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Natural or Enhanced Colored Diamonds read this article and find out the difference


Everyone is familiar with the colorless diamonds that we see everyday in wedding, and anniversary rings. They are usually full of fire, brilliance and sparkle as the light hits the diamond at different angles, but did you know there are many other colors that diamonds can come in. Some of these are natural and usually very expensive, others have been treated to bring out spectacular colors from Blues to Greens to Pinks, Reds, Yellows, and Purple.

The diamonds that have colors that fall outside of the grading standard D-Z color range are called Fancy Colored Diamonds. Let us look at the D-Z color range, these are graded through the pavilion (face down) as this is a universally accepted grading system that measures the absence of color (yellow) in a diamond.

D-F     ____________      Colorless
G-J     ____________      Near Colorless
K-M    ____________      Faint Yellow Color
N-R    ____________      Very Light Yellow Color
S-Z     ____________      Light Yellow Color

The most prized and most valuable are the Colorless (D-F), with most commercial diamonds that you will find in jewelry stores fall into the G-H-I range. When you look at diamonds in this range, face up; it will look colorless to you.

Colored diamonds are now a very important part of the Jewellery business as they offer something different, but are still the hardest gemstone known to man and therefore wear exceptionally well. There are both natural and color enhanced (treated) diamonds that you will see in jewellery. Natural Colored diamonds other than Brown, Black or Grey are rare and usually are very expensive with a Fancy Vivid Pink being the most valuable. Colored diamonds are graded face up using Hue, Tone, Saturation and Depth of Color and grading ranges from Faint to Fancy Deep.

One of the most famous Natural Colored Diamonds is the "The Hope", a Fancy Deep greyish Blue that weighs in at 45.52 carats. The diamond has a long history from the 17th century and has been owned by many famous people including Louise XIV, Henry Philip Hope, Evalyn Walsh McLean and Harry Winston who in 1958 donated it to the Smithsonian Institute in Washington D.C. where is on public display today.

For most of us the cost of Natural Colored Diamonds can be prohibitive, however, we can still purchase treated diamonds that show stunning colors. The most common and stable of these treatments today is irradiation, as it penetrates the diamond and is usually permanent. The only caution is to make sure that the goldsmith that does any repairs on the ring knows the diamond is treated, as heat from a soldering torch can impact the color. Irradiation is safe, as today’s process makes sure there is no residual radiation left in the diamond. This process was first used back in 1904 and today enhanced diamonds are a cost effect way to get the beautiful colors in diamonds, without buying natural colored diamonds.

You will see today many colored diamonds offered in jewellers, and it is incumbent upon the seller to inform his customer that he is purchasing enhanced diamonds. You will find colors like, blue, green, purple, pink, yellows, browns, and reds all waiting for you to add them to your jewellery collection.

Maybe, your next ring or pair of earrings will be Ocean Blue Diamonds, and you will be the envy of all your friends.

Please visit us at Jewels by Truros

Derek Parnell is a Graduate Gemologist (GIA) and owner of Jewels by Truros a division of Truros Corporation. Truros Corporation has interests in the Jewelry and the Real Estate Industry. For more information you can reach Derek at  Jewels by Truros.


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