Yellow Diamonds

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Are you looking for a rare and unique engagement ring or piece of diamond jewelry? Yellow diamonds can add a pop of sunshine to any jewelry design.

What causes a diamond to be yellow?

While colorless diamonds are the most widely known and recognized, diamonds have actually been discovered in almost every color. Diamonds derive their color from the chemical makeup of surrounding soil and rocks. Colorless diamonds are made up of carbon atoms but a colored diamond will result when other chemicals are also present. Changes in a diamond’s structure or nearby radiation can also add color to a diamond. Yellow diamonds are formed when nitrogen mixes with carbon. The intensity of the yellow color is determined by the amount of nitrogen in the chemical makeup of the diamond. The more nitrogen, the more vivid the yellow color.

How are yellow diamonds graded?

Most diamonds are graded on a D-to-Z color-grading system. Diamonds graded as a D are considered completely colorless and diamonds graded as Z are light in color but are still graded on the colorless scale. Yellow diamonds are classified to be colored diamonds and receive a “Fancy”  color grade when they fall outside the D-to-Z range (colorless to light-yellow). The GIA Colored Diamond Grading System assigns yellow diamonds one of six color grades: Fancy Light, Fancy, Fancy Dark, Fancy Deep, Fancy Intense, and Fancy Vivid.


Is cut important for a yellow diamond?

The cut of a yellow diamond can vastly change the appearance of the color and even alter the color grade. A diamond cutter will carefully consider the color when choosing a cut for a specific diamond and cut it in such a way as to display the most vivid color possible. The setting of a yellow diamond can also help to display the yellow color in the best way possible. A yellow gold mounting will make the diamond appear darker in color while a white gold mounting can make the color appear lighter.


Can diamonds be enhanced to be yellow?

Diamonds can be treated to enhance or change their color to yellow using HPHT (High Pressure, High Temperature) or coating. HPHT is the process of heating a diamond under high pressure and is considered a stable and permanent treatment under regular jewelry conditions. Sometimes a thin film coating is applied to diamonds to change their color. Coating is not considered a stable or permanent treatment and diamonds with a coating must be handled with care as the coating can easily be scratched off. It is wise to ask about treatments when shopping for a yellow diamond.


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