.

Here at WG, you can find a selection of jewellery auctions which contain lots already containing these vital aspects. Click on the link and start browsing through our upcoming auctions now!

Buying Diamonds At Auction
Buying Diamonds At Auction
Buying Diamonds At Auction
Buying Diamonds At Auction
Buying Diamonds At Auction
Buying Diamonds At Auction
Buying Diamonds At Auction
Buying Diamonds At Auction