What is the most important diamond characteristic?
This is a very controversial topic to make my first blog post about but nonetheless, here we go! Before, I get into the answer and why, I want to give a brief recap of the key diamond specifications, also known as the 4 Cs:
- Color: As the name suggests, this grades the color of a diamond (or technically, the lack of color). The color grade starts at D (colorless) and runs all the way to Z (light yellow)
- Clarity: Clarity measures how clear a diamond is i.e lack of inclusions and blemishes. The number, size and position of these imperfections determine the clarity grade. The grade starts from Flawless and ends at i3 (which means it has imperfections that are most likely visible to the naked eye)
- Cut: This grades how well the diamond was cut which impacts the way it sparkles. The way a diamond is cut (proportion & symmetry) determines how it reacts to light and this quality is what allows diamonds to 'bling.' The grade scale goes from Excellent to Poor
- Carat: This measures how much a diamond weighs; a carat is 200 milligrams.
Ok, now that we have gotten through the refresher, it's time for an answer. Drumroll please......and the winner is...the diamond color. The reason being that it is the characteristic that is most visible to the naked eye as you move down and up the grading scale. This is why I usually recommend clients to pick a diamond with a J grade or better. I have found this to be the sweet spot for most diamond shapes as it is almost always white to the naked (untrained) eye with very small hints of yellow.
Ideally, one should select a diamond that performs well on all 4 dimensions, but if compromise is needed, the last area you want to do so on is the color.