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The 4Cs of Diamonds

bronze bracelets

A central part of the wedding ceremony is the exchange of wedding rings. The wedding ring can be a plain band of gold, platinum or titanium. However, it can be even grander if a diamond graces the center. Here are a few tips to help you choose a diamond worthy of splurging on.

Diamond Basics

A diamond can take many shapes. The most popular shape is round but other shapes include emerald, pear, oval and heart. The shape is not very important in determining the value of a piece of diamond jewelry. It is only significant in so far as it affects the diamond’s cut.

A diamond’s actual value is determined by a combination of four characteristics which are cut, carat, clarity and color. The higher the grade is of the diamond in each of these criteria, the greater is its value.

The cut

The cut determines a diamond’s brilliance and sparkle and this is the most important criterion for grading a diamond. However inherently ideal a piece of diamond is, a bad cut could ruin it and greatly diminish its value.

The diamond must be cut in such a way as to emphasize the play of light. The ideal cut would be one that lets in light and reflects that light in full measure. The factors that affect this would be the diamond’s width, depth, polish and symmetry.

The clarity

A diamond has an intrinsic trait that a diamond cutter may only enhance or diminish but never create. This is the diamond clarity. The most sought after diamonds are those that are perfectly flawless – those that do not have scratches, trace minerals and other mineral impurities – even under great magnification.

The color

Diamonds emit a color when light passes through its facets. The more colorless the diamond’s light emission, the better its color grade. Diamonds with less fluorescence are therefore more valuable.

The carat

Carat is the measure of a diamond’s weight. A 2-carat diamond is more expensive than two 1-carat diamonds together because a big-sized diamond is less easily found than a small-sized one.

Now that you know the different qualities that make a good diamond, it’s time to choose your own. Set your budget before you begin shopping. Then choose a diamond ring that can bring you the best value within your given budget. Remember that even if the wedding ring is central to the ceremony, it’s the vows that matter more.