The Colorful Side of Diamonds
Everyone knows that diamonds are rare. But the formation of natural color diamonds requires the presence of not only the original magic formula for all diamond creation of unimaginable heat and pressure placed on carbon crystals, but the presence of additional trace elements, as well.
When these elements interact with carbon atoms during a diamond’s creation, they can change a diamond’s color. Radiation during the creation process also can alter a diamond’s color. It is estimated that for every natural color diamond, there are 10,000 colorless diamonds that have made the arduous journey to the earth’s surface. This entirely natural process ensures that each natural color diamond is one-of-a-kind.
Unlike colorless diamonds, which are judged in terms of strict quality grades of carat weight, clarity, color and cut, natural color diamonds are unique in that color is generally the most important indicator of quality and value. These colorful gems are judged on the basis of hue (the dominant color of the stone), tone (how much lightness or darkness of color a stone retains) and saturation (strength and intensity of the hue).
Some colors, such as brown and yellow, are available in a wide range of sizes, while blues, reds and greens are much rarer, particularly in larger sizes. This means they typically command higher prices.