The 4C’s refer to the cut, clarity, color, and carat weight of a diamond. All these parameters are used to determine the quality of a diamond. The Gemological Institute of America and the American Gem Society are the two major institutions that determine the quality of diamonds.
Let’s take a closer look at each of the 4 parameters that determine the quality of a diamond.
One of the most important aspects that determine the quality of the diamond is its cut. The cut quality of the diamond really means the quality of the angles, proportion, brilliance, fire, scintillation, and symmetrical facets of the diamond. All these factors have a major role to play in the overall aesthetic appeal of the diamond.
The cuts will vary greatly depending on the design and carat weight. Some diamond cutters will cut the diamond too deep or too shallow for optimizing the light reflection. This will also affect the cut quality of the stone. Even a one carat diamond ring can be dull if the cut is not good enough. Therefore, you need to make sure the cut quality of the diamond even if you are buying a one carat ring.
The clarity grade of the diamond is the factor that determines how clean the diamond is. The Gemological Institute of America evaluates the clarity grade of a diamond based on various scales, including FL, IF, VS1, VS2, SI1, SI2, etc.
It is very important to buy a diamond of high clarity because the size, darkness, and location of the blemishes will affect how the light passes through the diamond. The diamond will have a low clarity grade when the blemishes and inclusions of the diamond interfere with the passage of light through the same and affect its brilliance.
The color grading of a diamond is based on how colorless or white the diamond is. The GIA gives grade D for the most colorless and Z grade for a diamond that has noticeable yellow or brown tints. Even though the naked eye cannot differentiate two adjacent color grades, the price difference is a good indication of the difference in the color grades.
Many people mistakenly think that carat weight is the term used to denote the size of the diamond. However, the term carat refers to the weight of the diamond. One carat is equal to 0.2 grams or one-fiflth of a gram. The carat weight of the diamond is a very important parameter that determines its price.