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4Cs of Lab Grown Diamonds

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When it comes to diamonds, there are four essential factors that determine their quality and value. Known as the 4Cs—carat, colour, clarity, and cut—these characteristics play a significant role in evaluating both natural and lab-grown diamonds.

In this guide, we will dive into each of the 4Cs and explore how they apply specifically to lab-grown diamonds, shedding light on their unique qualities and advantages.

Whether you're considering a lab-grown diamond for its ethical and sustainable appeal or simply exploring your options, understanding the 4Cs will empower you to make an informed decision for any diamond purchase.

Carat

A Carat is a unit used to measure the weight of a diamond, with one carat equalling 200 milligrams, or 0.20 grams. It is important to note that a diamond's carat is not indicative of a its quality or beauty, but rather its weight, which is also correlated to its size.

Lab-grown diamonds are available in a wide range of carat weights, offering flexibility and affordability for those seeking a larger stone.

Moreover, due to the cost-effectiveness of lab-grown diamonds compared to natural ones, you can obtain a higher carat weight for the same price.

Colour

Diamond colour refers to the absence or presence of colour within a given stone. Diamonds are graded on a scale from D (colourless) to Z (brown or light yellow). The absence of colour is highly valued, as it allows diamonds to reflect more light and display greater brilliance. Generally speaking, colourless diamonds are worth more than their coloured counterparts given their rarity and chemical purity.

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Fig 1. This illustration showcases the relative colour profiles of diamonds with different colour grades. 

Note, there are also diamonds that exist with vibrant hues that fall outside the range of the standard scale. These diamonds, known as “fancy coloured diamonds”, have exotic hues and are rare to find in nature. Given their unique look and rarity, fancy coloured diamonds like these are typically more expensive than their coloured counterparts.

With regards to lab-grown diamonds, since they are made in controlled environments, they offer exceptional colour control, allowing for a wide spectrum of possibilities. From near-colourless diamonds that give a timeless look, to vivid hues that make a bold statement, lab-grown diamonds provide an extensive array of choices to suit individual tastes.

Clarity

Clarity measures the presence of imperfections within a diamond - which are referred to as inclusions and blemishes.

Diamonds are rated on a scale from Flawless to Included. Flawless refers to no imperfections being visible under a magnification of 10x, and Included refers to being able to see imperfections on the diamond with the naked eye.

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Fig 2. Three round cut diamonds with different clarity grades. 

Since lab grown diamonds are created in controlled environments, they can be created to have superior clarity than their mined counterparts, with few to no inclusions present - at a fraction of the price.

Cut

Arguably the most important factor that influences a diamond’s beauty, Cut refers to how well a diamond has been shaped to optimize its light reflection.

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Fig 3. A well cut diamond optimizes the brilliance, fire, and scintillation of a diamond. 

With well cut proportions and symmetry, a properly cut diamond optimises its overall brilliance, fire and scintillation, resulting in an eye-catching shine

  • Brilliance: Refers to the overall intensity of white light reflected by a diamond.
  • Fire: Refers to the spectral range of light reflected by a diamond
  • Scintillation: Refers to the patterns of light given off by a diamond when it reflects light while being rotated.

A diamond’s cut is oftentimes the most difficult C to grade on a diamond. Graded from excellent to poor, a careful analysis of the stone’s characteristics, such as its symmetry, proportions and surface smoothness is needed to determine how well the given stone reflects light and its optical properties.

In the Market for a Lab Grown Diamond? We’re here to help.

As you explore the options of lab grown diamonds, understanding the 4Cs is crucial in guiding you to selecting the perfect stone that matches your budget and personal preferences. With lab grown diamonds being virtually chemically identical to mined ones, these stones offer you a way to get more value for your money than with their mined counterparts.

As the leading experts in Lab Grown Diamonds in Calgary, the team at VENA NOVA is dedicated to assisting you in selecting the perfect stone. We warmly invite you to visit our showroom downtown, where we can help guide you through the world of Lab Grown Diamonds.