ColorKey Points Color refers to a diamonds lack of color, grading the whiteness of a diamond. A color grade of D is the highest possible, while Z is the lowest. Blue Nile only sells diamonds with a color grade of J or higher.Color manifests itself in a diamond as a pale yellow. This is why a diamonds color grade is based onits lack of color. The less color a diamond has, the higher its color grade. After cut, color is generallyconsidered the second most important characteristic when selecting a diamond. This is because thehuman eye tends to detect a diamonds sparkle (light performance) first, and color second.At Blue Nile, youll find only the finest diamonds with color graded D-J. Diamonds graded J or betterare colorless or near-colorless, with color that is typically undetectable to the unaided eye. Z-N Noticeable color. Not carried by Blue Nile. M-K Noticeable color. Not carried by Blue Nile. J-I Near-colorless. An exceptional value with slightly detectable warmth or tone. H-G Near-colorless. Color difficult to detect unless compared side-by-side against diamonds of better grades. An excellent value. F-E Colorless. Minute traces of color can be detected by an expert gemologist. A rare diamond. D Absolutely colorless. The highest color grade. Extremely rare.What Color is Right for Me? For the purist, look for a colorless diamond with a grade of D-F for a diamond with no discernible color. For an excellent value in a diamond with little or no noticeable color to the unaided eye, look for a near-colorless grade of G-I
CaratKey Points Carat is specifically a measure of a diamonds weight, and by itself may not accurately reflect a diamonds size. We tend to evaluate diamond size by viewing it from the top because that is how diamonds are presented to us when set into a ring. To understand diamond size, carat weight should be considered in conjunction with two other criteria: o – Distance in millimeters across the top of the diamond. o – Diamonds cut grade.As the name suggests, carat weight specifically refers to a diamonds weight. However, much asa persons weight does not necessarily correlate with height, carat weight, by itself, may notaccurately reflect a diamonds size. To gain a precise understanding of diamond size, Blue Nilerecommends considering carat weight with two other characteristics: 1) the distance across thetop of the diamond measured in millimeters, and 2) the diamonds cut grade.It is important to measure the distance across the top of the diamond as this is how we view astone when set into a ring.A diamonds cut grade should also be considered because, as we noted in the cut gradesection, when a diamond is cut with the proper proportions, the maximum amount of light (orsparkle) is returned out of the top of the diamond. Thus, when a diamond is well cut, the lightreflected out of the top makes it appear larger. In addition, much of the weight of a poorly cutdiamond, for example, may be "hidden" in the base of the diamond, making the diamond appearsmaller than its carat weight would imply.It is therefore possible to have a diamond of a lower carat weight, but higher cut grade, thatappears larger than a diamond with a larger carat weight, but poor cut.Once youve selected your cut, color, and clarity grade, its easy to determine the carat weight ofdiamond that will fit within your budget.Much as there are 100 pennies in a dollar, a one-carat diamond is comprised of 100 points.Hence, 50 points is equal to 1/2-carat, and so on.This chart illustrates how diamonds of different carat weights look when set in a ring. Note that a2-carat diamond does not appear to be twice the size of a 1-carat diamond when viewed fromthe top.
What Carat Weight Is Right For Me?To choose the best carat weight of diamond, consider the size of her finger, the size of your setting, andyour budget. If a large carat weight is important to you, yet youre working within a strict budget, consider a diamond with a good cut, SI1-SI2 clarity, and an I or J color grade. Diamond prices jump at the full- and half-carat weights. Diamonds just below these weights cost significantly less, and, because carat weight is distributed across the entirety of the diamond, small size differences are almost impossible to detect. Keep in mind that the smaller the finger, the larger the diamond will appear. A 1.5-carat diamond solitaire looks much larger on a size 4 finger than a size 8. Not all settings will fit all diamond carats or shapes. If you have already selected a setting, check the diamond specifications of your ring or ask your Blue Nile Diamond and Jewelry Consultant (888-565-7641) for help. If you need a special jewelry piece created, Blue Nile can accommodate almost any request.
