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How to save money shopping for a Diamond

May 26, 2020

Battle of the 4C’s.

What really matters, and why?

You are a smart and savvy consumer, so there is a good chance, at this point in your research, you have a good idea of what the four C’s are, and a rough understanding of all that glitters.

I mean, D = expensive, I3 Clarity = her not so happy, right?
Carat weight is the one time that seeing a heavier weight on the scale will make a woman happy!
The Cut Grading, is a pretty reliable “Uglometer”.
That’s a fair breakdown, right? But with thousands of diamonds available, what does this mean for you specifically, and can you use the C’s to your advantage?

In a word, yes!

A couple can become incredibly infatuated by all these details, but the reality is many can not discern color and clarity by eye – and six months after purchasing a stone, very few can accurately remember or recognize the color or clarity that they chose.

However, what you will always undeniably see, is the size and the sparkle of your stone.

So what counts, and what can you leverage?

When it comes to color, you only really start seeing color (also referred to as warmth in the stone) from I onwards, but anything above an L – that is an excellent cut – can still be a breathtakingly beautiful stone. There is more room to play with color than you might think, as remember, everybody perceives color differently. This is why it is so important to be given the chance to see stones in person, and assess them side by side, to make unbiased decisions and discover what matters most to YOU.

Even within each color grade, there is a spectrum, a high J, for example, can face up really white and look far more like an I, and vice versa, a low, poorly cut I could look far more like a J.

When it comes to clarity, the GIA grades this with a 10X power loupe! In anything that we show, SI1 and above, the inclusions are going to be microscopic, and therefore invisible to the naked eye. (with the exception of Asschers and Emerald cuts).

Be warned, this won’t be the case with online diamonds. See our article about shopping for an online diamond to save you from making an expensive mistake!

So, if we can speak candidly, to pay for the very highest clarity might be a wasteful use of your money. Paying extra to jump from a VS2 to a VVS2 is not always worth it, as you won’t see what you’ve paid for… and that money can be put towards something you undeniably will see – the Cut Grade and Carat weight.

The cut grade refers to the accuracy and precision of the stone’s cut, and the symmetry of the facets. We value the cut grade of our diamonds very highly, as this is what makes your stone sparkle!

Straight up; the better the cut, the brighter the sparkle. It’s what gives your stone life and that mesmerizing wow factor – so this isn’t one to overlook! The difference between a Good and an Excellent cut grade diamond is distinct, and it’s part of the reason we say, as a must – wherever you choose to source your ring – that it is imperative you see a stone in person before buying. If it seems to be missing that special “something”, it probably is!

“Not everybody can see color or clarity, but everybody can see size”
Marisa Perry

Carat weight refers to the physical weight of the stone, not the visible size. It is literally weighed on a scale, and whilst there is an approximate weight to size ratio, it can vary greatly. Think of two women, with the same weight on the scale, but with very different heights and body shapes. Diamonds are no different.

– Again, be warned, a stone can be bottom-heavy, and carry much of its weight on its underside (also known as the pavilion), whereas another can be more “spready”, with a larger table, or surface area, and appear considerably larger.

In the realm of online sales, it’s easy to be duped by a seductive carat weight at a seemingly good price. If it sounds too good to be true, it usually is, so again, you must see a stone in person! Can you trust an online diamond? Great question, we recommend you read our comprehensive guide before adding anything “to cart”.

We pride ourselves on doing the hard work for you, by pulling in the very best stones from the very best cutters, at no extra cost to you. We will never show you a stone that isn’t absolutely beautiful, nor one with poor symmetry, little life, or visible inclusions. Everything else – the carat, color, and clarity – we will walk you through and empower you with our knowledge, offering a variety of options for you to decide for yourself.

If you want to go deeper into everything diamond, we’ve got you! Click here for our comprehensive diamond page – we’ve kept it short but smart. Our goal is to get you up to speed on what counts, and why, to save you making costly mistakes!

To learn more about the wild wild west of engagement ring shopping, here are a few more articles that might help!

How to get your partner’s ring size without them knowing

Is it okay to shop together?

What if you can have it all? Why Choose Marisa Perry?