How To Choose A Diamond: Beyond The 4 Cs

Buying a diamond engagement ring online or in-person is a tricky task unless you’re a jeweller. Diamond jewellery is a major investment and also carries a deep sentimental value. Obviously, you are going to choose a diamond that catches your eye and takes your breath away- the same reaction you surely hope to get from your partner when they receive it. There is more to choosing a diamond than just the initial wow factor, however.

Ramzi & Co. isn’t just here to make a sale. We want to guide you through the process of buying a diamond. The more you understand about the qualities of a diamond that make it valuable and desirable, the more likely you are to pick a stone that is great value for your money and a big hit with your one true love.

What is A Diamond

A girl’s best friend, of course!

More specifically, though, a diamond is a natural precious gemstone that forms from carbon. After the proper pressure and time are applied by nature, the carbon transforms in structure. The result is a beautiful, clear, and generally colourless crystal.

The most valuable diamonds embody this description as closely as possible. They are transparent, brilliant, clear (for the most part, more on this later), and as big as you can get. While it’s certainly true that a small diamond can be beautiful, larger gems make a big statement.

Why Diamond Rings for Engagements

The tradition of engagement rings in general is thought to date back to a Roman custom that isn’t exactly romantic by modern sentiments. Roman women wore rings with small keys attached, which stood as a symbol of their husband’s ownership.

Today, the ring is a symbol of the unbreakable connection between two lovers who choose to join their lives together. It stands for fidelity and commitment.

The reason most people buy diamond rings for engagements is thanks to one infamous trendsetter: Archduke Maximillian of Austria. In 1477, the Archduke commissioned the first diamond engagement ring in recorded history. The aristocracy of the day liked to keep up with the Joneses, so they all followed suit. In Victorian times, however, the diamond was often paired with other, coloured stones and set or ornate designs similar to filigree engagement rings.

Diamonds are also a smart choice for engagement rings because they are a very hard stone that can stand up to daily wear.

But, that’s history. What about choosing a diamond today. At least you’ve got the internet to help!

The 4Cs of A Diamond

Diamond colour, clarity, cut and carat weight is collectively termed the “4Cs” – the factors that, when combined, define a diamond’s quality and ultimately determine its value. GIA created the first, and now globally accepted standard for describing diamonds: Colour, Clarity, Cut, and Carat Weight. Today, the 4Cs of Diamond Quality is the universal method for assessing the quality of any diamond, anywhere in the world.

This system is handy to get the hang of it if you are looking for a quick engagement ring guide or cheatsheet.

First, we’ll take a closer look at the 4Cs of diamonds: cut, colour, clarity, and carat.


A diamond’s cut shows off its best feature: light refraction. Bling, sparkle, luster- you know, that famous diamond flash. A well-cut diamond will shine brilliantly. This is why cut is considered the most important quality in the 4Cs rating system.

Understand that when choosing your diamond, a highly rated stone in all of the other criteria in the 4Cs may appear dull if it has a poor cut. We cannot stress how important this particular category of diamond pizazz cut is.

Ramzi & Co. only recommends diamonds with a cut rating of Good and higher.


A diamond’s colour grade measures the pigment or tint of the stone with clear being the most desirable. The clearest, most desirable diamonds earn a grade of D while the least desirable earn a grade of Z.

There is one exception when it comes to colour in the 4Cs. Highly pigmented diamonds have become desirable. Diamonds that are vividly coloured are valuable for this reason.


The next qualifier in the 4Cs is clarity. Clarity is the third most important criteria because flaws of this type can’t be seen by the naked eye.

An inclusion or blemish refers to an imperfection in the stone, and the most valuable diamonds are free of any inclusions.

Ramzi & Co. only recommends diamonds with an SI2 clarity rating or higher.

The scale for clarity, in order of least to best, is:

  • I3-I2
  • I1
  • SI2
  • SI1
  • VS2
  • VS1
  • VVS2
  • VVS1
  • IF; and
  • FL

Take our advice, if you’re shopping on a budget, spend the funds you have wisely on a better cut before you splurge for clarity.


A carat is simply a weight measurement for gemstones. Most people think the higher the carat number, the larger the stone is, however, this isn’t always true. The cut of the diamond makes a big difference in how large the stone appears.

For this reason, it’s often a good idea to choose a diamond slightly below your ideal carat weight. For instance, purchase a 1.9 carat stone instead of a 2.0. The savings can be significant.

Diamond Certification

A diamond certificate, also known as a diamond grading report, as they are known in the diamond industry, is often called the fifth C, in addition to the well-known 4Cs of diamond stones: colour, clarity, cut, and carat.

Every diamond purchase from Ramzi & Co. comes complete with an Independent Lab Certificate from GIA, IGI, or HRD for authentication.

Diamond Shapes

Another point to consider while diamond shopping is the many shapes of diamonds. Consider both the look of the stone itself and how it will complement a setting.

The shape is the form of a diamond and generally described from an aerial view.

10 Most Desirable Diamond Shapes include:

  • Round
  • Princess
  • Oval
  • Cushion
  • Pear
  • Emerald
  • Marquise
  • Asscher
  • Radiant
  • Heart

The shape of your diamond can show off its assets in a way that lets you get more for less, which is why it’s an important consideration in addition to the 4Cs.

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