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 know||How important is this?||Why your girlfriend cares?|
|Cut||Dimensions of the diamond||Most important of the 4cs||Has the biggest impact on the sparkle of diamond. Optimize for Cut.|
|Color||You want lack of color; absence of color means nicer diamond||Second most important of the 4cs||The less the color, the higher grade. Your girlfriend will want to not see coloring in the diamond.|
|Carat (Weight)||Total weight, not just seize||Not 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.|
|Clarity||Least important||Microsoptic 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 know||How important is this?||Why your girlfriend cares?|
|Shape||Round, Princess, Emerald, Oval, Pear, Heart, Cushion||It’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|
|Certification||Independent 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).