Diamond Color

What is diamond color?

Diamond color refers to the natural tint or hue of a diamond. It's not the color of a diamond that makes it more valuable, but rather the lack of color. A diamond's color evaluation is based on the absence of color - the less visible the color, the more expensive the diamond. Many diamond color distinctions are subtle and invisible to the untrained eye, but color grades play a large part in determining a diamond's overall quality and price.

How are diamond color grades determined?

Diamond color grades are based on a color scale that ranges from D (colorless) to Z (light yellow or brown). Grades are determined by comparing the diamond in question to a set of "master stones" that represent the least amount of color accepted on the corresponding scale. The diamond being graded is then compared side-by-side with these master stones under standardized lighting conditions to determine its color grade.

The grader will take into account a range of factors when determining the diamond's color grade, including the presence of any tint, the hue, saturation, and tone of color. This is done using a standardized set of criteria and a consistent set of lighting conditions to ensure accurate and consistent grading across different diamonds.

As the diamond's color grade moves down the scale, the presence of yellow or brown tint becomes more noticeable.

diamond color grades

How important is diamond color?

Diamond color is one of the 4Cs for a reason, it plays an essential factor in determining a diamond's overall quality and value. The color grade of a diamond can affect its appearance, brilliance, and price/value.

Colorless diamonds, for example, are generally the most valuable and sought-after because they allow more light to pass through them, resulting in better brilliance and sparkle. 

We'll give you a bonus tip, the larger the diamond, the more visible to color. If you're shopping for diamond over 1 carat, we recommend not skimping on color and look for H color diamonds or higher.

Which diamond color should I choose?

We are going to let you in on a little secret, diamond color grades are actually predominantly determined from the side. A near-colorless or even a slightly tinted diamond will, from the top down, still look pretty brilliant on its own. Only a trained eye and a side-by-side comparison is likely to tell the different between colorless and near-colorless, for example. So if you're looking for excellent value and brilliance, we encourage you to explore near-colorless diamonds as they provide the best bang for your buck!

Our most asked questions about diamond color