Everything you wanted to know about diamonds.

4 C's

The diamond is without a doubt the most precious gem on earth. It is scratch resistant and extremely durable. A diamond will be equally beautiful and sparkle after even a hundred years of wear. Diamond has a symbolic meaning, it  stands for purity, courage and commitment.

Diamonds come in different colors which are indicated on an international scale, ranging from colorless to intense. Extremely rare variations are intensely yellow, blue, rose, green ...

The quality and value of the diamond depends on four criteria, all together they make each gemstone unique.

1. Carat = Weight

The first diamonds were discovered in India around 500 BC. Already in ancient times carats was used as a weight unit, it was based on the weight of the seed of the carob tree (0.2gr). Today, we weight  diamonds through a metric system. The instruments used for this are for example the Moh gauge.

It is obvious that the larger the diamond and the weight how rare, and therefore, will be invaluable the diamond.

It is obvious that a larger diamond, with its weight will be more rare to find and thus of higher value

Many people confuse gold karat with diamond carat. It is therefore important to know that diamond carat is not the same as gold karat. Diamond carat is a weight, gold karat is an alloy. 

2. Cut = Shape

By the end of the 17th century the Venetian engraver Vincenzo Peruzzi developed a diamondcut with 58 facets, the precursor to today's brilliant cutting.

Because of the optimal ratios of the modern brilliant  it allows the diamond to attrack light and pull the arrows of light into the stone creating a playful game of reflections.

The shape that is given to the diamond depends on the original shape of the rough stone. The most desired shapes /cuts are: oval, round (brilliant), pear, emerald, heart, cushion, and the marquis. However, everything depends on your personal preference.

3. Color = White/Fancy 

Diamonds can occur in all ranges of colours, from brownish to striking yellow, pink, purple, red, blue and green. These are called 'fancy colours'.

Although it is still the colorless (white) color that is most coveted . The most traded diamonds are colorless to light yellowish.

The colour grade is determined by comparison with a series of master stones, the best grade being colourless - a perfect diamond has no colour at all (D Colour: Exceptional White +).

 A diamond exists for 99.95% out of pure carbon. The factors that can influencing the color are:

  • nitrogen = yellow
  • boron = blue
  • crystalline impurities = pink, champagne, brown and red
  • natural radiation = green

Some diamonds react to UV-light (black light) with a grading scale for fluorescence, which ranges from 'nil', 'slight' or 'medium' to 'strong'. This fluorescence is caused by a reaction of the light with the atoms of the stone.

4. Clarity = Purity

With clarity, we describe a diamond's purity. As they are a product of nature, all natural diamonds have traces of their growth history. Most diamonds originate with "birthmarks" known as inclusions.

In gem quality diamonds these are minor internal characteristics. The clarity scale reflects the size, number and location of the characteristics when examined with a 10 x loupe. Diamonds that have no inclusions visible to the naked eye are of excellent quality. The very best - and rarest - clarity is called 'loupe clean'. This means that upon examining the diamond with a loupe, no inclusions can be found.More than any other gemstone diamonds are capable of brilliance.

The clarity of the diamond can be affected by two types of impurities:

EXTERNAL impurities: These are surface impurities due to wear and tear or damage during grinding.

INTERNAL impurities (inclusions): Are impurities located inside the stone. There exist numerous inclusion types.

Diamonds from Martens do not have inclusions that can be seen through the naked eye and therefor top quality.