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The 4 C's: Cut

When you are purchasing jewelry, do you look for the most beautiful or a bad looking piece? This blog post is the second in a four-part series where I explain a little bit deeper about the 4 C’s because I want you to feel confident when buying jewelry! The 4 C’s are a mnemonic device used to characterize a faceted diamond – carat, cut, color, and clarity! (you can find the first blog about Carat here: ) Comfortability with these characterizations are really important when choosing a diamond because you want a beautiful one to grace her finger! While carat may the C most people know about, the C that you should really pay attention to is Cut!

Oftentimes, people confuse the outside shape of a diamond with the Cut. The outside shape of a diamond is what we refer to as round, oval, cushion, pear, marquise, etc. But, Cut refers to the arrangement and balance of facets in a diamond.

The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) has five Cut grades for a round brilliant diamond: Excellent (EX); Very Good (VG); Good (G); Fair (F); Poor (P). The reason that Cut is so important is because it’s the reason a diamond will sparkle beautifully or be dull, it’s the fuel for the scintillation! We often assume that all diamonds shine, but it is not the case. As you can see with the range of cut grades, there is a variance of cut which translates to a variance of liveliness to dim!

When light enters a diamond, it bounces around internally and comes back out of the diamond. In a well-cut diamond, the light will come back out of the top to hit your eye so that you see the sparkle. In a poor cut diamond, the light will come out the sides leaving you to see a diamond that is flat or dull. A round brilliant diamond has 58 facets, sometimes referred to as planes and angles. It’s the arrangement and balance of those facets that increases or decreases the ability light has to bounce around and come back out of the top of the diamond!

Diamond cutting is both a science and an art! I had the opportunity to watch Jen Pilon, the first female diamond cutter in Canada, facet a diamond. She talked about the math formulas she has to use every time she is at the diamond cutting wheel! (link to Jen: While you can take a 20 week course to learn how to cut a diamond, it takes years to develop the skill to become a professional. In fact, the Cut of a diamond is the only quality factor controlled by a human being, the rest come from nature!

Who wants to wear a diamond that has no life to it? When you buy an engagement ring or you are upgrading for an anniversary, you want to have a diamond that sparkles across the room no matter what the carat weight is! Finding you a diamond that is beautiful and full of life without breaking the budget is something I have been doing for 23 years!

I understand that there is a lot about buying a diamond that can be overwhelming. Book your private appointment with me, and I will help you give her a ring that you will be proud of!

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