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How To Figure Out Fancy Colored Diamonds

Fancy colored diamonds are all the rage, but what exactly are they? Are they real? Are they like regular diamonds? And just how do they get their color? Read on to get all the answers and some inspo too!

Fancy Diamonds

In 2021, a new record was set. The largest, most valuable blue diamond was discovered in South Africa. It is larger, has deeper color, than the previous record holder, and this gem is flawless, with the highest color rating available by the GIA. A prize offered to less than 1% of blue diamonds.

The stone took over a year to polish and facet into the 15.10-carat step-cut diamond it is today and now The De Beers Cullinan Blue diamond is valued at $48 million USD.

The De Beers Cullinan Blue diamond

While THIS fancy colored diamond is out of reach for most of us here on the ground, getting your own fancy colored diamond is easier than ever. James Allen carries a variety of sizes and colors to choose from.

So get on board with the trend that is here to stay! From engagement rings to fine jewelry, fancy colored diamonds give that unique, personal edge to your bling. So get ready to sparkle, because embracing color has never been more in style.

What Exactly Are Fancy Colored Diamonds?

Essentially fancy colored diamonds are diamonds that feature a variety of colors. Diamonds normally come in an assortment of colorless options. Meaning that diamonds are either completely colorless all the way to a variety of light yellow.

How Do Fancy Color Diamonds Get Their Color?

While in traditional diamonds color is not desired, in fancy colored diamonds, color is EXACTLY what you want! From dark to light, color is what you are after. So how do they get their color?

These highly prized diamonds, similar to their traditional counterparts, get their color when they are formed. Intense heat and pressure during the diamond’s formation create trace elements that present themselves in a way to create either no color, or for fancy colored diamonds, brilliant color.

The strength of the color depends on the interaction of the trace elements. Whether you prefer a lighter pink or a brighter blue, it’s all about the carbon atoms.

Colored diamonds

The Colors Of The Rainbow

Fancy colored diamonds are available in every color you can think of: pink, blue, purple, green, orange, brown, black, and even red or gray. While traditional diamonds lose value as they gain color, fancy colored diamonds do the opposite.

The stronger the color, the higher the value. Similar to traditional diamonds, fancy colored diamonds gain value the larger the size. The most common colors are in the yellow family, which is great because they are often the most economical choice of fancy colored diamonds.

Fancy colored diamonds

Hue, Saturation, and Tone

Hue, saturation, and tone: what are they and what do they mean? Hue is the main or strongest color of the fancy colored diamond. Fancy colored diamonds can be one color but the hue is the strongest, followed by secondary colors and tints.

Saturation is just how strong the color, or hue, of the fancy colored diamond is. As in, how saturated is the color of the fancy colored diamond. A fancy colored diamond’s saturation can go from “light” to “intense,” all the way to “vivid.”

And finally there is tone. Tone is how light or dark the fancy colored diamond appears and is decided by the amount of brown, black, gray, or white color.

Hue, saturation, and tone all come together to determine a fancy colored diamond’s grade (light, fancy, fancy light, fancy intense, vivid, fancy dark, and fancy deep). Similar to their traditional diamond counterparts, fancy colored diamonds’ value and fit are not determined solely on their grade.

Different strokes for different folks, different grades for different fancy colored diamonds, for different engagement rings.

Engaging Color, Exclusive Style

Fancy colored diamonds are just as real as traditional diamonds and can be used in just as many ways. Fancy colored diamonds are a popular choice, especially for engagement rings and wedding rings. So how do you know which fancy colored diamond is right for you?

Fancy Pink Diamonds

Let’s start with fancy pink diamonds. Fancy pink diamonds have long been a favorite for those who love a burst of color. As part of the rarest of diamond colors, earth created pink (and red) fancy colored diamonds are an extraordinary find, with reports of only approximately 30 being in existence.

Get your very own fancy pink diamond engagement ring with James Allen!

