How to Buy a Green Diamond – The 4Cs and More

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It is imperative that you buy your diamonds from a reputable dealer that offers high-quality photos and GIA certification. We recommend James Allen and Blue Nile for their selection and excellent customer service. 

Think positive … sounds familiar, huh! But how about 'Wear Positive'!

In a world obsessed with beauty and glamour, something exhibits an aura of positivity, peace, and harmony while still being stunningly gorgeous.

Green diamonds are a divine masterpiece. They are one of the most alluring and intriguing colored diamonds in the family of fancy colored diamonds. In this guide, you will learn how to buy a green diamond. 

How are Green Diamonds Formed?

While the color in most colored diamonds results from impurities in their structure, the cause of green diamond color formation is due to exposure to natural radiation during and after formation.

Based on the type of radiation a diamond undergoes, it can either have a green skin tone or a green body color.

  • Green Skin Tone: The green color is present as the outer layer on the diamond's surface. The majority of green diamonds belong to this category. These green diamonds generally have light green colors.
  • Green Body Color: A green shade is present throughout the diamond's body. Green color penetrating the diamond is a highly rare process, and therefore, finding an entirely green diamond is exceptionally rare.

And in case you were wondering, there is nothing to worry about regarding radiation effects. Green diamonds are safe and do not cause any harm as they do not contain any radioactive properties.

How Green Diamonds are Priced - The 4 C's

There is no 'one formula for all' regarding diamond pricing. Instead, each diamond is assessed individually based on color, clarity, cut, and carat.

Green Diamond Color Grading

Green diamonds' most important quality factor is their color, ranging from faint green hues to vivid, vibrant shades. The GIA has a unique color-grading system for fancy colored diamonds, considering the stone's hue, tone, and saturation.

Hue refers to the primary color of the stone, the tint which appears on the surface; the primary hue of a green diamond is green. Secondary hues that enhance the primary hue or do not detract from it add value as a rule. For example, green diamonds with a blue secondary hue command higher prices than diamonds with grey, yellow, or brown secondary hues. Natural green diamonds with no secondary hues are the rarest and the most expensive as a result.

Saturation refers to how heavy the color appears on the stone. The more vivid, deeper colors are graded higher on the chart. As a general rule, the more saturated the color of a diamond, the more valuable it is. That is why diamonds with pale or faint green colors are less desirable than those with deep and vivid green colors.

Tone refers to how light or dark the color is, with the faintest grade nearing transparency and the darkest leaning to black. The choice of tone depends on your personal preference; however, the stones somewhere in the middle are the most sought-after.

The color grade of green diamonds is assigned based on saturation and tone. The GIA grades for green diamonds are :

  • Faint Green
  • Very Light Green
  • Light Green
  • Fancy Light Green
  • Fancy Green
  • Fancy Intense Green
  • Fancy Deep Green
  • Fancy Vivid Green

Fancy intense, deep, and vivid green diamonds have a deep green color with high intensity. They are extremely expensive and highly desired by diamond collectors.

Secondary Hues

Green diamonds often have a secondary hue that modifies the primary color. The secondary hues are categorized as follows: 

  • yellow
  • yellowish
  • blue 
  • bluish
  • brown
  • brownish
  • gray
  • grayish
  • gray yellowish
  • grayish yellowish

The last color mentioned in a GIA report is the dominant color. The GIA uses an adjective for the color when the secondary color is slight and a noun for the color when it is more apparent. So a yellowish-green diamond is primarily green with a subtle modifying tone of yellow, but a yellow, green diamond, although still mainly green, has a more noticeable yellow tint. 

Green diamonds with blue secondary colors are worth the most, followed by yellow and then gray. In the world of fancy colored diamonds, slight color differences can result in significant differences in the price per carat.

Watch to see one of the world's finest green diamond:

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Green Diamond Clarity

The clarity grading of colored diamonds is the same as colorless diamonds; however, it is not as crucial because the color inside a colored diamond will hide inclusions and flaws.

  • FL - Flawless
  • IF - Internally flawless
  • VVS1 & VVS2 - Very, very slightly included
  • VS1 & VS2 - Very slightly included
  • SI1 & SI2 - Slightly included
  • I1 & I2 – Included

Color and intensity are far more critical factors than clarity. Therefore, you can save money by purchasing a green diamond lower in clarity grade. Green diamonds in the SI1 – SI2 clarity range may look stunning but do not differ significantly from diamonds in VS or even the VVS range.

