The four C's: Diamond quality factors
There are four factors that jewelers use to determine the value of a diamond, whether it is earth-mined or lab created.
The jewelry industry calls these "The Four C's," which are Carat Weight, Color, Clarity, and Cut.
The more a diamond weighs, the larger it will be. Because large diamonds are rare, they generally have a greater value per carat – though the other quality factors of cut, color, and clarity can also affect price. The term "carat" is derived from the carob seeds that were used to balance scales in ancient times. There are 100 points in a carat, thus a half-carat diamond can be referred to as a 50-point stone, for example.
Diamond comes in every color of the spectrum, though the most common ones used for jewelry are colorless. And among colorless diamonds, there is a range of "whiteness." Diamonds that are truly colorless are very rare and costly. Reputable diamond grading laboratories grade diamonds based on how far from colorless they are, in a range that starts with D, the purest white, and goes downward from there.
A diamond, whether lab created or mined, can contain internal spots or lines, which jewelers call inclusions. These occur sometimes as a diamond crystal is growing. The fewer of these inclusions there are, the better a diamond's clarity will be, and the more valuable it is. Diamond clarity is graded on a scale from Flawless (Fl) to Imperfect (I).
This factor doesn't mean whether a diamonds is round or square. It refers to a diamond's proportions, including the size of its table top, the depth and angle of its sides, plus its polish and symmetry.A well-cut diamond has a luster and brilliance that shows off the best qualities of the gem. For our jewelry, we select lab created diamonds that are cut to bring out the best qualities of each individual crystal.