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Diamond Grading Reports


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Diamond AppraisalsDiamond Brands • Diamond Grading Reports

Unless you are an experienced jeweler, it can be difficult to tell one diamond from the next.  So how do you know what you are buying in terms of color and clarity?  Well, since 1955, all diamonds have come with a grading report, sometimes also known as a certification or "cert."

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The color and clarity grades seen on a grading report were developed by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) in 1952.  While the GIA still issues grading reports, other reputable diamond reports are issued by the Hoge Raad voor Diamant (HRD) of Antwerp, Belgium, as well as the International Gemological Institute (IGI), the European Gemological Laboratory (EGL USA), and several others.

A diamond grading report does not appraise the diamond or include its value.  Instead, it is a report that identifies and describes the diamond.

Grading reports are often considered more authentic than appraisals, because the labs that grade diamonds have more knowledge and better equipment to examine gems than jewelers, dealers, and appraisers.

So what can you find on a diamond grading report?  The report should include the diamond's shape and cutting style, including measurements and weight.  The proportions of the diamond will also be noted, including the diamond's depth, table, girdle, and culet.  The finish of the diamond, including its polish and symmetry, will also be noted.

Two of the most important pieces of information on a diamond grading report include the diamond's clarity and color grades.  Clarity grades range from VVS(1), which denotes a diamond with very, very few slight inclusions, to I(3), which indicates a diamond with many inclusions.  There are seven intervening grades that describe diamonds that are very slightly included, slightly included, and included.  The more inclusions – or flaws – a diamond has, the less valuable it is.

The color scale is also denoted by letters, which range from D to Z.  Diamonds that fall into the D, E, and F categories are colorless, while those that fall into the H, I, or J categories are almost colorless.  As the letters increase, so does the color of the diamond.  In general, colorless diamonds are more valuable than diamonds with color, unless the diamond is a rare natural color, such as pink.

While brilliance was never traditionally included on diamond reports, it has been included since 2005.  Brilliance refers to the amount of light that comes from a gemstone when it is face up.

Whether you are selling your diamond or just want to know a little bit more about the one you own, a diamond grading report is an excellent resource to have on file.

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Diamond Grading Reports

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