Split Prong Cathedral Engagement Ring

Pink diamond
14K White Gold Split Prong Cathedral Engagement Ring

Fancy Blue Diamonds

Love of color is not specific to pink. Fancy blue diamonds make a beautiful, calming choice. Another rarity, fancy blue colored diamonds are thought to represent spirituality, eternity, truth, and devotion. Getting their hue from boron, with their resemblance of a clear spring sky or a sparkling ocean, it is no wonder fancy blue diamonds are so popular.

Check out this example of a Fancy Blue Diamond Engagement Ring!

Tapered Baguette Diamond Engagement Ring

Blue diamond
Lab-Created 1.37 Carat D-VVS2 Ideal Cut Round Diamond Tapered Baguette Diamond Engagement Ring

Fancy Black Diamonds

Or maybe you wanna go dark like the black diamond ring? Fancy black diamonds have a strong color intensity and sparkle with a metallic shine. These exotic diamonds are a darling of the fashion world.

Found only in a few locations, fancy black diamonds are thought to symbolize love and eternity, making them a fabulously unique way to adorn your finger. Get your own version from James Allen and start showing off!

Petite Pave Engagement Ring

Black diamond
14K White Gold Petite Pave Engagement Ring

Fancy Green Diamonds

Representing life, renewal, and growth, green is a great color for a fancy diamond. Fancy green diamonds are extremely rare, as they are created due to exposure to radiation. The radiation can come from groundwater or radioactive rocks near the earth’s surface.

Often pricier than their counterparts due to their rarity, green diamonds are a lively colorful choice for an engagement ring. And don’t worry, while the stone may get its color from radiation, it is totally safe!

Grande Falling Edge Halo Engagement Ring

Green diamond
14K White Gold Grande Falling Edge Halo Engagement Ring

Looking for another color of the rainbow to make your engagement ring stand out? Check out the many colors of fancy diamonds that James Allen has to offer!

Pros of Fancy Colored DiamondsPros of Traditional Diamonds
Showcase Unique StylePlentiful Choices in Clarity and Cut
Great InvestmentNumerous Affordable Options
More RareClassic Choice

Real Diamonds, Real Fancy

Fancy colored diamonds are not to be confused with gemstones (which also go great with diamonds). Fancy colored diamonds are just as much diamonds as their traditional counterparts.

The advantage is that you can express your personal style in a particularly unique way using color. Check out these examples below or create your own!

And let’s not forget fancy colored brown diamonds, better known as chocolate diamonds.

Bead Accent Pavé Trio Diamond Engagement Ring

In addition to their rarity and value, fancy colored diamonds are extremely popular. At once elegant and trendy, fancy colored diamonds allow you to add an extra level of personal expression. But don’t be fooled by the name, fancy colored diamonds are also good to wear everyday!

Pair with white gold, yellow gold, or platinum, James Allen as a variety of fancy colored diamonds to create the perfect engagement ring. Start shopping today!

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Sarah Chin

Sarah is a stickler for grammar and prefers to use the Oxford comma. She enjoys her career as a writer since being a professional snowboarder/powerlifter/pastry chef didn’t pan out.

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Earth-Created Or Lab Grown Diamonds: Can You Spot The Difference?

We’ve lined up earth-created and lab grown diamonds. Think YOU can spot the difference?

Earth-Created Or Lab Grown Diamonds

Although lab grown diamonds are grown in a lab, they are real diamonds and have the same physical, chemical and visual properties as earth-created diamonds. With this striking similarity, begs the question: Is it possible to tell the two apart? Ironically, expert gemologists can’t differentiate between a lab-grown and earth-created diamond with the naked eye.

As you immerse yourself with our dazzling collection of engagement rings, anniversary rings, and gorgeous fine jewelry, we’ve highlighted jewelry featuring both earth-created and lab-grown diamonds. Think you know which is which? Take a moment to learn about lab grown diamonds on our website, then start scrolling.

Round Lab Grown Diamonds

Do you like to keep things straight-up classic? And by classic, we mean round. Our extensive collection of round lab grown diamonds comes in a range of sizes, starting from 0.5 carats. In the early days of diamond-making, labs were only able to grow small diamonds. However, as things continue to get bigger and better, so has your sparkle. In fact, we’ve got diamond sizes in excess of a whopping 5 carats!

