Buying your first diamond can be a daunting experience, given the seemingly endless attributes you feel responsible for knowing. In fact; there are only a handful of really important considerations, which can be separated into two groups: physical attributes, and the place from where you purchase the precious rock.
The physical characteristics of a diamond that matter the most are the weight, which is known as the carat and equals precisely 200 milligrams per, the diamond clarity, the diamond cut and the diamond’s color. Often referred to as the “4C’s”, it is these attributes that are most important to the people that sell diamonds, as well as the ones that buy them. The carat of a diamond is what likely concerns your wallet the most, because the higher the carat, the more actual diamond there is; therefore, it is the biggest determinant of how much you will end up paying. A related, considerable attribute is the diamond’s clarity, which refers to the absence of surface or volume blemishes and jagged breaks that compromise the structural integrity of the rock. Not only will pronounced defects dull the famous brilliant sheen of the diamond, it will seriously decrease its value should you ever wish to sell diamonds back to another retailer.
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The other two physical attributes of the diamond also have an effect on price; moreso, however, on aesthetic appeal. The Cut of the diamond goes hand-in-hand with the brilliant sheen for which the rock is known. Measuring this isn’t a simple metric; all the considerations go to gauging the amount of light that enters the diamond, versus the amount that exits; the closer they match, the better the cut and the more the diamond sparkles and shimmers. The final physical characteristic you should concern yourself with is the diamond’s color. Small impurities from other elements can make the entire diamond take on various hues; many of these are coveted. However, if the diamond is intended to be white, but actually lies on the spectrum between brilliant, pure white and a dingy yellow, then it isn’t exotic; it’s a poor grade. Red or blue diamonds, for example, aren’t poor grades at all, but special stones that are quite valuable.
After you’ve got a handle on the physical attributes for which you should be looking in a diamond, it’s time to decide from where to purchase the stone. This is a simple formula: the more hands the diamond has to pass through before getting to you, the more expensive it will be, because you are paying for the fees of all those handlers. Buying from in-store retail jewelers who sell diamonds averages out to be the most expensive proposition, as your diamond has been handled by the maximum number of people feasible to get it into the store. By this reasoning, buying a diamond from, or selling one to, an online dealer maximizes your profit potential, because they have considerably fewer back-end people to pay. Even better, although harder for the inexperienced seller, is getting as close to direct-selling as possible, in order to recoup the largest fraction of your buying price. This may mean finding the right buyers, or selling from person-to-person. When you consider the benefits of online diamond retailers vs. this latter method, it becomes clear that they have a much larger database of potential buyers and sellers than you can access on your own, and it makes sense that they often give the best values by far for your diamond.