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The value of a diamond is from its visual appearance which fall into four categories. The best diamonds have the most of all four.
Brightness. The amount of internal and external white light reflected by the diamond.
Fire. The brilliant scattering of white light into all the colors of the rainbow.
Scintillation. The intensity of sparkle the diamond produces. Which is affected by the pattern of light and dark areas caused by reflections within the diamond.
Cut. The cut grade is the design and craftsmanship of the diamond. This includes weight relative to its diameter, girdle thickness, symmetry of its facet arrangement and the quality of polish on those facets.
Diamond Grades: Follow the four 'C's'. Cut - Clarity - Color & Carat.

Best Grade of Diamond cut
Excellent: {FL, IF, VVS1/2}
The best quality diamond has an even pattern of bright and dark areas. Giving it enhanced scintillation, fire and brightness
Good grade of diamond cut
Good: {VS1, VS2}
This diamond’s grade is limited by its scintillation. The shallow pavilion angle creates more darkness in the center reducing its sparkle.
Fair grade diamond cut
SI1 and SI2 (Slightly Included ) Inclusions are noticeable under 10x magnification
Poor grade diamond cut
Poor: {I1,I2,L3}
Steep crown angle, very steep pavilion angle, and large total depth all cause this diamond to have a very dark table area, along with a very dark upper-girdle areas severely limiting its fire and scintillation

In addition, diamond dealers look at the quality of polish the stone has, which is graded from poor, good or excellent. The majority of high street diamonds fall within 'good' or 'poor' for cheaper jewellery. A dealer also checks that the diamond has no Fluorescence (they emit a soft bluish glow when subjected to ultraviolet light) as this depreciates price by at least 15%. However a little trick used in the jewellery trade makes use of the fluorescence, as to the naked eye (the buyer) it can make lower graded diamonds of I-M color (slight yellowish tint - see color chart below) appear one grade whiter in daylight. So diamonds falling within that lower color and price range are often passed off as more expensive F, G or H if they have a medium or very high fluorescence.
Colored Diamonds:
Blue DiamondPink DiamondYellow DiamondGreen Diamond
The rarest, and often most expensive diamonds are fancy color diamonds. These are normally blues, greens or pink diamonds.
Though yellow diamonds are becoming very popular and pricey. As only one colored diamond is found amongst many thousands or ordinary ones, they are quite rare and valuable.

Real Diamonds:
There are many fake / simulated diamond stones that only look like diamonds. Such as cubic zirconium, white sapphire, moissanite, zircon, rutile, spinel or synthetic garnet. While any reputable jewelers would know immediately they are fake look alike's, there are many online sellers who pass these off to unknowing customers. SEE 'How to Spot Fake Diamonds'.

There are two types of real diamonds, Natural Mined or Lab Grown.
Over the past couple decades, lab grown diamonds have become the norm as they can be grown to the best clarity and brilliance of an FL (flawless) earth diamond.
A lab grown diamond is identical in every way to a mined one as it is cloned from a pure real diamond seed. They are grown in Lab conditions resembling those where natural diamonds formed with heat and pressure. The result is a diamond of same chemical, physical and optical properties as a flawless natural diamond. The cloning process takes a few weeks to grow depending on the carat size.
Being a high quality FL, VVS or VS1 real diamond in every way, they are indistinguishable from a mined diamond, even to a jeweler.
The advantage and popularity of man made diamonds has grown to the extent that most modern jewelry uses man made diamonds. They are sold as real diamonds because they are real diamonds.
Of great consideration also is less impact on the environment as opposed to open mining diamonds, greatly encouraging the desire to own them as opposed to recklessly mined or even blood diamonds.
Even the top diamond dealers in the world like De'Bere sell lab made diamonds these days.
Though a flawless certified earth mined diamond is still the most expensive, especially if a natural fancy colour diamond.

Diamonds are colored from excellent (white - D) to poor (yellowish - Z)
diamond colour chart

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