Real Diamonds.

Steven is here to make things easier on you. Starting with the four C’s: Clarity, Color, Cut, Carat Weight and eventually Shape. So sit up. Eyes front. No talking. The (wedding) bell’s about to ring.

A diamond viewed to the naked eye compared to 10x magnification.


Of the Four C's (Clarity, Color, Cut, and Carat Weight), Clarity often has the biggest influence a diamond's value. That's because diamonds are graded according to how clear they are-the clearer, the better. We call that purity. Any identifying characteristics are called inclusions. Fewer inclusions mean a more valuable diamond. Actually, since a truly flawless diamond belongs in the Smithsonian, most people end up choosing what we call "eye flawless" diamonds.

With an eye flawless diamond, any identifying characteristics are invisible to the naked eye. You get a beautiful diamond while he saves enough for the wedding and honeymoon. Or maybe enough to buy an even bigger diamond. The way we see it, everybody wins.

A diamond sketch with clarity F, having no inclusions.


A rare breed. Belongs in The Smithsonian.

A diamond sketch illustrating IF diamond inclusions.

Internally Flawless

Belongs in an exhibit.

A diamond sketch illustrating VVS1 diamond inclusions.

Very, Very Slight 1

An inclusion only Superman can see.

A diamond sketch illustrating VVS2 diamond inclusions.

Very, Very Slight 2

A second tier superhero, like the Green Hornet, could spot this tiny, tiny inclusion.

A diamond sketch illustrating VS1 diamond inclusions.

Very Slight 1

Few mortals—probably not you, though. And definitely not your bride-to-be—could see this inclusion, even with the help of 10-power microscope.

A diamond sketch illustrating VS2 diamond inclusions.

Very Slight 2

Same as above. The only difference between a VS1 and VS2 are the quantity and placement of the inclusions.

A diamond sketch illustrating SI1 diamond inclusions.

Slightly Included 1

A regular Joe could find this inclusion using a jeweler’s loupe or a microscope magnified 10x.

A diamond sketch illustrating SI2 diamond inclusions.

Slightly Included 2

Here’s where you come in. Squint into a microscope (or have really good eyesight) and you could spot an identifying characteristic.

A diamond sketch illustrating I1 diamond inclusions.

Included 1

Even without a microscope, assuming 20/20 vision, you can sometimes see an identifying characteristic. This is the most popular clarity on the scale.

A diamond sketch illustrating I2 diamond inclusions.

Included 2

Take off the sunglasses and you’ll always see this inclusion.

A diamond sketch illustrating I3 clarity inclusions.

Included 3

Your half-blind octogenarian aunt could spot this inclusion from across the room.

Three diamonds all showing the difference in color from least on the left to most on the right.


Next subject: Color. This is the kind of class where a D or a F is good.

Diamonds are graded according to their color, which range from very clear "colorless" to shades of yellow, brown or gray. Here's the color scale:



These are colorless diamonds, without even a trace of yellow. The human eye can’t detect a bit of difference between D, E, and F. Buy her a colorless diamond, and you’ll be her prince forever. On a scale from 1-10, with 10 being the perfect diamond, these diamonds are 10.

Nearly Colorless

Nearly colorless, this is the most popular range of color grades. This is a beautiful, sparkly white diamond that'll still leave money left over for the wedding you've always wanted.

Hint of Yellow

A barely-there hint of yellow. Like a cheap Chablis. Only lighter.

Very Light Yellow

These diamonds have a very light yellow hue to them. Maybe it's the lights. Most likely not.


These are pretty yellow. Well, not pretty yellow. Just... pretty yellow.

This diagram shows how depth, angle, and height are looked at from a way that a diamond is cut.

Cut is the most visible because it's what makes each diamond sparkle, and influences your diamond's shape.

Cut refers to a diamond's proportions, finish, symmetry and polish. It's how a diamond- in-the-rough becomes the beautiful gemstone you can't wait to show your friends. The cut is directly responsible for just how good your diamond is going to look-and how good you're going to look wearing it.

A diamond with precise cuts and shape will sparkle and shine because its many facets catch the light perfectly. Like little points of light dancing on your finger. Ahhhh.