Pavé Halo & Shank Engagement Ring

This gorgeous engagement ring features pavé set diamonds on the halo and along each side of the shank, highlighting the round cut center diamond.

14K White Gold Pave Halo And Shank Diamond Engagement Ring

Presentation Solitaire Engagement Ring

This brilliant knife edge diamond solitaire offers the best of both worlds with its classic appeal at a cost-effective price.

14K Yellow Gold Presentation Solitaire

Fancy Lab Grown Diamonds

Lab grown diamonds aren’t just reserved for those who stick to the traditional approach. We’ve got a wide range of shapes, including oval, cushion, princess, emerald, and more! If you prefer your engagement ring with a pop of color, our fancy color lab-grown diamonds come in a range of options like yellow diamonds, pink diamonds, red diamonds, and blue diamonds to name a few.

Knife Edge Solitaire Engagement Ring

The knife edge design of this ring draws attention to the center diamond or gemstone, showcasing its brilliance without detracting from its beauty.

Petite Pavé Crown Engagement Ring

A vibrant pavé set diamond crown, featuring pavé accents on the prongs and gallery creates the perfect basket for the center diamond. The demure and feminine feel of this alluring ring is enhanced by the petite band.

14K White Gold Petite Pave Crown Diamond Engagement Ring

What’s The Actual Difference?

Have you been able to tell which diamonds are lab-grown? If not, don’t fret. They’re optically and chemically identical to earth-created diamonds. The only difference between the two is their origin.

  • Earth-created diamonds are sourced from below the earth’s surface.
  • Lab-grown diamonds are created in simulated ‘below-ground’ conditions in a lab.

Needless to say, producing the special carbon arrangement of earth-created diamonds is intense. We’re talking high heat and super high pressure. Plus, very few places in the world are capable of producing earth-created diamonds.

Thanks to technology, we no longer need to go digging for our precious stones. Scientists are now able to simulate the required extreme conditions using specialized pressure chambers in a lab. Lab created diamonds are grown from tiny carbon “seeds” that develop in these chambers over months, as incredibly hot gases deposit carbon atom-by-atom onto the original seed. The result? A diamond packing the same quality and sparkle, produced a billion times quicker.

Octagonal Baguette Double Halo Engagement Ring

Alternating baguette and round diamonds compose the elegant and striking inner halo, surrounded by an octagonal frame of round brilliant diamonds. The shank also features pavé diamonds on each side to exalt the splendor of this magnificent ring.

Spiral Tension Engagement Ring

This dramatic, spiraling tension-set solitaire ring allows you to fully view the beautiful diamond. Sleek and secure, it’s perfect for those who like an updated style with a classic feel.

Bang For Your Buck

Lab-created diamonds are generally more affordable than earth-created diamonds, giving you a 30% larger stone for the same cost

Why?

The diamond-growing process is less resource-intensive than the diamond-mining process. It simply costs less to grow a diamond in a lab than it does to mine a diamond from the earth, and those savings are passed along to diamond shoppers. If you’re looking to maximize your budget without compromising on quality and sparkle, lab created diamonds are a great choice for you. 

Bow Tie Channel Set Engagement Ring

This beautiful tapered engagement ring design is channel-set with eight round shaped diamonds.

14K Rose Gold Bow-Tie Channel Set Diamond Engagement Ring

Worth It? We Think So

There’s no doubt that earth-created diamonds contain millennia of history, tradition, and romance. While earth-created diamonds are the classic choice, lab grown diamonds are an affordable option and equally fresh. No matter what you decide, both diamonds hold their magnificent sparkle forever!

Have we made a strong case to go for a lab-grown diamond? If you’re ready, you can pick up a 1 carat lab created diamond starting at around $1,550. However, the price largely depends on its specifications. Remember, the 4 C’s (cut, color, clarity, and carat weight) also need to be considered, as these all impact the overall cost of lab-grown diamonds. 

Lab Created Bling

Lab created diamonds aren’t only for engagement rings. You can choose from a wide selection of lab-created diamond stud earrings and pendants when you shop with us.

Three Prong Martini Diamond Stud Earrings

This three-prong martini setting is constructed to fit the exact size of the lab-created diamonds, which sit perfectly flush into the setting exactly as the Martini design was intended.

