Are Diamonds Rare? What is the rarest type of diamond?

We talk often of the rarity and scarcity of diamonds, yet a wander down any high street or mall will reveal hundreds of diamonds in a single shop window. If this is the case, how can diamonds possibly be rare?
Like all the finest things in life, the seduction of diamonds goes beyond how many appear available; it instead becomes a focus on process, quality and craftsmanship. It is their seemingly miraculous creation in nature fusing spectacularly with human skill that ignites a desire within us to possess something so symbolic and so beautiful.
Understanding this demanding process and debunking some common myths sheds light on the rarity of exceptional diamonds and may also inform your choices when buying one.

The Formation of a Diamond

How Diamonds are Formed
Natural diamonds are made of carbon. While carbon may not be particularly evocative of rarity, the conditions required for carbon to crystalize is our first ‘miracle moment’ in the journey of a diamond. Deep within the mantle of the earth, carbon must be subjected to intense pressure and heat – only under these tremendous conditions can carbon form the short, strong bonds that give diamonds their unique properties.
The process takes millions of years, during which time other minerals are likely to become trapped within the crystal. Growth defects, the presence of minerals or gasses…there are a host of factors which can have a detrimental effect on the appearance of the diamond. This is just the beginning of the obstacles in finding an exceptionally clear, white diamond that bursts with brilliance and fire. To learn more about the formation of diamonds, click here.

The Mining

If the diamond survives its phenomenal formation, it must then be recovered. Diamond mining requires cutting edge, industrial tools that must be able to tackle the most challenging terrains. The operation is laborious and complex and there is a huge cost attached. After being mined, there is no guarantee that the rough diamonds will be fine jewelry quality. Though not specifically indicative of rarity, this part of the diamond timeline that heavily contributes to their price. The danger of a hand dived oyster, the patience of a vintage champagne – diamonds take opulence to new heights.
Hand Mining for Diamonds

The Cutting

After mother nature has played her part, the skills of man come into play. Cutters must assess the rough and determine the best cut for the diamond – in most cases (particularly when cutting a round brilliant) a great percentage of the rough will be lost. The best cutters will cut for quality rather than carat weight, though the demands of the market and its consumers must be met. This means that in many cases, quality is sacrificed in favour of carat weight – the result of this is a mass of low-quality diamonds on the market.

The Myths

Diamonds are only desirable because of De Beers advertising.
Though the De Beers marketing campaign marks an important moment in diamond history, it is only responsible for setting the conventions surrounding diamonds for engagement. In truth, diamonds were highly coveted for hundreds of years before this campaign took place. Previously reserved for nobility and royalty, diamonds have held prominence for centuries and are now something that lucky individuals have the opportunity to own.
Diamonds are withheld from the market to drive prices.
This was once true. De Beers monopolised the diamond market, stock piling billions of dollars’ worth of diamonds. However, as countries began to end their arrangements with De Beers, the market changed. De Beers stopped stockpiling diamonds over twenty years ago and lost their monopoly long before this.
More people own diamonds than other gemstones because diamonds are so common.
Diamonds are extremely desirable for jewelry. They are the highest scoring gemstone on the Mohs Scale, allowing for daily wear and eternal beauty. Colorless diamonds are elegant, timeless, suit everyone and are more durable than their colorless counterparts (such as white sapphires). The question here is, how many people own quality diamonds? How many people own quality rubies? When we think of gemstones, we must think of them in terms of those stones that embody the unique properties which make them special and rare.

Truly Rare Diamonds

In 2020, you will not be hard pressed to find a diamond. With the tradition of a diamond engagement ring set firmly in our society and a rising number of brides and grooms opting for diamond wedding bands, the demand for diamonds is higher than ever.
This demand, and exploiting the gaps in knowledge of a first-time buyer, inevitably means diamonds seem common place, but the standard for commercial diamonds is low. How do we combat this? How can hopeful buyers find a diamond that is truly rare?
The answer is quite simple – seek diamonds of exceptional quality.
If owning something exceptionally rare is important to you, our A CUT ABOVE® Collection Series diamonds represent the some of the rarest, colorless diamonds in the world.
An A CUT ABOVE® diamond must meet the most stringent set of performance specifications to earn the title, and our A CUT ABOVE® Collection Series diamonds represent an even higher tier. Excelling in cut, color and clarity, these diamonds are the pinnacle of perfection, with only a tiny fraction of the diamonds we assess being deemed worthy of this extraordinary distinction.
Perfect conditions for millions of years, seamless mining operations and an outstanding cut and polish; all of these elements must come together to bring a beautiful diamond into existence…we believe that is something astonishingly rare indeed.

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