Diamonds are the most valuable mineral on Earth. Not all diamonds are equally valuable though and their size is not the only indicator of quality. A raw diamond looks more like a piece of glass. Only careful expert craftsmanship and perfect cutting of facets turn this unrefined raw material into a glimmering gem.
Experts assess diamond quality according to four criteria known as the four “C”s: cut, clarity, color, and carat weight. These qualities are defined for the individual stones before they are placed in a piece of jewelry.
ALO Jewelry uses only diamonds that meet the highest standards. For each piece of diamond jewelry from our collection we issue a certificate verifying the authenticity of the precious stone and describing its excellent quality in detail. Stones of size above one carat also receive a certificate from the independent internationally recognized GIA Laboratory. Its assessment is respected by diamond experts worldwide.
The High Quality of ALO diamonds
Since we buy the stones for our jewelry in person in the world diamond trading centers of prestigious exchanges in Antwerp and Israel, we can offer you first-class diamonds at very attractive prices. ALO diamond jewelry is top-quality, highly durable, and makes a wonderful investment. You can experience its most important quality yourself at first sight: it is exceedingly beautiful.
RoundThe round diamond shape is currently the most popular and most sought-after. It reflects light and thereby enhances the brilliance of the diamond. For hundreds of years, diamond cutters have used their knowledge of optical factors and complex mathematical calculations to achieve the ideal shape of the round diamond. As a result they have arrived at the currently classic shape, cut into 57 facets.
EmeraldThis shape primarily brings out the clarity of a diamond. It differs from the others in its bottom section, called a pavilion, which is cut into rectangular facets, creating a unique optical impression. Like the classic round cut, it is arranged into 57 facets.
MarquiseThe elegant Marquise shape, composed of 55 facets, allows the diamond to retain the highest carat weight. Moreover, this shape seems larger when examined by the naked eye. Individual Marquise diamonds can differ by being wider or narrower.
RadiantA four-sided diamond with splayed corners has a very diverse range of use. It is used in square as well as in rectangular shapes. It is composed of 70 facets.
HeartThe romantic shape of this diamond, composed of 59 facets, designates it for a very specific purpose. It usually tends to be a part of engagement ring or as an expression of your romantic feelings.
PrincessThe four-sided Princess shape is particularly popular in engagement rings. Its proportions among the individual diamonds can differ significantly, and therefore the Princess can have either a square or rectangular shape. It has a high number of facets - 76.
AsscherThe Asscher is highly reminiscent of the Emerald, but it has a square shape. It brings out the clarity of the diamond. Its bottom section, called the pavilion, is cut into rectangular facets, creating a unique optical impression. It is composed of 57 facets.
OVALDiamonds cut into an oval shape, or a round shape, greatly enhances the brilliance of the diamond. This shape is composed of 55 facets. It is usually placed into rings which look particularly good on long, slim fingers.
PearA diamond in a teardrop shape with one end pointed and the other curved, can be mounted in various types of jewelry. It is made up of 56 facets. When mounted in rings, this elongated teardrop has a slimming effect on the finger.
CushionThis diamond in the shape of a cushion with rounded corners has 58 facets and is noted for its unique brilliance. This shape brings out the exceptional clarity of the stones.
The quality of the cut is one of the "four Cs" or basic criteria according to which jewelers assess all diamonds. Why is the cut so important? The cut of the diamond determines how the gem will reflect light. The better the cut, the more brilliant the diamond. A perfectly cut diamond is sparkling from all angles and there is an iridescent glimmer called fire, which is created by reflection of light against the individual facets. Compared to this, a poorly cut diamond is cloudy, glassy, and contains areas which appear darker since they do not reflect light.
Ideal / Excellent
Top cut diamonds of the highest quality represent approximately three per cent of overall diamond production. They reflect almost all light which hits the diamond.
Diamonds in this category make up approximately 15% of the highest quality cut diamonds. They reflect almost the same volume of light as an Ideal / Excellent diamond and for a non-expert eye they are for the most part indistinguishable.
About a quarter of diamond production falls into this category. They reflect a majority of the light that hits the facets.
Still a quality cut diamond, the level of brilliance of diamonds in this category is recognizably lower than diamonds of higher categories.
These diamonds do not meet the requirements for quality cut. Most of the light which falls on the diamond is lost, which causes the stone to lose its brilliance.
ALO diamonds uses only diamonds from the Ideal or Excellent and Very Good categories. We place only the narrowest selection of top cut diamonds in our jewelry.
A diamond with no color is considered perfect. These diamonds can best distribute light and create an iridescent glimmer called fire. The majority of natural diamonds contain coloration caused by minute impurities inside the stone. This coloration, while practically imperceptible to the naked eye, can cause differences in the price of individual diamonds by thousands of dollars.
We divide white diamonds according to following color categories:
First-class white +
The most highly ranked (only extremly rare diamonds).
An expert gemologist with a trained eye can detect imperceptible traces of coloration. This is a very rare diamond.
Very white +
An expert gemologist can observe coloration, but the diamond can still be considered colorless. This is a diamond of very high quality.
An almost colorless diamond.
Colouration is evident when compared to diamonds of higher categories. Nonetheless this is still a stone of excellent quality.
Lightly toned white
We do not use these diamonds at ALO.
We do not use these diamonds at ALO.
Light yellow – almost yellow
We do not use these diamonds at ALO.
Please note that naturally colored diamonds also exist. For these, the coloration is desirable and their price is many times higher than the price of white diamonds.
A perfect diamond is very rare. Almost all diamonds contain minor flaws and imperfections – for example, microscopic scratches or traces of other minerals. A diamond is considered “flawless” when it has no visible external or internal flaws at ten-times magnification. Truly flawless diamonds are very rare which is reflected by their high price.
We divide diamonds by clarity into the following categories:
Without any internal or external defects. These diamonds are extremely rare.
Very, Very Slightly Included
At ten-times magnification it is very difficult to uncover any flaws. A diamond of excellent quality.
Very Slightly Included
Flaws are not visible to the naked eye.
Flaws are visible at ten-times magnification and are visible to the naked eye. A diamond of acceptable quality
A diamond of poorer quality.
At ALO diamonds we use only diamonds from SI1 category and higher. We reject stones with minor defects that many other jewelry firms would accept.
The size of a diamond, indicated in carats (1 carat = 0.2 g), is one of the most important deciding features for its price. Understandably, it is not the only factor though. Two diamonds of the same size can differ significantly in price if they have different levels of quality of their clarity, color and cut. A smaller but higher quality stone can be more beautiful than a larger diamond with visible defects.
Small diamonds occur more frequently in nature than larger ones. For this reason the larger ones are also priced higher. The price of a diamond rises exponentially with its size. For example, a two-carat diamond will not be double the price of a one-carat diamond of comparable quality, but significantly more.
If you are deciding on the size of a diamond for an engagement ring, take into consideration not only your budget, but also the size of the finger for which it is intended. A small diamond will look far larger on a slim finger than it will on a larger finger.