Buying diamonds can be a daunting prospect, especially if it is your first diamond purchase, and you are strongly advised to do some online research prior to looking at diamonds. Knowing the 4 Cs is essential; Cut, Clarity, Colour and Carat and the other benchmark is of course, the diamond certificate. There are several institutes that issue diamond grading reports, with the Gemological Institute of America being the best known, and if you are unsure how to read such a report, here is an overview of the contents of a GIA diamond report.
The header will tell you who issued the diamond report. In this case, it would be the GIA. But, it could also be issued by AGS or EGL, both of which are recognised globally. These three institutes are the only ones you should take seriously, as lesser known organisations might grade the diamond in the jeweller’s favour, whereas with GIA, you know the grading is accurate. Diamonds.co.nz offers gorgeous engagement rings in NZ and you can be absolutely sure that the stones are properly graded.
The Report Number
This is basically for administration purposes and in the unlikely event you lose your report, this number will help the issuing body to locate it.
The 4 Cs – Classification
First comes the carat classification, which is the weight of the stone, measured to the nearest one hundredth of a carat. Then comes the colour classification, which runs from D to Z, which covers a wide range of hues. The clarity grade is carried out by a diamond expert under 10x magnification, which will show up any imperfections. Finally, the cut grade runs from excellent to poor, and this grading tells you how much sparkle the stone has.
The clarity plot diagram is like a blueprint of the stone’s characteristics, with a green colour to indicate external blemishes, while inclusions are marked in red. These diagrams are not much use to the average person. Yet in the industry, dealers rely heavily on the technical data which tells them in detail exactly what the properties of the stone are.
Buy from a Recognised Diamond Dealer
If you are new to the diamond market, you really should buy from a reputable diamond dealer and make sure that all stones come with an official GIA report. It takes years to become competent at diamond grading, which is why we use GIA reports to establish the qualities of a particular stone. In the absence of such a report, you should not purchase from that dealer, no matter how cheap the stone is.
Online Diamond Merchants
Unless you can be sure of the validity of a gem dealer, you should only use online resources for research, at least until you become proficient at diamond identification. If, for example, you are looking to buy a diamond engagement ring, you can bypass all of the above by dealing with a recognised diamond merchant/jeweller and in the event you cannot find a suitable ring, the jeweller is quite capable of creating something to your specifications.