What's the most important diamond characteristic? Chances are you've looked up some information already. Now you just need to know how to prioritize it. You know the 4 Cs of diamonds. Order of importance matters though. Each of the 4 Cs is important, but do you know which is most crucial?
The 4 Cs include carat weight, color, clarity, and cut. Let's start with carat weight. This is the least important C. It's true that even if a diamond looks slightly similar in appearance, a slight change in carat weight can mean thousands of dollars of difference in price.
At the same time, carat weight is modified by the other factors – you can pick up a big, brown diamond on the cheap that lacks visual quality so much so that you can’t even see through it. This extreme shows that carat weight isn't everything, It's only when the other 3 Cs are present that carat weight matters. Its value relies on those other factors.
Color is important in a diamond. The less color, the higher the grade of diamond. Color doesn't change over time since it relates to the chemical composition of the diamond itself. A colorless diamond is typically more valuable because it allows light to pass through more easily.
There's a separate rating scale for diamonds that are naturally colored red, green, blue, pink, or in other colors. Color here refers more to the amount of light that a diamond will allow to pass through.
All that said, the carat weight and color don't matter if a diamond is rife with inclusions. Inclusions are natural blemishes in the diamond. These will often form because of other chemicals that get into the diamond. Sometimes, inclusions can make a diamond more beautiful by adding color, but they demand diamond cutters to carefully work around them.
Typically, inclusions are not desired, and there's an extensive ranking system. The most beautiful and valuable diamonds will be ranked F for flawless.
The most important diamond characteristic is cut. You can have a diamond with carat weight, color, and clarity that doesn't look like much of anything. That's because it needs a precise cut. Elongated shapes like ovals can communicate a diamond that's larger than it actually is. Color that has a sparkle to it can be made into a brilliantly fiery diamond by a cut that reflects and refracts the light at clever angles.
The cut of a diamond also impacts its clarity, even covering inclusions. You can compromise on some other factors so long as the cut of the diamond compensates for them in smart ways. This can be a way to get a beautiful diamond that looks outside your price range.
A diamond's cut is also its design. It's where the artist steps in to create something that uniquely speaks to you. When it comes to the 4 Cs of diamonds, order of importance is vital. Some may shift color and clarity back and forth in the #2 spot.
Remember that your goal is to find the best balance of all these factors together. If one falls very short, the others can only compensate for so much. In that way, each factor works in harmony with the others. Your ideal choice will be a diamond that gets each of these factors working together to create something extraordinary.