The 4 C's

Diamonds with the combination of the highest 4C ratings are more rare and, consequently, more expensive. 

No one C is more important than another in terms of beauty and it is important to note that each of the 4Cs will not diminish in value over time.


  • Based on scientific formulas, a well-cut diamond will internally reflect light from one mirror-like facet to another and disperse and reflect it through the top of the stone. This results in a display of brilliance and fire, thereby placing well-cut diamonds higher on the Diamond Quality Pyramid than deep or shallow-cut diamonds. Diamonds that are cut too deep or too shallow lose or leak light through the side or bottom, resulting in less brilliance and ultimately, value.

  • Cut also refers to shape—round, square, pear, or heart for example. Since a round diamond is symmetrical and capable of reflecting nearly all the light that enters, it is the most brilliant of all diamond shapes and follows specific proportional guidelines. Ask a jeweler at The Jewelry Source to find out more about these guidelines.

  • Non-round shapes, also known as “fancy shapes,” will have their own guidelines to be considered well-cut.


  • Diamonds range in color from icy winter whites to warm summer whites. Diamonds are graded on a color scale established by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) which ranges from D (colorless) to Z.

  • Warmer colored diamonds (K–Z) are particularly desirable when set in yellow gold. Icy winter whites (D–J) look stunning set in white gold or platinum.

  • Color differences are very subtle and it is very difficult to see the difference between, say, an E and an F. Therefore, colors are graded under controlled lighting conditions and are compared to a master set for accuracy.Truly colorless stones, graded D, treasured for their rarity, are highest on the Diamond Quality Pyramid. Color, however, ultimately comes down to personal taste. Ask a jeweler at The Jewelry Source to show you a variety of color grades next to one another to help you determine your color preference.


  • Inclusions are natural identifying characteristics such as minerals or fractures, appearing while diamonds are formed in the earth. They may look like tiny crystals, clouds or feathers.

  • To view inclusions, jewelers use a magnifying loupe. This tool allows jewelers to see a diamond at 10x its actual size so that inclusions are easier to see. The position of inclusions can affect the value of a diamond. There are very few flawless diamonds found in nature, thus these diamonds are much more valuable.

  • Inclusions are ranked on a scale of perfection, known as clarity, which was established by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA). The clarity scale, ranging from F (Flawless) to Included (I), is based on the visibility of inclusions at a magnification of 10x.

  • Some inclusions can be hidden by a mounting, thus having little effect on the beauty of a diamond. An inclusion in the middle or top of a diamond could affect the dispersion of light, sometimes making the diamond less brilliant.

  • The greater a diamond's clarity, the more brilliant, valuable and rare it is—and the higher it is on the Diamond Quality Pyramid.


  • Carat is often confused with size even though it is actually a measure of weight. One carat is equivalent to 200 milligrams. One carat can also be divided into 100 “points.” A .75 carat diamond is the same as a 75-points or 3/4 carat diamond.

  • A 1-carat diamond costs exactly twice the price of a half-carat diamond, right? Wrong. Since larger diamonds are found less frequently in nature, which places them at the rarest level of the Diamond Quality Pyramid, a 1-carat diamond will cost more than twice a 1/2-carat diamond (assuming color, clarity and cut remain constant).

  • Cut and mounting can make a diamond appear larger (or smaller) than its actual weight. So talk to us to find the right diamond and setting to optimize the beauty of your stone.


When you start to think about buying a diamond—and the love it will symbolize—you naturally want the best you can afford and a beautiful stone you will treasure forever.

Diamonds can be found in a range of price—and you're certain to find one within the Diamond Quality Pyramid that suits your taste and what you plan to spend. If you're about to buy a Diamond Engagement Ring, You may want to consider spending the commonly accepted guideline of two months’ salary. But it's up to you to settle on a diamond that will truly represent your deepest emotions and the promise for the future you will share.


