Diamond Education

Complete Guide about What Diamond Color is and What it Means

Complete Guide about What Diamond Color is and What it Means

Diamonds are formed from carbon in the interior of the earth at high pressures and temperatures. When the earth’s crust sinks into the mantle, which happens constantly, albeit very slowly, carbonates – compounds containing oxidized carbon – fall along with it to depths of hundreds of kilometers. At a depth of about 250 kilometers, they can react with iron. As a result of this interaction, carbon is reduced and diamonds are formed from it. In this Article, We are learning about Diamond Color Grade Chart, Which can Help you to Knowledge about Diamonds.

4C Diamond Rating system

The main indicators affecting the assessment of gemstones are the color of the stone, its clarity, cut and weight, expressed in carats. It is about them that the principle of evaluation (4C), developed by the American Gemological Institute GIA, is based. Each Latin letter C denotes one of the assessment factors:


The main factor influencing the assessment of a gemstone colored gem.

Clarity (Purity)

The degree of “freedom” of a stone from its internal characteristics.


The shape, type of cut, proportions, quality of processing (symmetry, polishing, etc.) are taken into account.

Carat weight

The mass of the stone in carats (1 carat is equal to 0.2 grams). Did you Know What is a diamond carat?

Diamond Color

Diamonds acquire their color due to various inclusions and impurities, structural defects or natural radiation exposure. The color of the diamond can be uneven – spots or areas, and only the top layer can be colored. Sometimes several colors are present in one diamond. In nature, the most common diamonds are colored in pale tones of various colors.

Colorless diamonds are very rare. Even if a diamond is colorless, then most often it is possible to find some color shade in it, which experts call “bloom”. A completely colorless and pure diamond is called a “pure water” stone. You can read about the origin of this name at the end of this article. “Pure water” diamonds are very rare since in the overwhelming majority of cases the stones have no color, impurities or defects.

The color of a diamond is what is invisible to the eye. Diamonds are measured by how imminent, they are two colorless: the less color, the greater their value. The exception is fancy diamonds (pink, blue, etc.) that fall outside this color range.

Most diamonds in jewelry chains are colorless to nearly colorless with minor shades of yellow or brown.
Since the light source and background significantly affect the perception of color, the color of a diamond is judged under standardized conditions. GIA color evaluators submit their independent opinions to the system.

At this stage, the evaluators have no information about the color decisions previously entered into the system. As a result, the color scheme is determined when there is a sufficient number of agreeing opinions.

Thus, color is one of the main classification features by which the quality and cost of stones used in the manufacture of jewelry are determined. It is determined by the absence (colorless) or the presence of natural color in the gemstone, which is characterized by hue, Tone, and Saturation. This characteristic is based on the property of the stone to give rise to a certain visual sensation.

What Basic colors are diamonds?

The most valuable is completely colorless diamonds or with a shade of blue, as well as with a bright fantasy color – blue, pink, red, yellow, green, etc., however, most of the mined diamonds have yellow, brown or sulfur shades of varying intensity. Diamonds are conventionally divided into four types:

  • Colorless
  • Shades of different saturation
  • Colored: yellow with shades of different saturation, brown with shades of differences Saturation
  • Fancy color

International Diamond Color Grading System

Many jewelers use the professional color scale GIA (Gemological Institute Of America). The color scale is divided into groups depending on how noticeable the color of the stone is, starting with completely colorless stones and further, as the saturation of the hue increases, to the last group – diamonds with a yellow color. Each group is designated by a letter of the Latin alphabet: from D – colorless stones to Z – light yellow or with a visible brown tint. Each letter in the gamut corresponds to a specific spectrum of colors.

Assessing a diamond’s color comes down to determining a color group. The coloration of yellow and brownstones with a color characteristic below Z is considered to be fancy. For stones with a fancy color, there are color groups; when characterizing such stones, they use the word fancy, then describe the color and its intensity.

To create a universal scale for evaluating diamonds by color, gemologists at the GIA have carefully selected several reference stones. To determine the color of the graded diamonds, they are compared with the reference stones.

Color evaluation procedure

To determine the color of jewelry stones, a neutral white background, a color scale and specially selected reference samples for comparison are used. The evaluated sample is positioned with the crown up, visual inspection is carried out perpendicular to the site. The results of instrumental measurements can also be analyzed.

Gemologists use the GIA grading system to describe color in terms of three components (hue, hue, saturation). This system is based on the Mansel color system.

For uncut gemstones and for a cut in setting, which makes it difficult to determine the color, only the assessment of the component of the color shade is carried out. When describing a stone, a common commercial name for its color can be used, for example, Swarovski Luminous Green. Swarovski has over 80 unique colors in its portfolio.

Color Rating Scale

The GIA Diamond Color Grading Scale is the enterprise pattern. The scale consists of Latin letters from D to Z, where D is colorless, and Z is light yellow or brown, that is, the gradation occurs as the presence of color increases.

Each letter grade has a clearly defined range of color characteristics: a group of colorless stones, almost colorless, with a weak color, very light, light. Color grading of diamonds is executed by matching them with stones of identifying color below to control lighting and clear viewing requirements.