14K White Gold Three Prong Martini Round Brilliant Lab Created Diamond Stud Earrings

Halo Diamond Earrings

These beautifully crafted earrings feature a halo of sparkling lab-created round brilliant diamonds that elegantly frame the lab-created center diamond.

14K Yellow Gold Halo Lab Created Diamond Stud Earrings

Kite Set Solitaire Diamond Pendant

This pendant is designed to showcase the beauty of a round cut lab-created diamond. The finely crafted four prong wire basket pendant features a kite orientation to add a twist to the traditional solitaire necklace.

14K White Gold Kite Set Solitaire Lab Created Diamond Pendant

Final Thoughts:

Were you able to tell our lab-grown and earth-created diamonds apart? Here’s the bottom line: Both are winners! Lab-grown diamonds offer equal brilliance and sparkle as earth-created diamonds. That being said, if you’re looking to maximize your budget without compromising on quality, a lab-grown diamond may be calling your name.

Something sparkly catches your eye? At James Allen, we’ve got loads more jewelry up our sleeve. Browse our stunning assortment of wedding rings, tennis bracelets, men’s engagement rings and more to spoil your significant other (or yourself!) today.

Searching for more diamond deets? Check out the articles below to get more inspiration!

Engagement ring catches your eye? Share the love on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, or in the comments below!

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Jarred Maram

Jarred is a writer by day and unofficial office ping pong champion

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Earth Created vs. Lab Created Diamonds: A Guide

Lab grown diamond or earth-created diamond? We’ve got all the info you need to live your best sparkling life with the perfect diamond for you!

fancy shaped diamonds sitting on a pink surface

Lab created diamonds have become increasingly popular and are pretty much the new kids on the jewelry block. Like many new unknowns, people are a little skeptical at first when they hear about lab grown diamonds, but rest assured, they make for a perfect alternative to earth-created diamonds. Let’s start with some basic facts so you can decide with 100% confidence which sort of sparkle sets a twinkle in your eye.

What Is A Diamond 

Diamonds are carbon atoms. When they’re arranged in a very particular structure, you get the tough and beautiful stone we know and love. Producing this special carbon arrangement in nature demands conditions that are intense. We’re talking high heat and super-high pressure. Needless to say, very few places in the world are capable of producing earth-created diamonds.

A variety of loose fancy-shaped diamonds

The Key Difference Between Earth and Lab Created Diamonds

Earth created diamonds are sourced from below the earth’s surface, whereas lab created diamonds are created in simulated “below-ground” conditions in a lab.

To put it simply, their origin is the only difference between these two types of diamonds. 

Technology has advanced to the point that we don’t always have to go digging for our precious stones; we can simulate the necessary extreme conditions in specialized pressure chambers in a lab.

Lab created diamonds are grown from tiny carbon “seeds” that develop in these chambers over months, as scorching gasses deposit carbon atom-by-atom onto the original seed. Lab created diamonds even develop their own unique characteristics (inclusions, clarity, etc.) along the way, and once they’re fully grown, they’re cut into the shape that suits their qualities best.

Several diamond engagement rings with different settings

Factors To Consider When Choosing Your Diamond

Picking a diamond isn’t easy- there’s your budget to consider, your partner’s preference for cut, clarity, carat, and color, and its rarity factor. 

Cost 

One of the biggest upsides to lab grown diamonds is that they’re generally about 30% more affordable than earth-created diamonds. 

Why?

The diamond-growing process is less resource-intensive than the diamond-mining process. It simply costs less to grow a diamond in a lab than it does to mine a diamond from the earth, and those savings are passed along to diamond shoppers. That means that for the same cost, you can purchase a lab created diamond that’s 30% larger than an earth-created one but just as dazzling. 

14K White Gold Seven Stone Low Dome Basket Lab Created Diamond Ring (0.75 CTW - F-G / VS2-SI1)
14K White Gold Low Dome Basket Lab-Created Diamond Eternity Ring (2 CTW F-G / VS2-SI1)

Value

Earth-created diamonds are the classic choice. Lab created diamonds are the fresh choice. 

