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Understanding the Terminology in Diamonds


One thing we often get asked at Hancocks is to explain the different gradings of diamonds.

Within the trade these gradings are also referred to the 4 C’s of diamonds which are carat weight, colour, clarity, and cut. These four factors determine the quality and value of a diamond.

What is Carat weight:

Carat weight refers to the size of the diamond, measured in carats. One carat is equivalent to 0.2 grams, and the weight of a diamond is often rounded to the nearest hundredth of a carat. The larger the diamond, the higher the carat weight, and the more expensive it will be.

What are the diamond colour grades:

Diamond colour refers to the amount of colour or lack of colour in the stone. The Gemmological Institute of America (GIA) colour scale ranges from D (colourless) to Z (light yellow or brown). Colourless diamonds are the most valuable and rare, while those with a noticeable yellow or brown tint are less valuable. As a luxury jeweller, here at Hancocks we stock the top 4 most valuable diamond colour grades (D to G) to ensure we have a range of affordability and opulence.

How to define diamond clarity:

Diamond clarity refers to the number, position and size of inclusions or blemishes within the stone. Inclusions are internal flaws, while blemishes are external flaws. The GIA clarity scale ranges from flawless (no inclusions or blemishes visible under 10x magnification) to included (inclusions or blemishes visible to the naked eye). The clearer the diamond, the more valuable it will be.

What does diamond cut mean:

Diamond cut refers to the angles, proportions, and symmetry of the diamond. A well-cut diamond reflects light well and sparkles more, making it more valuable than a poorly cut diamond. The GIA cut scale ranges from excellent to poor. Our diamond engagement rings in Manchester are all an exquisite cut, you can browse our extensive range of diamonds here.

Together, the 4 Cs determine the quality and value of a diamond. When choosing a diamond, it’s essential to consider all four factors and find a balance between them that fits your budget and preferences. A high-quality diamond with good cut, colour, and clarity may be more valuable than a larger diamond with lower quality in these areas. Ultimately, the right diamond is one that is meaningful and special to you and your partner.