Diamond certificates, more accurately known as diamond grading reports, are commonly provided with the purchase of a significant piece of diamond jewelry such as a diamond engagement ring. These reports are prepared by independent, certified gemologists from laboratories around the world and can help calculate the specific characteristics of your diamonds

(color, cut, clarity and carat weight, for example).


What's Included in a Diamond Grading Report?

  • A diamond grading report will commonly include a plotted diagram of your diamond and all significant characteristics, including the 4 C’s (cut, color, clarity, carat weight).

  • The report will also describe the diamond's shape, exact measurements, proportions and depth percentages as well as grade the polish and symmetry.

  • It should also comment on the characteristics like fluorescence, graining, and any imperfections in the diamond.

  • Please note: a grading report does not include an appraisal or any kind of statement of monetary worth of the diamond.

  • Grading reports simply state the scientific facts of your diamond that can be evaluated by highly standardized criteria.

The best way to understand your diamond grading report is to schedule an appointment with The Jewelry Source. This way, we can explain to you each portion of the certificate while visually examining your diamond with you. Grading a diamond is only partially scientific; a brief meeting with us can help you understand what the certificate really means.

Benefits to Getting a Diamond Grading Report

  • Diamond grading reports assure you of the quality and authenticity of your diamond.

  • As most consumers are not experts, a certificate is an objective comparison.

  • In addition, some insurance may require a grading report if you are planning to insure the diamond.

Does a Diamond Grading Report Increase the Value of My Diamond?

  • Certification of a diamond does not increase the value of your diamond.

  • Certification is only a safeguard for the consumer as it is affirmation of your diamond's authenticity and specific characteristics.

  • Therefore, the certification in itself is a valuable document.

How Much Does it Cost? How Long Will it Take?

  • Depending on the laboratory used the process for a diamond grading report can vary anywhere from 2 weeks or longer.

  • The fee for a grading report varies depending on the carat weight of your diamond.

  • Many labs charge approximately $75 for the first carat.

  • If your diamond is larger than 1 carat, the price then increases incrementally in relationship to carat weight.

  • For exact prices, we suggest you contact specific labs to get price quotes.

Some well-known organizations that provide grading reports include;

The Jewelry Source can help aid you in acquiring a grading report through one of these labs either at the time of purchase or after.

Current facts

  • Most people are unaware of the role diamonds play in bringing real benefits to people in the countries around the world where diamonds are sourced.  

  • Nowhere is this more evident than in Africa.  It is also in Africa that this same resource has been used to fund conflict.  

  • In 2000, a coalition of governments, non-governmental organizations and the diamond industry worked together to address this issue.  

  • In 2002, they established the Kimberley Process Certification System, an UN-backed process that has virtually eliminated the trade of conflict diamonds.  

  • Today, over 99% of the worlds' supply of diamonds is from sources free from conflict.

At The Jewelry Source, we buy our loose diamonds only from diamond wholesales who are committed to eradicating conflict diamonds.  Our vendors and we adhere to the jewelry industry's System of Warranties, which states:

"The diamonds herein invoiced have been purchased from legitimate sources not involved in funding conflict and in compliance with United Nations Resolutions.  The undersigned hereby guarantees that these diamonds are conflict free, based on personal knowledge and/or written guarantees provided by the supplier of these diamonds."


An estimated 5 million people have access to appropriate healthcare thanks to revenues from diamonds.

Conflict diamonds have been reduced from approximately 4% to considerable less than 1% since the implementation of the Kimberley Process in 2003.

  • An estimated 10 million people globally are directly or indirectly supported by the diamond industry.

  • The diamond mining industry generates over 40% of the Namibia's annual export earnings.

  • Diamond revenues enable every child in Botswana to receive free education up to the age of 13.

  • In July 2000, the global diamond industry announced its zero tolerance policy towards conflict diamonds and continues to drive this policy.

  • Sierra Leone is now at peace and exports approximately $142 million dollars diamonds per year.

  • Over one million people are employed by the diamond industry in India. $8.4 billion worth of diamonds a year come from African countries.

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Bothell, WA