Howard Miller Jewelers

The 4 C's of Diamonds

Cut - What is the proportion of the diamond? Round brilliant diamonds are commonly cut with 58 facets. The better proportioned these facets are on the diamond, the more light will be reflected back to the viewer's eye. This is extremely important. When cut properly, the diamond will sparkle more. Cut also refers to the shape such as: round, pear, and oval.

Carat - How big is the diamond? Larger diamonds often cost more per carat due to their size. There are 100 points to a carat. Hence a 50 point diamond is 1/2 a carat (there are 5 carats to a gram). It is more precise to use the actual point size of a diamond rather than a fractional weight.

Clarity - How clear is the stone? Clarity ranges from flawless (perfect) to I (included). Here is a breakdown:

  • Flawless: flawless inside and out - no inclusions visible with 10x magnification
  • Internally Flawless: may have minor blemishes on the outside
  • VVS1, VVS2: have very very small imperfections. VVS2 imperfections are more visible than WS1.
  • VS1, VS2: have very small inclusions. VS1 imperfections are harder to see than VS2.
  • SI1, SI2, SI3: have small imperfections
  • I1, I2, I3: have imperfections visible to the naked eye

Color - Diamond colors generally range from D - Z for white and yellow diamonds. D is the whitest. Around Z they start to become 'fancy' yellow diamonds.

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