What are Fancy Color Diamonds?
Normally, a diamond or white diamond has a chemical and physical composition that makes it perfectly transparent with little to no color or hue. However, fancy color diamonds are diamonds that exhibit color beyond the white color range and come in every color of the spectrum. These include yellow and brown diamonds that exhibit color beyond the Z diamond grading range, as well as blue, green, pink, purple, orange, and red diamonds.
How are Fancy Color Lab-Grown Diamonds Created?
The creation process of fancy colored diamonds is the same for both colored mined diamonds or colored lab-grown diamonds. Like with colorless diamonds, fancy color diamonds are also created in the laboratory by simply replicating the processes found in nature to create beautiful diamond colors. Fancy color lab-grown diamonds are created using the same process of lab-grown colorless diamonds. The process uses either high-temperature high-pressure (HPHT) or chemical vapor deposition (CVD) to create diamonds that are chemically and physically identical to their below-earth, natural counterparts.
Depending on the color, hue, and saturation, fancy color diamonds get their color in different ways. For example, pink and green diamonds have their colors inserted after formation via irradiation, blue diamonds get their color from exposure to boron, while fancy yellows are formed by Nitrogen.
Natural vs. Lab-Grown Fancy Color Diamonds
Lab-created fancy color diamonds come in a vast variety of hues and shades. The most common being yellow and pink, while red and blue are still relatively rare. Irrespective of the color and rarity, fancy color lab-grown diamonds look, sparkle, and luster identical to their natural counterparts.
So, what are the differences? Well, the biggest and most important is price. Since fancy color diamonds are rare and valuable, earth-mined fancy color diamonds are extremely expensive. Choosing lab-created fancy color diamonds is a more value for money and conflict-free alternative. For example, an earth-mined 1.12-carat heart-shaped fancy vivid pink diamond would be priced between $550,000-$600,000. In comparison, a 1.45-carat fancy vivid pink, heart-shaped, lab-grown diamond only costs approximately $10,000-$15,000!
Another advantage of man-made fancy colored diamonds is that they come in a wider variety of unique hues and shades as compared to their earth-mined alternatives. This is because it is far easier for scientists to experiment in the controlled setting of a lab; than it is for Earth to naturally produce such colors. Therefore, customers that buy lab-grown fancy stones can be selective in choosing not only their desired color but also their preferred saturation and shade.
Benefits of Fancy Color Lab-Grown Diamonds
Price is the most obvious and most important benefit of fancy lab-grown diamonds as compared to fancy natural diamonds. However, there are several other benefits of choosing lab-created fancy color diamonds:
Ethical - Lab-created diamonds are made by recreating the conditions under the earth’s surface in a laboratory. By growing these diamonds in a controlled and traceable environment, it is possible to track where these diamonds come from. With mined diamonds, there can be a risk of blood diamonds, child labor, and other unethical conditions. Lab-grown diamonds guarantee ethically responsible, conflict-free diamonds.
Environmental - Lab-created diamonds are far more environmentally sustainable than earth-mined diamonds. This is because mining displaces large amounts of soil and consumers a lot of energy. It takes lesser energy and requires lesser water to produce a diamond in a lab than to extract it from the earth. Lab-grown diamonds also do not require the displacement of millions of tons of earth.
Quality - Lab-created diamonds are generally purer than mined diamonds. Naturally occurring diamonds are ingrained with impurities. However, the impurities in man-made diamonds can be controlled or eliminated in the lab. This gives them improves diamond clarity and quality.
Are Fancy Color Diamonds Rare?
Only 1 in 10,000 diamonds has a fancy color. The most valuable fancy color diamond hues are pink, blue, and green. The rarest, however, are red diamonds, with only a handful actually known to exist.
Rarity and Valuation: How are Fancy Color Diamonds Valued?
In diamonds, rarity equals value. With colorless diamonds in the normal range, value is based on the absence of color, because colorless diamonds are the rarest. But with fancy color diamonds, color is the dominant value factor. The rarest and most valuable colors are saturated pinks, blues, and greens. In all cases, even very slight color differences can have a big impact on value.
For example, fancy yellows and browns are less rare as compared to diamonds with noticeable hints of other hues. Saturation plays a role in other colors such a blue and green diamonds.
Red, green, and blue diamonds with medium to dark tones and moderate saturations are extremely rare and thus, very valuable.
