Things I learned buying a ring for my finance: The 4Cs

When I started thinking about getting engaged, I did some online research. I quickly discovered the concept of the 4Cs. Simply put these are the basic components of a diamond and society (and your girlfriend/finance) are likely pushing you to buy a ring that scores high across each C. 

What are the 4cs:

The 4Cs Of Diamonds(your cheat sheet)Cheat sheet for what you need to knowHow important is this?Why your girlfriend cares?
CutDimensions of the diamondMost important of the 4csHas the biggest impact on the sparkle of diamond. Optimize for Cut.
ColorYou want lack of color; absence of color means nicer diamondSecond most important of the 4csThe less the color, the higher grade. Your girlfriend will want to not see coloring in the diamond.
Carat (Weight)Total weight, not just seizeNot related to sparkle (see: cut); in general, the bigger the weight, the pricier the ring.Is your future wife going to be an office where they compared ring sizes during lunch? If so, she will want a bigger ring.
ClarityLeast importantMicrosoptic flaws exist in diamonds, just like they exist in all of us (and our relationships evidently). 

Beyond the 4cs, I learned about 2 other variables that mattered a lot and came up time and time again in the buying process: shape and certification.

The Extra Letters(your cheat sheet)Cheat sheet for what you need to knowHow important is this?Why your girlfriend cares?
ShapeRound, Princess, Emerald, Oval, Pear, Heart, CushionIt’s not very important and won’t impact the price of the cut. More of a style thing.Makes for good conversation; she might want a ring in a certain geometric form factor
CertificationIndependent verification of the diamond and potentially where its from (i.e no blood diamonds)Not important if you are buying from a legit online retailer of rings.Feels good to wear a ring if you know the story behind it.

I didn’t have this cheat sheet when I bought my ring and it would have been helpful to not only have the definitions but understand their relative importance. If you want to get a great ring without breaking the bank, optimize for cut and color. If you want to bling your finance out, ensure that the carat is heavier (and therefore larger).

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