When we talk about a diamond’s color, we’re referring to either the presence or absence of color in white diamonds. The color of a diamond is a result of it’s chemical makeup and therefore never changes.
Since a colorless diamond lets more light pass through it than a colored diamond, colorless diamonds emit a greater degree of sparkle and fire. Because of the complication formation process of a diamond, only a few, rare diamonds are truly colorless. Hence the whiter the diamond, the greater its value.
Jewelers grade ‘whiteness’ or colorlessness from the GIA’s professional color scale that begins with the highest rating of D for colorless through to Z. The further the grade down the alphabet the greater the traces of faint yellowish or brownish color.
Choosing Color Grade Diamonds
The most valuable and desirable diamonds are graded D through F because of their rarity. Despite this you can still get very attractive diamonds that are graded slightly less than colorless. You should also note that diamonds graded G through I show virtually no color that is visible to the untrained eye and therefore can make very attractive diamonds.
Whilst a very faint hint of yellow will be apparent in diamonds graded J through M, this color visible can often be minimized by carefully selecting the right precious metal in which to mount your diamond. Some people actually prefer the warmer glow of lower-color diamonds, so if you are one of these people you will be able to pick up beautiful stones for far less than colorless stones of equal size and quality.
Fluorescence is an effect that is seen in some gem-quality diamonds when they are exposed to ultraviolet light (similar to the lighting you often see in nightclubs). Under the majority of lighting conditions, this fluorescence is not detectable to the naked eye. Although a lot of traditional gemologists prefer diamonds without this effect, some people really enjoy it. Like many other diamond characteristics, it’s down to an individuals personal taste.