Grading Fancy Color Diamonds
Since color is the most important factor while valuing fancy color diamonds, grading of these diamonds is also based primarily on color and saturation. Even diamonds with numerous inclusions that result in a low clarity grade have high valuations if they display attractive face-up color.
Grading fancy color diamonds is complex and specialized. The Gemological Institute of America (GIA)’s system for color-grading fancy color diamonds is designed to accommodate the fact that not all colored diamonds have the same depth of color. For example, yellow diamonds occur in a wide range of saturations, while blue diamonds do not.
Hues of Fancy Color Diamonds
Reds & Pinks- Diamonds with red or reddish colors are extremely rare and highly valued. Pure pinks are more popular than diamonds that are purplish, orangy, brownish, or grayish. Fancy pinks are available in a range of shades since these lab-grown pink diamonds do not receive their color during the growing process. The pink color is inserted via irradiation and annealing, a process that occurs once the diamonds are formed. The saturation of the pink inserted can, therefore, be controlled.
Blues- Fancy blue diamonds are also extremely rare. They generally have a slight hint of gray, so they’re rarely as highly saturated as blue sapphires. Their color is caused by the presence of boron impurities—the more boron, the deeper the blue. Lab-grown fancy blues come in different shades, determined by the stones’ exposure to boron. These stones are often marketed as “rose-colored,” or stones with purplish tints as “mauve” diamonds.
Greens- Fancy green diamonds are typically light in tone and low in saturation. Their color often appears muted, with a grayish or brownish cast. The hue is generally in the yellowish-green category. In most green diamonds, the hue is confined to the surface and rarely extends through the entire stone. Green diamonds get their color when radiation displaces carbon atoms from their normal positions in the crystal structure. This happens naturally when diamond deposits lie near radioactive rocks, or artificially as a result of treatment by irradiation.
Yellows- Fancy yellow is the second most common fancy color. Yellow lab-grown diamonds are available in a variety of hues (from pale yellow to vivid yellow) and come in different shapes and sizes. These diamonds get their yellow color from Nitrogen. The amount of Nitrogen is controlled in a laboratory environment to get the desired and distinguished shade of yellow. Orange lab-grown diamonds come from exposure to the solvents used in the growing process.
Browns- Brown is the most common fancy diamond color. Brown diamonds were typically been considered good only for industrial use but have recently been marketed as “cognac” or “champagne” for jewelry use. Brown diamonds range from very light tones to dark hues with a warm and golden appearance, and sometimes show hints of green, yellow, orange, or red modifying colors.
Blacks, Whites & Grays- Until recently, there was not much demand for black diamonds but both fine jewelry and high fashion designers have started using them in jewelry, especially in contrast with tiny colorless diamonds in pavé settings.
There are also fancy white diamonds that are milky white in color and often cut to display beautiful opalescent flashes of color. Gray diamonds, containing a high level of hydrogen as an impurity element, which probably causes their color, also exist.
Celebrities Spotted in Fancy Color Diamonds
Due to their rarity, value, prestige, and beauty, it is no surprise that fancy color diamonds are extremely sought after by the rich and famous. Many celebrities opt to wear high-value and unique fancy color diamonds over colorless diamonds. For instance, J.Lo was spotted in a pair of 16-carat yellow-diamond Harry Winston earrings for the Golden Globes Awards in 2016; while Kate Winslet wore a gorgeous yellow diamond necklace by Tiffany & Co to the Oscars Red Carpet. Victoria Beckham has also been seen styling a large emerald-cut fancy yellow diamond, set on a triple band of yellow gold. Blake Lively’s engagement ring is a 12-carat light pink flawless oval-cut diamond designed by Lorraine Schwartz.
Many more famous actors, musicians, artists, and industrialists around the world have been joining the trend of rocking rare fancy color diamonds.
Looking to join the trend? Interested in owning such unique and valuable gemstones? Contact us.
We love how beautiful fancy colored diamonds look but we also know the huge amounts they cost. Our lab-created fancy color diamonds offer a perfect, balanced solution to those who looking to invest in unique and rare-looking diamonds without having to pay exorbitant prices.
By ensuring our diamonds are identical in every way to earth-mined fancy color diamonds, we aim to offer a rare option and exclusive opportunity to our customers. Our fancy color lab-grown diamonds come in a vast variety of colors, shapes, and sizes. Contact us to know more.