There is no doubt that earth-created diamonds contain millennia of history, tradition, and romance. They are one of nature’s most incredible products. Drawn from deep within the earth, these sparkling treasures have been proudly flaunted by generations upon generations – paving the way for you to carry on the tradition.

Lab created diamonds, on the other hand, are the next step in diamond history. Technically speaking, they’re brand new. But traditionally speaking, diamonds are diamonds forever. Lab created diamonds give their wearer a unique chance to create new memories. 

Both earth-created diamonds and lab created diamonds hold their sparkle forever, so they’ll be just as beautiful when you pass them on as heirlooms as they are when you wear them on a night out.

14K White Gold Four Prong Lab Created Diamond Tennis Bracelet (1.00 CTW - F-G / VS2-SI1)
14K White Gold Three Prong Lab Created Diamond Tennis Bracelet (3.00 CTW - F-G / VS2-SI1)

Cuts & Colors

Both earth-created and lab created diamonds are available in nearly every shape and color – even fancy colors!

Colorful diamonds, like canary yellow ones, are quite rare. Their shocking hues are caused by trace amounts of non-carbon elements, like nitrogen. By adding these elements to a growing diamond in its pressure chamber, lab grown diamonds take on the same fancy colors as earth-created diamonds.

Good news: any diamond can be cut into any shape. When it comes to diamond cuts, you truly are spoiled for choice!

14K White Gold Four Prong Basket Solitaire Lab Created Diamond Pendant (0.50 CTW - F-G /VS2-SI1)
14K White Gold Halo Lab Created Diamond Pendant (0.50 CTW - F-G / VS2-SI1)

GIA Certified Lab Created Diamonds

Like all earth-created diamonds, lab grown diamonds also come with their very own birth certificate (GIA Certification). 

Since lab-grown diamonds are optically and chemically the same as mined diamonds, they come with their own certification. Today, most lab created diamonds are certified by IGI, International Gemological Institute. Additionally, these diamonds are being accepted and certified by the GIA, the Gemological Institute of America, which has developed sophisticated devices that are used to screen and identify the difference between natural diamonds and lab grown ones. 

14K White Gold Halo Lab Created Diamond Stud Earrings (0.50 CTW - F-G / VS1-VS2)
14K White Gold Four Prong Round Brilliant Lab Created Diamond Stud Earrings (0.25 CTW - F-G / VS2-SI1)

Should You Get a Lab Grown Diamond Engagement Ring

The short answer is, why not? Here are 5 reasons to choose a lab-created diamond engagement ring: 

1: Budget-Friendly

You’re able to maximize your budget and walk away with a bigger center stone for your engagement ring if you choose a lab created diamond. Furthermore, it might not even be about the size of the ring, but more about being able to get the diamond of your dreams for a third of the price. 

14K Rose Gold Bypass Marquise Array Diamond Engagement Ring
14K White Gold Bypass Marquise Array Diamond Engagement Ring

2: The Ethical Choice 

Lab grown diamonds are definitely the more ethical choice and guaranteed to come conflict-free. Their environmental impact is minimal at best, with zero ecological damage since they’re not mined. 

14K White Gold Woven Solitaire Engagement Ring
14K White Gold Woven Solitaire Engagement Ring

3: Stress-Free Shopping Experience

Most online jewelry retailers with customization options, like our very own ring studio, allow you to choose your preferred center stone. That means you’re able to inspect your diamond options (often in real-time), and browse at your own pace. 

14K White Gold Marquise Diamond Accents Pave Basket Engagement Ring
14K White Gold Marquise Diamond Accents Pave Basket Engagement Ring

4: Lab created diamonds are REAL

This can’t be emphasized enough, both lab-grown diamonds and mined diamonds have the same chemical, optical and physical properties. A lab created diamond is not a diamond alternative like moissanite, it’s the real deal. 

A variety of diamond engagement rings on a white surface

5: Unique

Lab grown diamonds are unique in their own right. Not only can they be cut and shaped to your heart’s desire, but they can be cut to absolute perfection. Our True Heart™ diamonds are a premier collection of perfectly cut diamonds, known for their flawless internal symmetry and proportions. 

