Many websites give information on the 4 C’s, but there is much more to choosing your perfect diamond than the almost outdated Carat Weight, Clarity, Color and Cut grading and pricing systems. Yes, it is important to have a working knowledge of the 4 C’s, but please consider Shape, Transparency and Treatment Status of the diamond you are choosing as well.


First establish a budget and choose the diamond Shape you prefer. At Mark Schneider Design, we offer a variety of different shapes: Ideal Cut Round diamonds, Square and Rectangular diamonds such as the Princess, Radiant, Emerald, Cushion and Asscher, Pear, Oval and Marquise shapes. Choice of diamond shape is as individual as personality but is also influenced by fashion and style.


Secondly understand the 4 C’s. Cut meaning cut quality: A well cut diamond should be a priority as only a well cut or Ideal cut diamond will maximize brilliance and light return to the eye. Gemological Institute of America grades diamond cut quality as Excellent, Very Good, Good, Fair and Poor. At Schneider’s we specialize in perfectly proportioned diamonds; making sure that your diamond will offer maximum light return.


Color refers to the body color of the diamond when compared with other diamonds. Color will affect the price of the diamond. Diamonds that are truly colorless (D through F) will command the highest prices per carat. The near colorless, warmer tones, (G through J) are more affordable and look great in yellow gold, white gold and platinum settings.


Clarity refers to the number, shape and type of natural inclusions that may be found in the diamond. These inclusions may be eye visible (I1 I2 I3) or only visible under 10x magnification, (SI2 grading through VVS1). If there are no inclusions visible under 10 x magnification the diamonds will be graded IF or F for flawless.


Carat Weight. Size matters only when it comes to pricing a diamond. Diamonds are sold by carat weight; their actual weight on a scale in carats. Obviously the larger the diamond, the more it will weigh and the higher the price will be.


Transparency is the degree to which a diamond can transmit light. Diamonds can range from transparent to semi- transparent to translucent to opaque, as is the case with black diamonds.


Treatment. With so many gemstone treatments on the market; it is difficult for the untrained eye and without the proper equipment to establish whether a diamond is natural or has been enhanced for clarity and/or color.

At Mark Schneider’s we believe in selling natural, untreated diamonds for the most important occasions in your life, and after 65 years in the business, we protect our integrity and consider it our most important asset. We pride ourselves in teaching you about diamonds, helping you to make an informed diamond decision and we help you choose your diamond loose, under the correct lighting and grading conditions. We show you comparison stones and encourage you to “Buy your Diamond the Right Way,” the same way professional diamond buyers do.