When you think of a diamond, you probably visualize a bright white, dazzling brilliant stone put in a ring. Colored diamonds, on the other hand, have been found – or rather rediscovered – by jewelry makers.
So, do you know what are black diamonds?
While blue, pink, and yellow diamonds are the kings of auctions, commanding exorbitant prices, jewelers frequently utilize black diamonds in their collections. In truth, in many circumstances, these gems do not command exorbitant rates.
That leads us to the following discussion: Are black diamonds inexpensive? What is the source of their origin? Is it the same as being transparent?
Here is some helpful information about these beautiful gemstones.
History Of A Black Diamond
A black diamond is an even older diamond type than a white diamond. Nonetheless, Brazilians discovered it around 1840 and named it “carbonados.” The biggest diamond ever discovered weighs 3,167 carats, making it 60 times bigger than the biggest white diamond.
And stunning black gems have been utilized in jewelry production since the twentieth century.
The majority of black diamonds are extracted in Brazil and Central Africa. And yes, they are natural diamonds in their raw state. To understand where it came from, we must first look at its Portuguese word, which translates as “blackened.”
The white and black kinds are opposed. When precisely cut, a black diamond has the unique property of absorbing light from where its dark hue is. As for the origin of the black diamond, it’s debatable. There are three possible ideas – and gemologists cannot agree on a single version.
According to the first explanation, black diamonds are products of an organic carbon transition. It is generated as a result of Earth’s pressure. However, this theory is undoubtedly false since if it were true, they would be found everywhere.
Related Read: Are Black Diamonds Just Coal?
The second idea holds that the deposits were formed by the impact of meteorites millions of years ago. A uranium meltdown would have occurred. However, this second idea is almost certainly incorrect, as well. The fission energy is insufficient to produce such massive stones.
Finally, the idea proposed by the University of Florida and Case Western Reserve University comes the closest: The diamond’s origins would be alien. The stone had to have originated in an atmosphere rich in hydrogen.
Analyzing a supernova reveals chemical components that are comparable. As a result, a black diamond forms when the supernova collides with the Earth and experiences a high temperature.
Understanding this principle allows you to create a diamond of this hue artificially.
Learn More: Black Diamond Vs. White Diamond: Comparison Guide
How Did Black Diamonds Get Their Color?
Nowadays, most naturally colored black gems are colored by significant amounts or masses of minute mineral impurities such as graphite, hematite, or pyrite that spread all across the stone.
These diamonds may also have a large number of cleavages or fractures that are stained black or have become black due to graphitization. The coloring is caused by the regulation of different internal characteristics.
A natural black diamond’s body color can range from almost colorless to brown or even green.
Natural-color black diamonds are always fully transparent – with a high brilliance that provides the stones with an almost metallic aspect. Since these diamonds are so thickly included, they might be tough and clean.
Therefore, they must be handled and set with extreme caution.
A fine naturally colored black gem, nevertheless, is a stunning stone with a unique appearance that distinguishes it from other diamonds on the market. They are also frequently less expensive than other diamonds.
The majority of black diamonds used in jewelry and rings have been processed to produce the hue, though.
Many start out as gray, highly included, and shattered diamonds that are then treated to a high temperature with low-pressure treatment that graphitizes the cracks and turns them black.
Artificial illumination of none colored diamonds can also result in a dark green that seems black.
Types Of Black Diamond
Did you know that there are three kinds of black diamonds? And in turn, there are three different prices of these gemstones – natural black diamonds, treated black diamonds (preferred by most people when searching for a gem, even if they’re not quite aware of it), and the lab-grown ones.
Now, let’s discuss the distinctions between the types:
Natural Black Diamonds
Natural black diamonds are not the same as other colored diamonds. A black diamond is an imperfect polycrystalline diamond composed of diamond, amorphous carbon, and graphite. Or, to put it another way: Whereas “normal” natural colored diamonds obtain their hue from defects attached to them throughout the initial formation – boron causes blue gems – black diamonds are comparable to white diamonds.
But, how? Well, black diamonds have an exceedingly high number of imperfections, masses of graphite within them, so they look black.
Treated Black Diamonds
Treated black diamonds are ordinary white diamonds often exceedingly low in value due to the significant concentration of imperfections. Because they contain so many inclusions, they can only be used as industry-grade diamonds as white diamonds using treatments like heat or irradiation.
In some ways, “colorless treated black diamonds” would be the more appropriate moniker for these gems. Because “useless” white diamonds are utilized to manufacture this form of black diamond, it is the cheapest sort of black diamond.
See Also: Why Are Black Diamonds So Cheap?
Lab-Grown Black Diamonds
Simulant black diamonds aren’t diamonds in the traditional sense. While some may believe that these are all almost the same, individuals that work with these types of diamonds would disagree. All of them are commonly referred to as fake, although there is a significant distinction between them.
Lab-produced diamonds are, in some ways, hi-tech – and while treated diamonds are far less expensive than conventional diamonds, lab-generated diamonds are still not as inexpensive. The reason for this is that there are a lot of research costs, large and expensive machinery, and human resources.
And that is why, whereas there is a market for lab-made blue and pink diamonds, there is none for manufactured black or brown gems – it makes no financial sense.
Natural pink and blue gems sell at tens of thousands – if not hundreds of thousands – of dollars per carat, while brown or black diamonds cost between $2,000 and $3,000 per carat. Furthermore, like with other high-tech items, their prices constantly decrease as the technology advances.