ClarityKey Points Clarity is a measure of the number and size of the tiny imperfections that occur in almost all diamonds. Many of these imperfections are microscopic, and do not affect a diamonds beauty in any discernible way.Much is made of a diamonds clarity, but of the Four Cs, it is the easiest to understand, and,according to many experts, generally has the least impact on a diamonds appearance. Claritysimply refers to the tiny, natural imperfections that occur in all but the finest diamonds.Gemologists refer to these imperfections by a variety of technical names, including blemishesand inclusions, among others. Diamonds with the least and smallest imperfections receive thehighest clarity grades. Because these imperfections tend to be microscopic, they do notgenerally affect a diamonds beauty in any discernible way. Flawless, Internally Flawless: No internal or external imperfections. Internally FL, IF Flawless: No internal imperfections. Very rare. Very, Very Slightly Included: Very difficult to see imperfections under 10x VVS1, magnification. An excellent quality diamond. VVS2 Very Slightly Included: Imperfections are not typically visible to the unaided VS1, eye. Less expensive than the VVS1 or VVS2 grades. VS2 Slightly Included: Imperfections are visible under 10x magnification, and may SI1, be visible with the unaided eye. A good diamond value. SI2 Included: Blue Nile does not carry diamonds of I-grade clarity. I1, I2, I3
What Clarity Grade Is Right For Me? Select an "eye-clean" diamond - one that has no imperfections visible to the unaided eye. An excellent value, diamonds of this clarity are much less expensive than flawless (FL) or internally flawless (IF) diamonds, which are extremely rare and command higher prices. Frequently, imperfections in diamonds graded slightly included (SI) are not visible to the unaided eye, making them an excellent value. If youre considering a diamond with an SI clarity grade, call to speak to a diamond and jewelry consultant who will review the diamond to ensure the imperfections are not visible to the unaided eye.
CutKey Points Cut is a diamonds most important characteristic. It has the greatest overall influence on a diamonds beauty. It determines what we generally think of as sparkle.Blue Nile gemologists recommend selecting the highest cut grade within your budget. The reason issimple: of the Four Cs, no other characteristic has a greater influence on a diamonds appearance.A diamonds cut grade is an objective measure of a diamonds light performance, or, what wegenerally think of as sparkle. When a diamond is cut with the proper proportions, light is returned outof the top of the diamond (which gemologists refer to as the table). If it is cut too shallow, light leaksout of the bottom; too deep and it escapes out of the side.Cut Grades Blue Nile Signature Ideal cut: Our most brilliant cut, representing roughly the top 1% of diamond quality based on cut. The highest grades of polish and symmetry allow it to reflect even more light than the standard ideal cut. Ideal cut: Represents roughly the top 3% of diamond quality based on cut. Reflects nearly all light that enters the diamond. An exquisite and rare cut. Very good cut: Represents roughly the top 15% of diamond quality based on cut. Reflects nearly as much light as the ideal cut, but for a lower price. Good cut: Represents roughly the top 25% of diamond quality based on cut. Reflects most light that enters. Much less expensive than a very good cut. Fair cut: Represents roughly the top 35% of diamond quality based on cut. Still a quality diamond, but a fair cut will not be as brilliant as a good cut. Poor cut: Diamonds that are generally so deep and narrow or shallow and wide that they lose most of the light out the sides and bottom. Blue Nile does not carry diamonds with cut grades of poor.What Cut Grade Is Right For Me?
For the best possible cut, look to the Blue Nile Signature Collection. Custom made exclusively forBlue Nile, each Signature Collection diamond is hand-selected and cut to the most exactingstandards, guaranteeing one of the finest cuts available in the world.Diamonds with a cut grade of good or very good represent an excellent combination of beautyand value.
ShapeRoundThe round brilliant cut diamond is by far the most popular and most researched diamond shapeavailable today. For almost 100 years, diamond cutters have been using advanced theories oflight behavior and precise mathematical calculations to optimize the fire and brilliance in a rounddiamond. In addition to being the most popular and researched shape, a round diamond willtypically give you more flexibility in terms of balancing cut, color, and clarity grades while stillgetting the fire and brilliance you want.To maximize the brilliance of a traditional round diamond, select one in the two highest cutgrades, ideal or very good, and choose ideal, excellent, or very good polish and symmetrygrades.PrincessThis is our most popular non-round diamond. Its beautiful brilliance and unique cut makes it afavorite for engagement rings. The princess has pointed corners and is traditionally square inshape. When choosing a color grade, consider that while the price of a J-color non-rounddiamond is exceptional, color may be slightly visible in its corners. Also, princess-cut diamondscan vary greatly in how square or rectangular they are. To find the dimension of princess youwant, look for the length-to-width ratio in our interactive diamond search and on each diamondsdetail page. This will determine what the diamond will look like when viewing it from above. Hereare length-to-width ratios for princess-cut diamond shapes that are pleasing to the eye.For a princess diamond shape that is square, look for length-to-width ratios between 1 and 1.05.If you prefer more of a rectangular shape, look for length-to-width ratios greater than 1.10.EmeraldWhat makes this shape different is its pavilion, which is cut with rectangular facets to create aunique optical appearance. Due to its larger, open table, this shape highlights the clarity of adiamond. If you choose an emerald-cut with a lower clarity grade, such as SI, be sure to reviewthe clarity plot on the diamond certificate. Also, emerald-cut diamonds can vary greatly in howrectangular they are. If youd prefer an emerald cut with a squared outline, look for an Asscher-cut diamond. To find the shape of emerald you want, look for the length-to-width ratio in ourinteractive diamond search and on each diamonds detail page. The length-to-width ratio willdetermine the diamonds outline, or what it will look like when viewed from the top.For the classic emerald-cut shape, look for a length-to-width ratio between 1.30 and 1.40.
