Picking the diamond perfect for your engagement ring is one of the most crucial decisions before the wedding. You’re probably going to wear this expensive piece of jewellery every day and so it’s best to know everything you can before you make a decision!
The 4Cs (something you’ve probably heard a 1000 times) are important to know since they’re the right way to go about selecting your diamond. After you read all about the 4Cs, (fret not, we’ve super-simplified it for you) do check out our tips at the end of the post that’ll help you make the best decision for yourself.
Diamonds 101: The Basics
As simple as it sounds, the cut is not just about the shape of the diamond, but really, the kind of light it emits. A diamond of the finest cut will have a brilliant brightness, fire that is scattering of white light into colours of the rainbow, and scintillation, that is essentially the sparkle that the diamond produces. The most premium cut is the round diamond. Apart from round, other shapes are Princess, Emerald, Asscher, Cushion, Marquise, Radiant, Oval, Pear, Heart, in the order of price range, with round being the most expensive, and heart being the least expensive.
Carat is basically the weight of the diamond. The more the weight of the diamond is the pricier it will be. The average price range of a one-carat carat diamond, based on the colour and clarity, goes up from 80,000-90,000 to 3-5 lakh rupees, depending on where you get it from. As you go up in size, the pricing from one carat to the next goes up by 3-5 times! Refer to the image above for the actual size for each carat.
Where colour is concerned, the most hue-less or clear the diamond is, the pricier it will be. The ideal diamond will have no colour, just like water. As you go down the scale of quality, the diamond gets more and more of a tinge, leaning towards yellow. The diamonds are judged on a scale from D-Z. It is easier to find better quality diamonds in south India (in cities such as Hyderabad and Chennai). Most jewellers in Delhi sell the K-N range.
The clarity of a diamond is one of the most important factors for judging its quality and only a trained eye will be able to tell how clear and free of blemishes a diamond is. To the naked eye, a VS1 and an SI2 diamond may look exactly the same, but these diamonds are quite different in terms of overall quality. Refer to the chart above for the range, with IF/Internally Flawless being the most clear. The diamonds available in the Indian market range from IF. S1 is the most commonly sold diamond by jewellers.
How to get the diamond you want, budgeting advice & shape+colour guide!
#1 Size Matters
Prefer quantity over quality? We don’t blame you. Big diamonds don’t come cheap, but if you do want a big ring on your finger (which we completely understand!) simply go down a few notches in colour and quality. Even going just a few points down in weight, say from 1 to 0.9, can help you save a lot of money, without compromising too much on the size! You can also go for a ring setting which will help your stone look bigger. Ask your jeweller, he’ll know!
#2 Quality Matters
Are you a sucker for great quality, but simply don’t have the budget for it? Size down, and simply cut down on the metal cost. For example, go for gold-plated for the ring instead of 22k gold. Also, compromising on the cut can save you up to 25% of the cost.
#3 Round is the Shape
Round is the most popular but also the most expensive shape! To save some money, go for cushion or oval shapes instead which cost lesser but are closest to the round shape.
Got room to splurge? We recommend going for something unique like pink or blue diamonds, which are super pretty, and will definitely make sure your ring stand out in the crowd of regular diamonds! However, it comes at a huge cost as a pink diamond will cost 5 times its equivalent in white, and blue, upto 20 times.
Certification really matters whether you’re buying gold or diamonds, to guarantee that you’re getting what you’re paying for. While shopping for your diamond ring can be super exciting and fun, it is important get a certificate. While there are many agencies for certification, make sure that your diamond is certified by a proper agency, GIA being the most trusted for this purpose. You can also take your jewellery to any of the branches of SGL (Solitaire Gemological Laboratory) or IGI (International Gemological Institute) to get the diamonds verified. You can later verify your report on SGL’s official website.