The distinction between some colors is so subtle that it is inaccessible to the naked eye. But these small differences significantly affect the quality and price of diamonds.

Many wonders why the scale does not start with the letter A. Before the GIA developed the D-Z color scale, several other systems were poorly applied. These included a system with letter designations (A, B and C, several letters A for the best stones), numeric – Arabic numerals (from 0 to 3) and Roman numerals (I, II, III), as well as descriptive characteristics of diamonds such as “Gem blue” or “blue and white”.

Let’s Look at Below Video for More Detailed Information about Diamond Color in Graphic view.

The use of such scoring systems has led to inconsistency and imprecision. Because the creators of the GIA color system wanted to start all over again, they chose the D as their initial value as a letter grade not usually associated with top quality.

The GIA Grades Diamond Color on the Below Color Scale, Look at;

Colorless Diamond

D (Absolutely Colorless)

D (Absolutely Colorless)

This picture shows what a color D diamond looks like. This is the highest quality and the most valuable in terms of color is the color of diamond D.

All other colors, it is a certificate. Color D diamonds are considered “colorless” diamonds and are the most colorless.

E (Colorless)

E (Colorless) Diamonds

The image shows what a color E diamond looks like. This is the second-highest quality grade and also the second most valuable diamond in terms of color E.

As mentioned above, you need either an expert or a certificate to make sure that you have color E diamond, as some may confuse it with D or F. Color E diamonds are regarded “colorless diamonds” and are the second most common colorless of all.

F (Colorless)

F (Colorless) Diamonds

This image explains what the color F diamond looks like. This is the third quality class and also the third most valuable in terms of color – these are F color diamonds. Only a qualified specialist can distinguish a color D diamond from an E or F color.

Diamonds in color F are considered ” colorless diamonds “and are the third most colorless of all.

G (Near Colorless)

G (Colorless) Diamonds

This image shows what a G-color diamond looks like. Nearly colorless diamonds are very difficult to distinguish, but people with high to moderate diamond knowledge should be able to see the yellow tint. Many people do not know the difference between colorless diamonds and diamonds with a slight tint, but we would like to show you a table that is as accurate as possible in accordance with the most stringent standards.

H (Near Colorless)

H (Colorless) Diamonds

This image explains what the color H diamond looks like. As stated above. An important note for the G and H colors is that while someone with substantial knowledge should be able to discern diamonds in the GH range, they will still not be able to say with certainty which of the two they belong to. Both varieties are close to colorless diamonds and although they are not colorless, they are still of high quality.

I (Near Colorless)

I (Colorless) Diamonds

This image displays what an I color diamond looks like. There are glimmers of yellow, but it is still difficult to distinguish from other diamonds of a similar color, some people refer to color I diamonds as almost colorless, while theirs classify them as diamonds with a slight tint.

It is quite clear that these diamonds are off-white, although they still appear to be relatively white in color.

J (Near Colorless)

J (Colorless) Diamonds

This image tells what a J-color diamond looks like. The last of the nearly colorless or lightly tinted diamonds are J. Almost indistinguishable from I, it already has a yellow tint in the right light. We have noticed that customers are very pleased when choosing a quality J or higher, with the yellowish color appearing less yellow in the yellow frame, and the yellow iciness is really noticeable in the white frame.

K (Faint), L, M (Slightly Tinted)

K (Faint), L, M (Slightly Tinted) Diamonds

This picture shows what a K-color diamond looks like. Pale yellow diamonds are K, L, M. This range of colors begins to show a very light yellow tint visible in good light. It is still a light color, but everyone can agree that it is no longer white.

K color diamonds are classified as “faint tint” on the GIA’s diamond color range, indicating they have a slight yellow tint that’s apparent even to the naked eye.

L color diamonds have a yellow tint that’s apparent to the naked eye in regular lighting situations. L Diamonds are much more economical than those in the G to J range, giving them a genuine value for money choice.

M color diamonds have a distinctly yellow tint that’s apparent to the naked eye. Like K and L diamonds, M diamonds give excellent value for money when matched to near colorless or colorless diamonds.

N, O, P, Q, R (Very Light Color)

N, O, P, Q, R (Very Light Color) Diamonds color

This image shows what the color N diamond seems like. This range includes the colors N, O, P, Q, R. A very light but very noticeable yellow is starting to show in this class, but these diamonds are still more white than yellow.

Due to the large number of customers dissatisfied with diamonds in these colors, most jewelers and diamond traders choose not to deal with diamonds within this range. We do not suggest diamonds of an N-R category.

S, T, U, V, W, X, Y, Z (Light Color)

S, T, U, V, W, X, Y, Z (Light Color) Diamonds color

This image explains what the S-Z color diamonds look like. Light yellow diamonds include the colors S, T, U, V, W, X, Y, and Z. In this class, yellow is highly visible, albeit a relatively light color, the vast majority of people believe that these are more visually unattractive colors, and prefers a lighter or trendy color. Diamonds of an S-Z series have simply prominent yellow or brown tinting. For this logic, We do not suggest S-Z diamonds. Diamonds in the L-Z range have a noticeably mild yellow hue which does not match the quality and significance standards at Gemistone. We do, yet, trade fancy colored diamonds that are rated on a diverse scale and are extremely prized.


