First, Focus On the Cut
The cut of a diamond determines its shine and shape. A well-cut diamond reflects light beautifully and gives you a brilliant sparkle, whereas a diamond that is cut too deep or shallow does not reflect light as well and is considered low quality. Choose the highest quality of cut in your diamonds that you can afford. According the GIA, an “Excellent Cut” diamond is of the highest quality and also the most expensive. It will be smart of you to choose a “Very Good” if not “Excellent” grade diamond, which will still be a high-quality stone but relatively less expensive.
The shape is one of the most important aspects of buying diamonds. If you are buying a loose diamond for an engagement ring it will be a great idea to ask the receiver what they would prefer. But if you absolutely do not want to ask and spoil the surprise, then stick to a classic. The most common shapes are: round, princess and cushion-cut. Go for a non-traditional diamond shape like marquise, pear or heart only if you are sure that your partner is into that!
Now, the Clarity and Color
Diamond are formed deep inside the earth’s crust and most of them have some flaws. These little flaws are known as “inclusions”. Most diamonds have imperfections that cannot be seen with the naked eye, and some do not have any imperfections at all. A diamond with no imperfections is known as “flawless”, it is very rare and very expensive. Honestly, it is a good idea to buy a diamond with a lower clarity than flawless as it will still look clean and perfect without magnification and you will save money that you can then invest on the cut or carat of the loose diamonds you’re buying.
Most diamonds have a very slight yellow tint which again, is hardly visible without comparing with other diamonds. Completely colorless stones are rare, expensive and of the highest quality. While choosing the color of your loose diamond, remember that the cut, shape and color of the metal used in your ring’s setting will affect the color of your stone. For example, a rose or yellow gold setting is more forgiving for tinted diamonds. So while you are buying a loose diamond, instead of getting a colorless stone, choose a slightly tinted diamond that will not make a big difference and look just as beautiful in a ring.
Last But Not the Least: Carat
A diamond’s weight and size is measured in carats. The more carats a diamond has, the most expensive it will be. The weight of a diamond will not affect the quality of the stone; the important part is to find the right balance between the carat weight and cut of the loose diamond that you choose. Size does matter but bigger is not always better. Picking a diamond size depends on the ring style you want, balance between all the 4Cs and your budget. So, look if everything makes sense in the bigger picture while you’re buying loose diamonds.