Facts About Diamonds

diamond rings

Buying a diamond is a special purchase – one that should bring you joy, not uncertainty! The endless information about diamonds online can be overwhelming, and we want make sure that you find the right stone for you. Our experts are here to help answer all of your questions so your diamond purchase is comfortable, well-informed and regret-free.

There is no better way to choose a diamond than to compare them side by side. Two stones might have the same cut, clarity, color and size, but have a completely different sparkle that you won’t be able to see by looking at a screen or examining them one at a time. Please come in and compare for yourself the variety of diamonds we keep in store. If you don’t find one that feels right, we can bring in more for you to look at in a matter of days, no commitment necessary. After all, when it comes to making such a special purchase, your preference is the only preference that matters. We’ll help you find a beautiful diamond you feel confident about purchasing.

Don’t see the answer to your question or want more info? Contact one of our experts directly!

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diamond stone

You’ve picked out your stone, now what?

Our master jewelry designers can create a one-of-a-kind custom setting that will showcase your new diamond in a way that is beautifully unique to you or your loved one.

diamond rings for couples

Learn About Diamonds: Frequently Asked Questions

What information about diamonds do I need to know before coming into the store to buy?

Nothing! We are here to help you figure out the aspects of the stone that are most important to you. It is helpful to have an idea of the cut you’d like to look at, but even so, we have lots of options to explore.

4Cs: The Basics

Here’s a quick guide to the 4Cs. And feel free to ask us questions – we love sharing our knowledge for you to learn about diamonds.

dimaond cutCut
Cut is the most important, because it has the greatest influence on a diamond's visual appeal and sparkle.
diamond colorColor
Color is the second most important of thte 4Cs. The less color a diamond has, the higher its grade will be.
diamond clarityClarity
This should be your least-important concern. Natural diamonds have tiny, microscopic imperfections. But good cut and color more than compensate!
diamond carat weightCarat Weight
A lot of people think carat refers to size, but it doesn't. It is a measure of total weight. Think of carats as a range instead of as a "target".

Why This Matters

For many people, buying an engagement ring is their first experience with buying diamonds. It can feel a bit intimidating. But it doesn’t have to be! With some basic diamond knowledge in your pocket, you’re ready to explore your first diamond purchase, and you’re going to do great.

Besides, the A&J Jewelers team is here to walk you through the experience, just as we have for at least a thousand couples before. We’ll happily answer all your questions, we’ll make sure you’re comfortable each step of the way, and we’ll make it fun for you.

But here’s the most important thing. It’s not about the size, or the price, or the certificate. If the diamonds is beautiful to you, then it’s beautiful. Because your engagement should be about the experience.

What are the 4Cs of diamonds?

The most frequently described aspects of a diamond are the cut, color, clarity and carat weight, or the 4Cs.

Interesting history: In the 1940s, Robert M. Shipley established an institute called the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) to professionalize the jewelry trade and provide formal training to jewelers and sales people. The 4Cs came out of his training as a way for his students to remember the four factors of a faceted diamond. As the terms became part of the American jewelry industry’s vocabulary, they also became the language of retail.

sample diamond ring Cut

The cut is the most important of the 4Cs. A magnificent cut can make a mediocre rough diamond into an outstanding diamond. A poor cut can turn a beautiful stone into a sad shadow of what it was meant to be.

Though commonly thought of as just the final shape of the diamond, the cut also includes the precise geometric angles created to interact with the light, which gives the diamond its signature sparkle. That sparkle and shine comes from a diamond polisher (that’s what a diamond cutter is often called) removing thin layers of diamond material to reveal the magnificent stone in the middle of the dull rough exterior.


Many people think white diamonds are the most rare diamonds of all, but they’re not! The most rare diamonds of all are actually blue and red. In fact, most diamonds live in the middle of the color range, on a spectrum from deepish yellow to lightish gray. But the closer a diamond gets to colorless, the rarer it is, and that is why the color grading system gives the best grades to the most colorless diamonds.

The color scale goes from D to Z. The most expensive diamonds will be in the D, E, and F colors, and the majority of diamonds sold in jewelry are in the D through J range.

Cut also has some influence on the color rating. For instance, a round brilliant (that’s the name of a cut) diamond will hide the yellow color much better than a more elongated diamond. In fact, if you are looking at a round, emerald, or Asscher cut, you can often go as low as a J grade before you start seeing noticeable color.


Diamonds that are grown in the earth have spent a millennia (or more) deep down in the crust. So it’s hardly a surprise that they are filled with little spots and flecks and pockets. In the diamond world, these are referred to as inclusions. In the 4Cs, clarity is all about measuring how many inclusions are present in the stone.

Most inclusions are not visible to the naked eye. But under magnification they can be seen, and they become part of the identity of your diamond, similar to a thumb print. The grading will be based on what is referred to as “eye clean,” or what can be seen with the naked eye.


Carat is the unit used in the jewelry industry to measure the size of a diamond. It’s important to remember that just because a diamond is bigger, doesn’t mean it’s a “better” diamond than a smaller one. The cut, color and clarity also contribute to the value of the stone. A smaller diamond may have a better cut and sparkle just that bit more than a slightly larger stone. The best way to find the perfect diamond for you is to come compare a few stones of similar ratings and actually see which one fits your expectations.

What’s the difference between natural and lab diamonds?

Lab grown diamonds are man-made stones created under the same conditions in which diamonds naturally grow. They have the same chemical and physical properties as natural diamonds and can only be told apart by specific scientific testing. To the human eye, they appear the same in every way to a natural stone!

Though these stones are made in a lab, they aren’t perfect. Because they are created under the same conditions as a natural stone, even lab stones have inclusions or minor imperfections. All of which will make your stone, whether it's man-made or nature-made uniquely yours.

Lab diamonds do tend to be slightly less expensive than natural diamonds and are a great option for someone on a tighter budget.

These are just some of the facts about diamonds so that you don't end up getting a high price deal that turns out not to be worth it. If you need more assistance in choosing your diamonds, please feel free to contact us using the form below.


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