I know many potential diamond buyers spend a lot of time researching and trying to understand the different diamond characteristics. Most people do this because they want to select the best stone to match their lifestyle, needs and budget.
When it comes to diamonds, color is often a major consideration for consumers looking to buy engagement rings. In most markets, colorless diamonds are preferred over those with color tints because of social stigma.
Colored diamonds, on the other hand, represent a niche market for shoppers who prefer to see saturated colors in their jewelry. Did you know that fancy colored diamonds can come in various shades of yellow, blue, green, red, purple, pink and even as mixtures of different colors?
The most common causation of color is due to the presence of trace elements inside the diamond’s chemical composition. For instance, the presence of nitrogen gives the diamond a yellowish tint. Since nitrogen is so abundant in the environment (about 70% of air is made up of nitrogen), it is no surprise that the majority of diamonds display yellowish tones. On the other hand, the presence of Boron results in a bluish looking diamond which is super rare and is highly valuable.
In nature, when diamonds are formed or deposited near radiation sources deep within the Earth, a colorless rough diamond can turn green overtime. The intensity of the green hue is directly proportional to the type of radiation (gamma/neutron radiation yields better colors) and the duration in which the diamond was exposed to.
Sometimes, rough diamonds with sizable mineral inclusions like peridots (dark green) or garnets (red) may exhibit color flashes based on the color it picks up from the inclusions.
Another phenomenon which can create fancy colored diamonds comes via strain and color zone defects in the crystal lattice. As a result of a distorted lattice, the diamond absorbs certain wavelengths of light which causes it display unusual colors. Perhaps the most famous examples of such diamonds are the pink Argyle diamonds.
The Pink Jubilee was uncovered in Argyle on Feb 22, 2013 by mining company Rio Tinto.
Did you know that colored diamonds can be artificially created in the laboratory? This is usually achieved through irradiation or heat treatment processes. With these methods, less attractive rough stones can be turned into richly colored diamonds which makes them more salable.
Synthetic diamonds can also be created from scratch in the lab. You see, natural fancy colored diamonds are extremely rare and this makes them really pricey. The synthetic options make it affordable to people who want to own fancy colored stone without having to pay 6-7 figures price tags.
If you find a colored diamond with prices that are too good to be true or if you come across one that is being marketed as a deal of the century, you can always assume its color has been manipulated.
You get what you pay for: always remember this rule.
That said, I have nothing against synthetic or treated diamonds as they satisfy demand in a certain market segment. The important point I want to highlight here is that you should be paying the right price for the right stone.
The price difference between a natural and a synthetic colored diamond is enormous. If a diamond is being sold as a natural stone, make it a point to request for a certificate or GIA grading report because it helps validate its authenticity.
– How Are Fancy Colored Diamonds Graded?
Fancy colored diamonds are graded differently from diamonds in the traditional D-Z color scale. Besides using different nomenclatures, the methodology used is also different. Find out more information in this article.
– How Pink Diamonds Are Formed?
Owning a pink diamond is like a dream come true for many women. However, they come at a high price due to their extreme rarity in nature. This article will take you behind the scenes to how they are formed.