Choosing the stone that suits your lifestyle is an important part of designing meaningful jewelry that will last you throughout your life. And if you choose to buy either lab created diamonds or earth-created diamonds, you can choose from 1000’s beautiful options at James Allen.

A variety of loose fancy-shaped diamonds on a white surface

Keep up on your diamond reading:

  1. How To Take Care Of Your Diamond Jewelry
  2. True Hearts™ Lab Created Diamonds
  3. Lab-Created Diamonds vs. Moissanite

Subscribe to our email list for access to secret sales, practical ring-buying tips, and $100 off your first purchase!

Jessica Thomas

Jessica feels too much anxiety trying to come up with a cool bio. Read her awesome blog post instead.

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fancy color diamond pink argyle

Fancy Color Diamonds: a Game of Tones

Fancy color diamonds are vibrant and super valuable. “But wait,” you interject, “I know all about diamonds from James Allen’s diamond education page, which says that diamonds are more prized if they have no color at all!”

That is true. And this is also true. Both sides of the spectrum are rare and valued: colorless diamonds as well as diamonds outside the normal color range. As a rule, the value of fancy color diamonds increases with their color intensity. Color is also determined by the diamond’s primary and secondary hues. Although both fancy color diamonds and gemstones have a distinct color, diamonds have the edge because they have fire return. In other words, only diamonds can reflect light with a special sparkle.

Pink diamond

Fancy colored diamonds give engagement rings and jewelry a unique, vibrant touch. Choose from thousands of fancy color loose diamonds to set in an engagement ring or fine jewelry piece on JamesAllen.com.

Find Your Fancy Color Diamond

Discover the colors that rock:

Yellow Fancy Color Diamonds

Yellow is the most popular shade of fancy colored diamonds, chosen by Carrie Underwood, Kelly Clarkson, and tons of others as engagement ring center stones. Fancy yellow diamonds get their color from their nitrogen content. They are often called “canary yellow diamonds,” after the small yellow bird. Yellow diamonds are a beautiful choice, especially for those seeking more affordable fancy color diamonds options.

Yellow Fancy Color Diamond Intensities:

Canary yellow diamond

Shop Yellow Fancy Colored Diamonds

Pink Fancy Color Diamonds

Pink is also a favorite choice for fancy colored diamonds, chosen recently by Cardi B for her show-stopping engagement ring halo and by Blake Lively for her center stone. Pink diamonds are extremely rare. They are often called Argyle Diamonds, named after the Argyle diamond mine in Australia where most high-quality pink diamonds are sourced. Not all pink diamonds are Argyle diamonds — every Argyle Mine Diamond comes with an authentic grading certificate.

Pink Fancy Color Diamond Intensities:

Pink Diamond Intensities

Shop Pink Fancy Colored Diamonds

Green Fancy Color Diamonds

Talk about improving with age — green diamonds are formed over millions of years of beta and gamma ray infusion. As you can imagine, then, they’re among the rarest colors of diamond. Green classically represents growth, nature, and comfort — green colored diamonds convey that all while reflecting light.

Green Fancy Color Diamond Intensities:

Green diamond scale

Shop Green Fancy Colored Diamonds

Blue Fancy Color Diamonds

Blue diamonds are extremely rare and are caused by their levels of boron. Remember that absurdly large Heart of the Ocean blue diamond from Titanic? The diamond as well as its history of being owned by Louis XVI are fictional, but they’re based in truth: blue diamonds have been sought out by royals and nobility for centuries.

Blue Fancy Color Diamond Intensities:

Blue diamonds

Shop Blue Fancy Colored Diamonds

For more colors and cuts: our collection of Fancy Color Diamonds.

Looking for other stones with a splash of color? Read up on Blue Sapphires and Red Garnets.

Obsessed with one (or more) of the diamonds from this post? Let us know in the comments below or on our social channels: Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.

Pin this image to save your colorful diamond inspiration:

argyle pink fancy color diamond pin pinterest

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Tova Kamioner

Tova is a lover of fantastic stories, and although she is skeptical of romantic comedies, she can quote most of the classics by heart.

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