Lab-produced gems are virtually as cheap as purchasing cubic zirconia and can be found within one click in online shops. You should not buy them if you seek black diamonds – but you should be aware of them and keep an eye out for them.
Black Diamond’s Grading
Despite being rated a “10” on the Mohs scale, black diamonds are thought to be significantly harder than the bulk of colorless diamonds. Thanks to their endurance, black diamonds were utilized for a number of purposes prior to being used as stones for jewelry.
Related Read: Do Black Diamonds Scratch Easily?
Unlike most other colored diamonds, which are available in a variety of hues, black diamonds are only available in one shade – fancy black. Many diamonds, such as fancy red or white, have one intensity grade, while most other hues can have up to nine – ranging from faint to deep.
Colorless diamonds are rated using the same criteria as other diamonds: the 4Cs (cut, clarity, color, and carat) and GIA’s International Diamond Grading System.
Because black diamonds lie outside of this color spectrum, their color is assessed using the GIA’s color grading standard for colored diamonds. Furthermore, as black diamonds are opaque – and frequently highly included – they cannot be rated on the GIA clarity scale.
Similarly, since there is no fluctuation in a black diamond’s color and saturation, only the grade term Fancy black is used. As a result, the GIA does not provide grading reports for these gems.
On the other hand, GIA produces a Colored Diamond Identification and Origin Report.
Despite the fact that beautiful black diamonds do not earn standard color and clarity grading, it is critical to ensure that the color is adequately saturated.
So, when inspecting the stone with the naked eye, be sure there are no noticeable flaws.
When selecting a black diamond, you should also consider the form, which is mostly a matter of personal choice. Black diamonds – like most other diamonds – will come in various shapes, each with its distinct look.
Also, it’s crucial to think about the metal you use for your black diamond jewelry. Because of its striking shade, black diamond pairs well with 14k white gold, platinum, and other white precious metals.
Related Read: Is Black Diamond More Expensive Than Sapphire?
Famous Black Diamonds
The Black Orlov is the most notable black diamond of all time – a 67.50-carat cushion-cut gem broach encircled with 108 white diamonds and strung on a 124-diamond necklace.
According to the myth, the Black Orlov – also known as the “Eye of Brahma” – was a 195-carat unpolished black diamond pulled from the eye of a statue of the revered Hindu God Brahma from a sanctuary in Southern India.
It borrows heavily on the mythology of the Hope diamond, wouldn’t you say?
The Table of Islam, The Gruosi diamond, the Korloff Noir, the Spirit of de Grisogono, and the Black Star of Africa diamond are well-known black diamonds, too.
Some other famous black diamonds are:
- 115.34-carat black Gruosi diamond in the shape of a heart was spotted in India in 1998 and cut by de Grisogono, a famous black diamond cutting expert.
- The 88-carat Korloff Noir gem is currently in possession of Korloff jewelers in France and is said to offer the possessor good luck.
- The Black Star of Africa is a 202-carat Fancy Black diamond. In 1971, this black stone was last sighted in Tokyo.
- The 312.24 carats black Spirit of de Grisogono diamond, cut by an elderly Moghul, is the world’s biggest black diamond. It was extracted in the Central African Republic – but no additional information about the diamond is available.
- The Table of Islam is a large Fancy Black square brilliant-cut diamond measuring 160.18 carats. There’s not much else known about this gem, though.
Learn More: What Is The Highest Diamond Carat In The World?
Is My Black Diamond Real?
The easiest method to tell if your black diamond is legitimate is to examine it by a professional gemologist or lab, like the GIA.
However, if you are certain the diamond is genuine but are unsure if it is natural or treated, there is indeed a method to determine this at home. You’ll need a magnifying lens and a bright source of light for this.
Strong light will travel through the diamond if it’s been augmented, and you may detect perhaps an overall green or blue tinge or glints of green or blue when gazing from different perspectives.
If the black color is natural, you’ll notice a “salt and pepper” effect within it – irregular patches of white and black if you hold it up to the light under extreme magnification. Furthermore, there will be no green or blue undertones.
When acquiring a black diamond, a fair rule of thumb is that unless it’s accompanied with a report from a respected lab, presume that the stone is color-altered or another stone entirely.
Caring For Your Black Diamond
Yes, you should take care of your black diamond the same way you’d care for any precious gemstone. A skilled jeweler will gently wash a piece of jewelry to eliminate all grime and dirt, which is the best technique to polish a diamond.
If you’re cleaning your gem at home, the best method is with a light brush, such as a toothbrush, and mild soap, like dish detergent. Scrub the jewelry gently with the soap and wash with tap water. And for optimal results, dry with a polishing cloth.
Learn More: Diamond Care: How To Take Care Of Your Diamonds
What Are Black Diamonds? Mystic And Fascinating Gemstones
So, let’s sum up this fascinating topic – what are black diamonds?
Most people are unaware of the amazingly brilliant hues in which diamonds can be found. Black diamonds are one of the most desirable colored diamonds.
As a matter of fact, as the popularity of non-traditional engagement rings has risen, the demand for these magnificent diamonds has skyrocketed. Natural black diamonds are distinct from most other gems since they are entirely opaque.
These stones are incredibly precious, stunningly gorgeous, and extremely costly.
And despite the excitement surrounding black diamonds, these stones are less expensive than other natural fancy colored precious gems.
If you’re in love with a black diamond but can’t afford it, there are also some lab-grown varieties and even cheaper types – treated black diamonds.
Related Read: How Much Is A 1 Carat Black Diamond Worth?