A Consumer's Guide to Colored Diamonds

bullet imagebullet imageWho doesn't love an exquisitely beautiful diamond? Born of the earth under intense heat and pressure, over billions of years in the making, humans have been enamored with these precious gemstones for thousands of years. It is not a love affair ending anytime soon either. Most people are familiar with the crystal-clear transparent diamonds, the ones with no hint of color, typically seen in a woman's wedding ring. Depending on the amount of color and the intensity of the color, it can either detract from or add to, the value of a diamond. For example, white diamonds with a detectable yellow hue are usually discounted in value. Diamonds with dark pink or blue color (think Hope Diamond) are considerably more valuable. Of all the colors, red diamonds are the most valuable because of their rarity. So rare are red diamonds, that only 1-percent of the world's jewelers have ever laid eyes on one.

Documentation of colored diamonds first dates back to the 1600's when a French precious stone trader returned from India with what is known as the infamous "Hope Diamond", a magnificent blue diamond. Colored diamonds or fancy diamonds are valued according to the intensity or darkness of their color. The intensity of the color is rated on a scale ranging from Light, Fancy, Intense and Vivid and degrees in-between. A colored diamond's value increases with the intensity of its color. Naturally colored diamonds are a group apart from colorless, or white, diamonds and, therefore, graded differently.

Colored diamonds, such as those available through diamondenvy.com, are a result of naturally occurring impurities or defects causing the coloration. Colored diamonds offered by diamondenvy can have one, but not more than two, base colors, and one color modifier (Fancy, Vivid, etc). Examples would be Fancy Intense Pink or Fancy Vivid Brown-Pink. The colors found in natural diamonds are Pink, Purple, Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Champagne (Brown), Black, Grey, and Chameleon.

Pink diamonds are rare and have become collectibles as well as investments. Red diamonds are the rarest of all colors with only 20 natural red diamonds known in existence. Orange diamonds are usually the least expensive due to modifying colors of yellow and brown. Green diamonds owe their color to radiation exposure. Yellow diamonds were not popular until recently when many celebrities started wearing them. Blue diamonds are also very rare and very expensive. Chameleon diamonds are the only diamond that changes color from green to yellow.

A disturbing fact about diamond mining is that of "blood diamonds" or "conflict diamonds". Revolutionary groups in west African countries and central Africa have seized control of the diamond mines. They fund their operations with the proceeds from the sale of these diamonds. Although measures have been taken to reduce the amount of conflict diamonds on the market, it is estimated that up to 3-percent of diamonds traded are conflict diamonds. Consumers can avoid purchasing such diamonds by buying through reputable suppliers like http://diamondenvy.com/, who only procure their diamonds from reputable sources