As vintage vixen Marilyn Monroe sang, “Diamonds are a girl's best friend”, we are curious to find out what makes Diamonds truly valuable and why do they cost an arm and leg? Other than the classic colour of dazzling white, did you know Diamonds also actually naturally occur in an array of shades like pink, blue, yellow and even as black diamonds? In our lifetime, these gemstones have come to symbolise the height of affluence and affection like no other natural stone has. Read on as we learn more about these jewelled sparkles and if they are truly worth your money.
What exactly is a Diamond?
A Diamond is the most concentrated form of natural pure carbon. For all its beauty, Diamonds are almost no different from coal or graphite – both are crystalline components of pure carbon. However, before you go running off into thinking you can make Diamonds out of coal, you must know the difference between a Diamond and a block of coal is found on the molecular level… but we shan’t delve too much into that as it will probably involve many words we can’t even pronounce. Nevertheless, those molecular differences are what holds the secrets to its range of unique physical properties; making a Diamond far more superior in strength and the strongest mineral formed in the Earth’s crust.
Are Diamonds rare?
At present, there are only four jewels officially categorised as precious stones – Sapphire, Emerald, Diamond and Ruby. Diamonds are no rarer compared to these other gemstones. However, according to geologists Diamonds is indeed an unusual creation of nature of an organic process requiring just the right amount of four key ingredients: carbon, pressure, heat and time… LOTS of time. Diamonds take billions of years to form what we know as raw diamond ore and be delivered to the surface of Earths crust by deep-source volcanic eruptions in a very specific manner to form Kimberlites. In addition, Diamonds are not found in every part of the world but high-quality Diamonds that can be used in jewellery making to produce that brilliant “fire” is considered a rare find, those that are, are indeed a cut above the rest.
Busting the Size Myths
Bigger isn’t always better. If you thought that the size or carat weight of a Diamond is the only factor in used to assess the value of the diamond, you are gravely mistaken. Today, a Diamonds value is typically measured by benchmarking it against the “Four C’s” which are; Colour, Clarity, Cut, and Carat. No single characteristic outweighs another as collectively the grading from these four categories will all contribute in determining the price of the final retail value of a Diamond. Read more on the 4C’s HERE.
For example, you can have a whopping 10-carat diamond, but if the diamond clarity is low and has speckles of yellow tints, it does not guarantee the huge stone will be worth more than a smaller sized 7-carat diamond with perfect clarity. Do note that while white diamonds with yellow tints are discounted in value, a fancy-coloured yellow diamond with a rare intense hue and saturated colour is not treated like a cheap diamond or low-quality stone. In fact, they can be just as expensive (or more) as brilliant deep coloured diamonds are rare.
As a matter of fact, the most expensive diamond ever sold in the world is not colourless but the largest known Vivid Pink Diamond named The Pink Star which sold for a whopping $73 million! The oval-shaped 59.6-carat pink diamond broke the record for the highest price ever paid for a jewel.
The Cullinan Diamond was the biggest colourless diamond ever discovered. Discovered at a mine in South Africa on 26 January 1905, weighing a mind-boggling 3,106 carats, the gem-quality Diamond was handed to King Edward VII after being mined. Split into three pieces thereafter, the biggest piece of all can be found at the Tower of London among the Crown Jewels. Here’s a list of the most expensive Diamonds in the world, you might be tickled pink to find out that they are all mostly coloured Diamonds.
Why do we use Diamonds for engagement rings?
Today, over 80% of women in the U.S. receive diamond rings when they get engaged, making Diamond engagement rings the reigning winner as most popular choice. We have to thank (or not) a particularly romantically-minded Austrian aristocrat named Archduke Maximilian who decided to give his fiancée, Mary of Burgundy, a diamond ring when he proposed to her waaaay back in 1477.
Though in its roughest form, diamond ore doesn't look like anything like the shiny nuggets atop engagement rings. Diamonds need to be sorted, cut and polished to bring out their lustre. There are also many diamond cuts to choose from such as princess cut, oval cut and cushion cut to name a few but the round brilliant diamond remains the most sought after. However, the round brilliant cut is renowned for being the most expensive cut because more of the rough diamond is discarded in the cutting process. So you might want to rethink your diamond cut of choice.
Besides rings, diamond earrings like this Diamond Sakura earrings make for a great wedding jewellery gift to a bride-to-be as she is getting ready for her big day.
What makes Diamonds so valuable?
For centuries, Diamonds have been a sign of power, wealth and status. Anyone who wants to give the impression of utmost decadence will only have to get inspiration from celebrities like Grace Kelly to Kim K who has been photographed wearing diamonds worth millions of dollars and want to emulate them in some way. Of course we can’t all be Elizabeth Taylor, who was often seen donning her 33-carat Krupp Diamond set in a ring.
Symbol of Rarity
This exceptionally long process taken to form diamonds means we cannot realistically expect nature to form more natural diamonds during our lifetime (if it’s even possible). Thus this reinforces the link between Diamonds and a symbol of a piece of fine jewellery you can own today but one day pass on to your future descendants as a representation of owning a piece of Earth’s history.
Diamonds will continue to have everlasting intrinsic value. Besides the obvious physical benefits that its unparalleled hardness makes diamonds ideal heirloom pieces, Diamonds also have a wonderful story attached – that its formation of requires an almost magic touch emphasizing the testament of endurance and strength and the ultimate symbol of love.
It’s Hard Work
It does take intense labour and time to dig the raw gems by digging them out with tools and equipment. Taking hundreds of tons of ore to produce a 1.00-carat gem, it is no surprise that diamonds come attached with a high price due to the cost involved throughout the entire mining process.
At the end of the day, the Diamond is not only beautiful but it can be pretty dang versatile. Diamonds are in high demand even outside of the jewellery market as diamonds conduct heat five times faster than copper, can pass or block electrical currents and endure extreme temperatures and chemical exposure. What a gem!
Should I Be Willing to Sell My Kidneys for a Diamond?
Before you feel like the whole Diamond industry is a con masked by clever marketing propaganda, understand that diamonds have long been considered a valuable stone. Ancient Greeks revered it as the indestructible stone and believed it to have mystical powers. For centuries, royalty and noblemen have worn diamonds as a status symbol. With such a long history of Diamond engagement rings dating back to the 1400s, the people’s adoration for diamonds today is not a new phenomenon at all.
It’s hard to deny the undeniably dazzling, brilliant and mesmerizing beauty of Diamonds, worthy of awe. So you will be happy to know that not all Diamonds are expensive and you won’t be having to sell any spare organs. With JEOEL’s Diamond range of fine jewellery, a naturally sourced authentic Diamond is yours to take home starting from as low as RM179.
JEOEL Diamond products are designed to empower young millennials to independently purchase their own real diamond jewellery, made with near colourless and sparkling 1.5mm to 2.0mm wide round brilliant natural diamonds. Visit our website for the entire Diamond Collection.