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Picking the Perfect Diamond: The Importance of the 4 C's

August 25, 2015

The most important thing to remember when picking the perfect diamond, is that perfect means different things to different people.  In my career selling diamonds, I have yet to sell a colorless, flawless, triple excellent cut diamond (the closest thing to what could objectively be called "perfect").  That said, I have helped hundreds of people find the perfect diamond for them. 

There are countless sites on the internet where you can learn about the 4 C's of diamonds.  Today, I'm not going to cover what the 4 C's are, but instead why you should care about them. 

When my father was getting engaged back in the mid-70's, my grandfather showed him three different diamonds.  There was no discussion of color, or clarity, or any of the 4 C's for that matter.  My grandfather told my father to pick the diamond he thought was the most beautiful, end of discussion.  He knew then, and we still believe today, that your own two eyes are the best way to select the perfect diamond.  

Now, I would never expect you to take this same approach with me today.  And that is why the 4 C’s exist.  They’re a simple scale we can use to communicate about diamonds using common terminology.  I can speak with a diamond cutter in Israel, or a wholesaler in Belgium, or you right across the case from me, and we can all be on the same page. 

You may think the 4 C’s have been around forever, but the GIA didn't even create the 4 C's as we know them today until the mid-1950's.  Even then, discussing the grades with customers wasn't commonplace until some 30 years later.  But today, we know that you want to know what you're buying and feel confident that you're getting true value for your money.  

The 4 C's on their own aren't the best way to pick the perfect diamond, they’ll never be better than your eye, but they are the best way to make sure you don't get ripped off.  Very small differences in diamond qualities, often times impossible to see with the naked eye, can affect the price of a diamond by thousands of dollars.  Thatis why you should care about the 4 C’s.  You may not be able to see the difference between an SI1 and a VVS1 with the naked eye, but you’ll sure see a difference in the price.  Without the 4 C’s, attempting to communicate that difference is quality would be a major challenge. 

So when picking the perfect diamond, let the 4 C’s be one extra piece of evidence in your journey.  Use them to compare the quality and price of one diamond versus another.  But most importantly, understand that they are used to communicate rarity more than anything else.  To determine beauty, no grading scale will ever beat your eyes.

Looking to learn more?  Send me an email and setup a time to come by our Swansea, MA store and meet.

We're honored that Mullen Bros. Jewelers ranks #1 in overall customer ratings among all jewelry stores in Southeastern Massachusetts and we will continue to take care of our neighbors and friends, one jewel at a time! 


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