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The 4Cs of a Diamond


Mar 17, 2023

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All diamonds are beautiful and exquisite. So ultimately, the “right diamond” is about choosing the right one for you.

Nevertheless, here at Skylarc Diamonds, we understand that choosing a diamond can be an overwhelming decision and would love to guide you through this process.

The common starting point is what is known as the “4Cs” of diamond grading as created by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA). This now generally accepted as the universal method of assessing the quality of any diamond.

Carat size

After determining the shape of a diamond, the carat size is the feature of most concern. The carat size measures how much a diamond weights.One “carat” is 200 milligrams and each carat is subdivided into 100 “points”.


This refers to the absence of blemishes and inclusions which are small crystals which can become trapped in a diamond when it is forming. As these crystals grow, irregularities in their atomic structure can develop - these irregulars or imperfections are called "inclusions". It is the size, position and visibility of inclusions that impact diamond clarity.

In terms of diamond grading your GIA or IGI certified diamond could be 1 of 11 grades:

  1. Flawless (FL): no inclusions and no blemishes visible under 10x magnification

  2. Internally Flawness (IF): there are no inclusions visible under 10x magnification

  3. Very, Very slightly included (VVS1 and VVS2): inclusions are so slight they are difficult for a skilled grader to see under 10x magnification;

  4. Very Slightly Included (VS1 and VS2): inclusions are observed with effort under 10x magnification, but can be characterized as minor;

  5. Slightly Included (SI1 and SI2): inclusions are noticeable under 10x magnification; and

  6. Included (I1, I2 and I3): inclusions are obvious under 10x magnification which may affect transparency and brilliance.


A diamond’s cut is really about how week a diamond’s facets interact with light. Other than determining the shape of the stone, the proportions of diamond will affect its ability to reflect light and provide a diamond's stunning brilliance. A GIA or IGI certified diamond will also have their "polish" and "symmetry" graded as sub-components of the cut. The polish refers to the smoothness and mirrorlike fish of each facet of the diamond as a result of the polishing process. The symmetry assess the shape, uniformity and alignment of the diamond's facets. GIA gives an overall cut grading from Excellent to Poor. IGI, on the other hand, gives an overall cut grading ranging from Ideal to Poor. In respect of polish and symmetry, both GIA and IGI grade these on a scale from Excellent to Poor.


In terms of grading, when we say colour, we mean the lack of colour.A structurally perfect diamond has no hue. Many of the colour distinctions within diamonds are, however, so subtle they are invisible to the untrained eye.Both GIA and IGI grade colour from a scale from D to Z. Again, the perfect diamond is the one that is right for you – let us help source the diamond with the specifications you are looking for!

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