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Diamonds 101

First thing's first: No one needs a diamond

Let's face it.  As pretty and shiny as diamonds are, your first step toward purchasing a diamond engagement ring is to accept and realize that you are buying a luxury.  In many countries throughout the world, millions of couples get engaged each year with a plain engagement band.  Even in the U.S., many couples choose different stones or no stones at all to symbolize their engagement.  Before you purchase a diamond, ask yourself if you really want a diamond... you certainly don't need it to get engaged.

Diamonds are expensive because they are rare

FALSE!  There are enough diamonds in the world to fill a cupful for every man, woman, and child in the planet.  The reason they are so expensive is because strict controls are placed on the quantity of diamonds produced for sale worldwide.

Ok, then why would I buy a diamond?

A diamond is truly a wonderful symbol of commitment and love; with the right care, a diamond ring will last a lifetime.

Emotions aside, once you've decided to take the plunge and make a diamond purchase, it should be approached methodically and rationally.  Allow yourself 1 to 3 months to do the research, evaluate all the options, and then finally to make the purchase.  On average, an engagement diamond ring is the third most expensive item that a person will buy in their lifetime (other than a home and a car).  You should treat the purchase very seriously -- this is where Diamond Review can help you.

The Tutorial

The purpose of our tutorial is twofold:

  1. To give you a quick but solid education on the basics of diamonds, and
  2. to guide you through the selection and purchasing process.

You should plan on spending about 30 minutes on the tutorial. If you're planning to purchase a diamond, this will be time well spent.

If you're in a hurry or don't feel like reading tutorials, we recommend using FindMyJeweler to find a pre-screened local jeweler near you that will take the time to educate you, and will also provide you with quality and service at a reasonable price. Click here to try out FindMyJeweler!

The "4 Cs"

The quality of a diamond is determined by four factors commonly known as the "4 Cs" -- Carat weight, Clarity, Color, and Cut.  The first 3 Cs are quite straightforward and will be explained here. However, beware of "cut"!! The difference between a "great" cut, a "good" cut, and a "bad" cut can be subtle to the untrained eye, but will make a huge difference in terms of the value and beauty of the stone.  An unscrupulous jeweler will sell you a heavy stone with superb clarity and color for an unbelievably low price and still make a substantial profit, if the 4th "C" -- the cut -- is inferior!

The tutorial will go through each factor in thorough detail -- especially "cut."  If at a later time you need a quick reference on any of these topics, use the tabs in any of the Tutorial pages to jump directly to the information you need.

For now, click on "next page" to begin learning about the first "C" -- Carat Weight!