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The Essential Diamond Guide

Looking to buy or sell diamonds? Our essential diamond guide covers the key diamond characteristics and explains how diamonds are priced.

diamond guide

What Our Diamond Guide Covers:

  1. What Are The 4 C’s Of Diamond Grading?
  2. Diamond Retail Prices vs Diamond Wholesale Prices
  3. Carat Weight
  4. Diamond Shape
  5. Diamond Color
  6. Diamond Clarity
  7. Diamond Fluorescence
  8. Diamond Cut

What Are The 4 C’s Of Diamond Grading?

Our diamond guide explores every element of a diamond and how they affects their value, either positively or negatively. The classical variables of diamond valuation are known as the 4 C’s: Cut, Clarity, Color, Carat (weight/size). There are many more factors, which you will be able to discover more about here.

WP Diamonds provides a precise value through an expert valuation for your rings, jewelry, or loose diamonds. Often, the condition of a used diamond is a key component in its valuation. Although the hardest natural material known to man, second hand diamonds may be chipped, abraded, or broken. The GIA have made a series of videos regarding grading which you can see here. Brilliance has a great diamond education section for you to learn more. You can also see the GIA education guide on their website

Diamond Retail Values vs. Diamond Wholesale Values

The reality is the price you paid for your piece and its resale value now are going to be quite different. A good analogy is driving a new car off the lot; your purchase no longer carries the same value. With diamonds, it can be even less…However, if you bought your diamond jewelry many years ago, you might have more than recouped the difference. Diamond prices can rise significantly during boom years, so if you timed the purchase right, your assets could have appreciated in value.

diamond guide

Factors That Impact Diamond Prices

Here, we list the major factors taken into consideration when valuing diamonds:

Diamond Size: Carat Weight

Larger is better and the “magic sizes” play a large role. Magic sizes include 0.50 cts, 1.00 cts, 2.00 cts, 5.00 cts.

Once you pass a magic size, the price per carat increases. For example, a 1.00 ct stone is worth approximately 15-20% more per carat than a 0.90 ct stone. The same goes for a 5.00 ct versus a 4.90 ct.

Diamond Shape

Rounds are more valuable; cushions, princess cuts, radiants and asschers are also very popular, but worth much less than rounds.

Emerald cuts, ovals and pears are worth even less and marquises are worth less still. This predicated upon fashion trends and the size and shape of a diamond that can be cut from a piece of rough diamond.

Diamond Color

D is the most valuable on the D-Z color grade scale.

Fancy colors are even more valuable than D color with reds, blues, and green diamonds being the most valuable diamond colors.

Diamond Clarity

Clarity grades range from I3 (on the low end) to FL (on the high end).

  • Does the diamond look clear to the naked eye or not? The clearer it is the higher a clarity grade it will have.
  • The more inclusions a diamond has, the lower the clarity grade and lower the value.

Diamond Fluorescence

  • Fluorescence is a negative for diamonds with D-H color (as much as -15% for a D color IF diamond).
  • Fluorescence can actually be moderately positive for the value of diamonds with I or lower color.

Diamond Cut

Only rounds are given cut grades by GIA, they range from Poor to Excellent.

  • Excellent cut is optimal and worth approximately 15% more than a Very Good (VG) cut, which is worth approximately 15% more than a Good (G) cut.
  • A triple EX grade (i.e. EX cut, EX polish and EX symmetry) is generally worth 7-10% more than a triple VG grade.

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535 5th Avenue, 11th Floor,
New York, New York
10017, USA

Berkeley Square House
Berkeley Square, Mayfair
London, W1J 6BD, UK

212 JQ Modern
120 Vyse Street, Hockley
Birmingham, B18 6NF, UK

6 Duddell Street,
Suite 604
Central, Hong Kong

N&E BLD., 5th Floor
1-12-4 Ginza, Chuo-ku
Tokyo 104-0061, Japan
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