As an example, look at this round brilliant cut with 58 facets. Since the diamond's beauty directly reflects the quality of the cut, the precision with which the facets are arranged is of prime importance. They determine the amount of light reflected to the eye, which we call brilliance. And if your man is smart, he's over on his side taking notes.

A lady with red nail polish is holding up an engagement ring with a decent sized stone.
Carat Weight

A diamond is measured according to its carat weight. And yes, ladies, we know: size does matter. It matters here in diamond selection, too. Anything over one is well above average. And two is huge.

But let's weigh it all against the context of the three other C's. A one carat diamond with no visible inclusions, with shiny white color and flawlessly cut is going to look just as amazing as any two-carat rock. The choice is yours-make it something you'll love for the rest of your life.

Diamond sizes.

The above illustration is not to scale. Diamonds sizes are shown for comparison purposes only.

Diamond Shape

Isn’t this class over yet? Almost. Now that you’ve been schooled on the 4 Cs, let’s cover shapes.

Round Brilliant Diamonds

This shape has set the standard for all other diamond shapes, and accounts for more than 75% of diamonds sold today. Its 58-facet cut, divided among its crown (top), girdle (widest part) and pavilion (base), is calibrated through a precise formula to achieve maximum brilliance.

Shop Now

Cushion Diamonds

This square or rectangular shaped diamond is a mixed cut diamond, shaped like a pillow, hence the name. This diamond combines the brilliance of a brilliant cut diamond with the beauty and elegance of an emerald cut.

Shop Now

Princess Cut Diamonds

This square or rectangular cut has many sparkling facets. It’s a relatively new cut and often finds its way into solitaire engagement rings. Flattering to a hand with long fingers, it is often embellished with triangular stones at its sides.

Shop Now

Oval Diamonds

An even, perfectly symmetrical design popular among women with small hands or short fingers. Its elongated shape gives a flattering illusion of length to the hand.

Shop Now

Radiant Diamonds

This square or rectangular cut combines the elegance of the emerald shape diamond with the brilliance of the round, and its 70 facets maximize the effect of its color refraction.

Asscher Diamonds

This square shaped diamond is cut identical to an emerald cut, using the elegance of the stepped cut diamond, with a rectangular cut pavilion. Like the Emerald Cut, it shows everything. Pick carefully.

Emerald Cut Diamonds

A rectangular shape with cut corners, known as a step cut because its concentric broad, flat planes resemble stair steps. Since inclusions and inferior color are more pronounced in this particular cut, you should select a stone of superior clarity and color.

Shop Now

Marquise Diamonds

An elongated shape with pointed ends. This cut is enhanced by smaller diamonds that surround the main stone.

Shop Now

Pear Shaped Diamonds

A hybrid cut, combining the best of the oval and the marquise, it is shaped most like a sparkling teardrop.

Shop Now

Heart Shaped Diamonds

This ultimate symbol of romance is essentially a pear-shaped diamond with a cleft at the top. It's a heart...she’ll love it!

Shop Now

Trilliant Diamonds

This newer cut is definitely for the adventurous. It may be a traditional triangular shape with pointed corners or a more rounded triangular shape with 25 facets on the crown, 19 facets on the pavilion, and a polished girdle.


This diamond is rectangular, cut with step-like facets. Baguettes come in the straight and tapered shapes most often. This diamond is hardly the center of attention, leaving it to make a great accent on the side of another beautiful shaped diamond.

Steven’s Notes

Does size matter?

Are we still talking about diamonds here? Ahem. In our experience, a 1-carat diamond with perfectly cut facets can look just as good as a bigger diamond that just sits there. Focus more on the shape and cut than the size, and you’ll have a spectacular ring to show your besties.

Colorless or Nearly Colorless?


is the most popular range, is nearly colorless and looks just as sparkly. He saves some money, and you get a beautiful diamond..

Buy what your girl will love. Then let the Steven Singer hate begin.

Steve singers portrait with signature.
Steven Singer
Class Dismissed

So. There you have it. Everything you need to know about Diamonds. Explore Steven’s Collections armed with your newfound knowledge.