The Four C’s
No matter the gemological institution, no two diamonds are the same, and there are still discrepancies that are up for interpretation. The four Cs are what the price of your diamond is based on, not the value; you attribute that yourself by the life events, memories, and loved ones you connect to it. At the end of the day, a diamond’s worth is what you deem it. The four Cs are simply there to guide you to your perfect stone with the criteria:
- Carat: The unit of measuring a diamond’s weight. One carat is equal to 0.2 grams, about the same weight as a paperclip. A carat is divisible into one hundred points; for example, a 40-point diamond weighs 0.40 carats.
- Color: Diamonds are also priced on their color, or rather the lack thereof. The less color a diamond has, the greater their value, with the exception of fancy-color diamonds such as blues or pinks. They are judged by the Gemological Institute of America’s D-Z Color Grading Scale, with D being colorless and Z being light yellow or brown. Each letter grade is clearly defined by comparing new stones to ones with a predetermined letter grade in controlled lighting.
- Clarity: The clarity of a diamond is affected by two different types of visual obscurers: inclusions (internal) and blemishes (external). They are graded on a scale with eleven grades, from flawless to obvious inclusions. They are judged on how visible they will be under a 10x magnification.
- Cut: The cut of a diamond determines a diamond’s fire, sparkle, and brilliance and is graded on a scale from Excellent to Poor. It refers to the stone’s proportions, symmetry, and polish. While the most standard cut in the industry is a round brilliant, there are other fancy cuts such as pear, emerald, oval, and many others. Avilan offers unique, bigger option with our Smart Cut diamonds.
Diamonds have captivated the attention of mankind for millennia, becoming a symbol of eternal love for centuries. It is renown for its everlasting endurance, rarity, and brilliance, a gem so beautiful that it is hard to believe it came from such humble beginnings as carbon atoms. Diamonds are typically formed in the earth’s mantle 90 to 120 miles beneath the surface in ancient and stable tectonic plates, where temperatures are at a minimum of 2000 degrees Fahrenheit and the pressure is immense. Over millions of years, the intense heat and pressure slowly force the carbon atoms to form strong, four-way covalent bonds, resulting in crystal growth. As more carbon atoms move into the vicinity and attach, the crystal grows until it forms an orderly, crystalline structure. This process is arduous and long, as most diamonds date back over a billion years. Once the diamonds are formed, they are brought to the surface by deep-seated volcanic eruptions that carry them from Earth’s mantle to the surface very quickly; is the eruption was slow, the diamonds would turn into graphite (another carbon-centric formation) along the way. So only through patience and time are diamonds formed, and only through intense and accelerated volcanic eruptions are they brought to the surface.
Diamonds may be the hardest substance on Earth, but they are not indestructible. Taking care of your treasure is important if your want your jewelry to last as long as your memories that are tied to it.
- Keeping Your Diamond Clean:
- Handle your diamonds sparingly, as the oil from your skin can alter the way it looks.
- Clean your diamond regularly by letting it soak in an ammonia-based house cleaner overnight once every two weeks. In the morning, remove it from the cleaner and use a soft, clean toothbrush to get rid of any leftover dirt or oils. Be delicate, especially with the fragile settings, and then rinse with water and dry with a soft, lint-free cloth.
- Be careful to avoid chlorine or abrasives when wearing or cleaning your jewelry, as they erode some metals and can risk the settings of your diamond.
- General Care:
- Don’t wear your diamond if you’re doing rough work. Even though a diamond is durable, a hard blow can result in a scratch or chip.
- Once your done wearing it for the day, keep your pieces in a fabric-lined jewelry box with compartments or dividers to prevent any bumping or scratching.
- Inscribe your diamond. It not only personalizes your piece, but it also offers an extra layer of security and protection should you ever lose your diamond or have it stolen. All Avilan diamonds come with unique stock numbers and security engravings, offering multiple layers of protection.
- Don’t leave your ring on the rim of a sink when washing your hands; it can easily slip down the drain. Instead, place it either if a clean soap dish by the sink or in your purse if you are not at home.
- Visit your jeweler at least once a year to check your settings and mountings. This usually includes a professional cleaning as well.