Fluorescence is a natural phenomenon that affects about a third of diamonds suitable for use in jewelry. In this case, the diamond emits a soft glow when exposed to ultraviolet rays. It is caused by the presence of nitrogen.

When a Diamond Exhibits Fluorescence, There are Two Factors to consider

Diamond Fluorescence

The most common color of Fluorescence is blue (95%) or yellow. Diamonds with blue fluorescence appear whiter than indicated on their certificate. 

Diamonds with yellow fluorescence appear yellower when exposed to ultraviolet light. Thus, a diamond with yellow fluorescence may look like a diamond of a lower color group, although its real color is in a higher group.


The fluorescence strength ranges from zero to medium, high to very high. To the untrained observer, most diamonds do not exhibit noticeable fluorescence.  If strong yellow fluorescence is observed, it can reduce the value of the diamond. 

At the same time, the presence of blue fluorescence can increase the value of a diamond in a lower color group. If the diamond exhibits fluorescence, this is indicated on the Certificate of Authenticity issued by the GIA or EGL.

Fancy Diamonds

Fancy diamonds, which are naturally yellow, pink, green or blue, are classified by color separately from white and are considered extremely rare and valuable. They are classified by color saturation. The richer the shade, the higher their value. A diamond with a yellow tint is not the same as a natural fancy yellow diamond. The yellow tint of the white diamond is dull, while the fancy yellow diamond is bright and thick. The color rating of each certified diamond is shown on the enclosed GIA, EGL or SGL certification.

Some of the Fancy Diamonds are Provided by Gemistone Jewelers are Below:

  • Black
  • Green
  • Blue
  • Yellow
  • Brown
  • Pink Diamonds

Fancy diamonds aren’t just pretty; their ability to play with light is in no way inferior to colorless diamonds, but they have individuality, are remembered immediately and forever. No wonder in ancient times they were owned only by royalty. Today, true connoisseurs of beauty include colored diamonds in exquisite collections. Any colored diamond, regardless of size and shade, is unique by the tones and shades of its color, the degree of its saturation, and its brightness. Out of a thousand diamonds, only one has a thick natural color.

Fancy color diamonds are categorized on the intensiveness of its color. Rather than a letter, the level for fancy color diamonds pass from “Faint” to “Fancy Deep.” The color scale is like that:

  • Faint
  • Very Light
  • Light
  • Fancy Light
  • Fancy
  • Fancy Intense
  • Fancy Vivid, Fancy Deep or Fancy Dark

Fancy Vivid or Fancy Intense diamonds are commonly the most sought-after fancy colored diamonds, and therefore are ordinarily the most pricey, whereas Faint or Light colors are more usual and more cheaply.

How to Pick a Diamond Color before Purchasing?

When purchasing a fancy-colored diamond, there are some tips to carry in mind:

  1. Have a cost range in mind because doing so will guide you to the gem color and family.
  2. Read a concise on fancy colored stones to understand how to choose.
  3. Keep your choices open when it becomes fancy colors since you may be weak to get a particular kind of stone. Yet, there are many others up for sale that might be tolerable, if not greater than the fundamental choice.

How to Pick Best Color for your Diamond Jewelry?

Having decided to buy a piece of diamond jewelry, many of us spend a lot of time and effort looking for a suitable item that combines the parameters of price and quality, forgetting about the most important aspect – the color of the stone itself. However, not all of us know for certain what colors, these mysterious and very beautiful stones are.

Colored diamonds belong to a special group of precious stones. The color of a diamond is determined by visual assessment, sometimes special lamps are used, which have a special color section and color temperature. Today you can find diamonds of absolutely different shades – reddish, pink, blue, purple, yellow, green, etc. Very often in nature some samples have all shades of yellow, which are included in the same group with transparent diamonds.

The ideal stone is considered to be a completely transparent diamond crystal, which has no color and conforms to category D according to the international grading system. The color is determined by the amount and composition of impurities. At the same time, there is a fairly large gamut of various shades, from dark brown to completely transparent, there may also be shades that start with pale yellow and end with green-yellow. This color depends on the amount of nitrogen, which is unevenly distributed over the crystal. These types of diamonds are mainly of a rich yellow or brown hue. Bluestones depend on the number of boron atoms. Such diamonds are capable of conducting electricity through themselves. The green tint is determined by the presence of radioactive uranium or thorium in its composition. The rarest is considered to be pink diamonds, which smoothly turns into brown.

What is most interesting is that black diamonds or Carbonado diamonds are quite common. But they are practically not given to faceting, since they contain microscopic graphite plates of black color. Due to the high content of graphite, the stone has a metallic luster, which makes it almost opaque.


When watching fоr thе реrfесt dіаmоnd, it is necessary to get the elements that profoundly influence the diamond’s beauty and color. When you have chosen the shape and cut, perspectives like color can be brought into judgment. Further, as discussed in this article, assure that color does not need a front post to your diamond.

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