AsscherThis beautifully unique shape is nearly identical to the emerald-cut, except that it is square.Also, this shape has a pavilion that is cut with rectangular facets in the same style as theemerald-cut. If you choose SI-clarity be sure to view the clarity plot on the diamond certificate,because this shape highlights the clarity of the diamond. When choosing a color grade, considerthat while the price of a J-color non-round diamond is exceptional, color may be slightly visiblein its corners.All Asscher-cut diamonds from Blue Nile will appear square, because each one is guaranteed tohave a length-to-width ratiobetween 1.00 and 1.05.MarquiseThe shape of a marquise diamond can maximize carat weight, giving you a much larger-lookingdiamond. This brilliant-cut diamond looks beautiful set with round or pear-shaped side stones,and the length of the marquise makes fingers appear long and slender. To find the dimension ofmarquise you want, look for thelength-to-width ratio in our interactive diamond search and oneach diamonds detail page. The length-to-width ratio will determine the diamonds outline, orwhat it will look like when viewed from the top.For the most traditional marquise-cut diamonds, look for length-to-width ratios between 1.75 and2.25.OvalAn oval diamond has beautiful brilliance thats similar to a round diamond. Oval diamonds arealso very popular as their length can accentuate long, slender fingers. To find the dimension ofoval you want, look for the length-to-width ratio in our interactive diamond search and on eachdiamonds detail page. The length-to-width ratio will determine the diamonds outline, or what itwill look like when viewed from the top.For the most traditional oval diamonds, look for length-to-width ratios between 1.33 and 1.66.RadiantTrimmed corners are the signature of this diamond, and they help make the radiant-cut apopular and versatile choice for jewelry. A radiant-cut looks equally beautiful set with eitherbaguette or round side-diamonds. Radiant-cut diamonds can vary in their degree ofrectangularity. To find the dimension of radiant you want, look for the length-to-width ratio in ourinteractive diamond search and on each diamonds detail page. The length-to-width ratio willdetermine the diamonds outline, or what it will look like when viewed from the top.For a radiant diamond shape that is square, look for length-to-width ratios between 1 and 1.05.If you prefer more of a rectangular shape, look for length-to-width ratios greater than 1.10.PearThis brilliant-cut diamond is also called a teardrop for its single point and rounded end. Theunique look of the pear shape helps make it a popular choice for a variety of diamond jewelry. Ifyou choose an elongated pear shape, the length of the diamond creates a subtle slimmingeffect on the fingers.
To understand what the diamond will look like when viewing it from above, look for thelength-to-width ratio on each diamonds detail page. For the most traditional pear-shaped diamond, lookfor a length-to-width ratio between 1.45 and 1.75.HeartThe heart is the ultimate symbol of love. The unique look of the heart-shaped diamond helpsmake it a distinctive choice for a variety of diamond jewelry. When choosing a color grade,consider that while the price of a J-color heart shaped diamond is exceptional, color may beslightly visible in its corners. To find the dimension of heart-shape you want, look for the length-to-width ratio in our interactive diamond search and on each diamonds detail page. The length-to-width ratio will determine the diamonds outline, or what it will look like when viewed from thetop.CushionThis unique shape has been popular for more than a century. Cushion-cut diamonds (alsoknown as "pillow-cut" diamonds) have rounded corners and larger facets to increase theirbrilliance. These larger facets highlight the diamonds clarity, so if you choose an SI claritygrade, be sure to review the clarity plot on the diamond certificate. Cushion-cut diamonds areavailable in shapes ranging from square to rectangular. To find the dimension of cushion youwant, look for the length-to-width ratio in our interactive diamond search and on each diamondsdetail page. The length-to-width ratio will determine the diamonds outline, or what it will look likewhen viewed from the top.For a cushion-cut diamond that is square, look for length-to-width ratios between 1 and 1.05. Ifyou prefer more of a rectangular shape, look for length-to-width