How Many Different Colored Diamonds Are Out There?

woman wearing colored diamond ring touching face

While perfect natural diamonds are completely colorless and transparent, it is almost impossible to find chemically pure diamonds. Therefore, when certain chemicals are found in the crystalline structure of a diamond, they produce a colored diamond. Based on the intensity, the color of the diamond affects the diamond’s value immensely. The rarest color of diamond is red, and the most common is yellow. The values, therefore, are adjusted accordingly to a diamond’s rarity and the intensity of its color.

White diamonds

For white diamonds, there is a diamond color scale created by the Gemological Institute of America. This diamond color chart ranges from D-Z. A diamond graded at D is pure and transparent. In other words, it can be considered a perfect diamond. A diamond graded Z has a yellowish tint. This yellowish tint makes the diamond look dingy, but if a diamond were to contain more yellow past the Z rating, it would be more desirable because it could be considered a yellow diamond.

For white diamonds, a diamond color and clarity chart is highly important because the more transparent the stone, the more desirable it becomes. The diamond color clarity of colored diamonds still plays a role in the stone’s value, but ultimately, the intensity of the color is the most important factor to consider when grading a colored diamond.

Diamond color spectrum

Colored diamonds can be found in a spectrum of colors from red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, pink, steel gray, brown, white, to black. Although different elements and chemicals affect these colors, all colored diamonds are formed the same way. These elements are fused together with the carbon elements in a process involving intense heat and pressure to form a diamond.

Red & pink diamonds

For red and pink diamonds, the stones are still embedded in the Earth’s crust and therefore, the heat and pressure distort the diamond’s color. These distortions absorb the green light and reflect pink.

Gray & blue diamonds

For gray and blue diamonds, the element boron gets trapped within the diamond. During the process of formation, the boron bonds to the carbon in order to absorb red, yellow, and green light.

Green diamonds

Green diamonds are formed by the absorption of radiation from the Earth’s soil. However, this absorption does not occur until the very end of their journey as a diamond. The absorption of red and yellow light allows these diamonds to reflect green.

Yellow, orange, purple diamonds

Nitrogen elements absorb blue light, and therefore, they reflect to show orange or yellow diamonds. Purple diamonds are also due to the distortion of their structure, but additionally, geologists predict that the presence of hydrogen atoms affect the color.

Beyond these colors, colored diamonds can be representative of an entire spectrum of intensities and hues. This spectrum is not only due to the small amounts of elements, but also because of different amounts of pressure and heat exerted on the diamond during its formation. In the case of green diamonds, radiation levels can also have a significant effect on the color of the stone. Therefore, geologists are unable to determine how the process of the formation of a colored diamond works exactly because there are too many different variables involved.

Red and brown diamonds have been discovered to be much more compressed than white diamonds in general. However, the Argyle mine, by itself, is known to have produced more than ten times the pressure of normal diamond mines, but this mine is also known to produce a large array of differently colored diamonds.

Diamond color popularity

Recently, diamond color has surged in popularity. Nowadays, a unique ring is one of the most highly sought-after characteristics, making colored diamond engagement rings a hot commodity. Along with the popularity, the prices of these colored diamonds have also jumped to combat the demand.

Much of the popularity of colored diamonds can be contributed to famous celebrities sporting their diamond accessories and engagement rings, in particular. Carrie Underwood’s husband, Mike Fisher presented her with a yellow diamond engagement ring. Although hers is large, elegant, and hard to miss, she is not the only celebrity who shows off a yellow diamond engagement ring; Paris Hilton, Heidi Klum, and Adele also popularly have yellow diamond engagement rings.

Mariah Carey’s ring, gifted to her by Nick Cannon, features a large pink diamond. The emerald cut diamond flanked by two white diamonds gives the ring an impressive and beautiful look to represent lasting love. Ben Affleck also sought out the rare pink diamond to make a statement with then-wife, Jennifer Lopez.

With all of the most adored celebrities of today showing off colored diamond engagement rings, it is no wonder why colored diamonds surged in popularity. The possibilities of ring styles and diamond cuts are endless with colored diamonds. They create a truly one-of-a-kind experience for any bride-to-be. Not looking for an engagement ring? No worries, a colored diamond can make the perfect feature piece to any type of jewelry.

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