December 14, 2022

What You Should Know About Yellow Diamonds

One diamond color is currently conquering the jewelry industry: yellow. The color is unique, the brilliance is brilliant, and compared to white or other colored diamonds, yellow diamonds are available at affordable prices. You can shop for natural yellow diamonds from various online stores. This article will help you understand more about this type of diamond. 

The color of yellow diamonds

For the layperson, it is difficult to tell the difference between a yellow-cast white diamond and a pastel yellow diamond.

The transition between white diamonds with a yellow cast and yellow diamonds is fluid. Nevertheless, according to the GIA (Gemological Institute of America), it is precisely defined from which pitch a diamond is considered a yellow diamond and which color is still considered a white diamond.

When evaluating diamonds, according to the 4C (color, cut, clarity, and carat), one criterion is the color, which is given in the form of the letters D to Z. D-diamonds are considered the highest quality in color; the color is sometimes referred to as very fine white+.

Diamonds with a yellow tinge start in the GIA color code from the letter M. M to R diamonds are very light yellow in color, and S to Z diamonds have a more intense yellow hue. White diamonds with a yellow cast that do not “fit” into the GIA color scale are counted as colored diamonds. The difference between a white, yellowish diamond and a very bright yellow diamond can often only be seen in direct comparison.

Yellow diamond beauty treatment

Since not every yellow diamond corresponds to the ideal, treated diamonds are offered in addition to natural yellow diamond types. The most common methods of color treatment are HPHT and irradiation.

Colorless, light yellow or light brown diamonds can be turned into bright yellow diamonds by these two processes. While HPHT changes color through high pressure and high temperatures, irradiation relies on color-changing ions. Such changes in the original color must be identified when diamonds are purchased, e.g., in the form of treated diamond, heated diamond, irradiated diamond, or color-changed diamond.

The cause of the color of yellow diamonds

As diverse as the colors of fancy diamonds are, the reason for the color varies as much. The color of yellow diamonds can be explained by inclusions of nitrogen in the mineral’s crystal lattice, which are arranged in the form of so-called lines. At these lines, the light is absorbed, and the yellow color of the stone is created. In this context, the term Cape Lines is sometimes used – based on the name of the first finds of yellow diamonds in the former Cape Province in South Africa.

Natural occurrences of yellow diamonds

South Africa has always been considered the source or deposit in the world where most yellow diamonds are found. When larger deposits were discovered in South Africa in the 1860s, enthusiasm ran high. Yellow diamonds were considered a rarity at the time and were seldom recovered from the then-existing mines in India and Australia. 

Other deposits of yellow diamonds exist in Russia, Angola, Sierra Leone, and Brazil, with the so-called Cape diamonds from South Africa and the Zimmy diamonds from Sierra Leone being traded as the most expensive yellow diamonds thanks to their bright yellow color.

The price of yellow diamonds

When buying yellow diamonds, several criteria are used to set an objective price. They include:

  • color
  • Height Weight
  • purity
  • cut

Yellow diamonds with an intense, pure yellow color with no overtones are traded at the highest prices. Pale-yellow diamonds or grayish-yellow diamonds are of lower value. There is also the question of whether the color of the diamond is natural or whether the color has been corrected or enhanced afterward. Untreated diamonds are considered more valuable.

About the author 

Kyrie Mattos

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