Q.I haven’t had time to do a research. What are the basics I should know before buying a diamond?
A. This mainly applies to diamonds but stands true for most other gems as well.
Know about the 4Cs.
Cut- They come in many shapes such as round, princess, baguette, trapeze, half moon, emerald, pear etc. You can select the contour best suited for your personality. For example, to make your fingers look long & slender use the marquise or pear shaped diamond in the ring.
Colour - A pure flawless diamond appears clear and colourless in light. Chemical imperfections bring about a change in its hues and colours thus rendering them cheaper. But rare and naturally occurring coloured diamonds like the red ones are much sought after, despite the impurities which give them the colour. Thus more expensive.
Carat - One carat is equal to 200 milligrams. It is derived from the Arabic word ‘quirat’ used for the seeds of the ‘carob’ tree which are of uniform size. It is not to be confused with the unit of purity of Gold which is a ‘karat’. At 3,106.75 carats (621.35gms.) the Cullinan Diamond is the largest gem quality diamond ever found!
Clarity - Sheer transparency without any blemishes and inclusions stands for the clarity of a diamond. You should check for faults like air bubbles, cracks, polish scratches, foreign crystals etc.
There is a fifth C too. The Certificate. Any good diamond comes with a certificate. Ask for it.