Since most of the flaws are so small that they are invisible to the human eye, it's possible to save money by purchasing a fancy colored diamond with a lower clarity level, such as SI1. But if you go that route, make sure the clarity level does not impair the diamond's color, shine, or reflection.

Green Diamond Cuts 

Unlike colorless diamonds, green diamonds are not cut to maximize brilliance and sparkle. Instead, green diamonds are cut to achieve the best color possible. So when choosing a green diamond, you should focus more on the stone's color intensity and hues rather than judge the diamond using traditional cut grades.

Shapes for Green Diamonds

Experts recommend cushion and radiant shapes for green diamonds as these shapes enhance and complement the green color of the diamond best. However, pear, oval, and round green diamonds are very popular as well.

Green Diamond Carat Weight

Price per carat is affected in two ways. One by the color – the more intense the color, the higher is the price per carat. Secondly, by weight – the more carats of green diamonds, the higher is the price per carat. 

Rarity and Pricing of Green Diamonds

Did you know that only 0.1% of the total diamonds mined worldwide are classified as fancy colored diamonds?

Natural green diamonds belong to the family known as fancy colored diamonds. They are considered one of the rarest colored diamonds amongst fancy colored diamonds. 

Pure green diamonds are highly desired but are very rare and exorbitantly expensive. The presence of a secondary hue significantly impacts the green diamonds price. For example, a secondary hue such as blue, a rare and valued hue, will dramatically increase the green diamond price. In contrast, a hue such as yellow or gray can make the green diamond more affordable. 

Something else that affects green diamond pricing is demand. Fancy Vivid green diamonds are the rarest and most intense green diamonds, but their price per carat is relatively lower than blue, red, and pink diamonds because demand for the latter is higher.

Green diamonds are coveted by collectors who want to own rare and stunning diamonds without having to sell them again later, as opposed to those who see them as an investment opportunity.

Watch to see a cushion cut vivid green diamond:

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Green Diamonds for Engagement Rings

Found your special someone? Are you considering a green diamond engagement ring? Women who love nature, color, rarity, and a unique look will quickly fall in love with a green diamond. Green diamonds offer a translucent and reflective quality that emeralds can't match.

Green symbolizes health, fertility, good fortune, renewal, and abundance. It combines spiritual balance with a connection to the heart chakra. The peaceful quality of green can soothe the eye and is associated with safety, stability, and endurance.

Green diamonds fit beautifully in gold rings that emphasize their color. In addition, they can be combined with small diamonds in other colors like pink, yellow, or even black to generate contrast in a one-of-a-kind engagement ring.

Green diamonds rank 10 on the Mohs scale of hardness, making them perfect for daily wear.

Green Diamond Metal Pairings

Green diamonds are highly versatile and go well with any metal color.

  • Create a vintage look when paired with rose or yellow gold
  • Green diamonds have a contemporary and stylish look when set in white metals.
  • To enhance the green color of a light-colored green diamond, consider a rose gold prong or bezel setting. Pair this with a diamond halo or side stones. The rose gold setting accentuates the diamond's color, and when contrasted with the bright sparkle of the other diamonds, the green diamond can appear darker.

Engagement Ring Settings for Green Diamond

Green diamonds can be an excellent choice for your engagement. This extraordinary rarity placed into an appropriate setting can create the perfect engagement ring.

  • Halo Setting: Green diamonds can be surrounded by smaller diamonds to enhance their beauty. Adding side stones can help in adding to the ring's carat weight.
  • Tension Setting: In a tension setting, the tension of the band secures the diamond in place, which creates an appearance of the diamond in mid-air. With a tension setting, the green color of the diamond will pop out.
  • Three-stone Setting: By adding smaller white diamonds on either side of the green diamond, its brilliance can be enhanced immensely.  
  • Solitaire Setting: The solitaire setting is best if you want a green diamond to garner all the attention.

Alternatives to a Natural Green Diamond

As green diamonds are expensive, you may find them out of budget. But, there are alternatives to a green diamond.

Lab-created Diamonds:  Lab-created stones are grown or created inside a laboratory. These lab-grown stones are similar to natural stones in all aspects, except they are grown in a lab. Lab-created green diamonds and natural green diamonds are so identical that it is challenging to distinguish between the two. The only thing that differentiates the two is the presence of radiation stain on the surface of a natural green diamond, which appears as green or brown. 

A lab-created green diamond will be more affordable than its natural counterpart.

Treated or Enhanced Stones: Enhanced green diamonds are natural diamonds that undergo color enhancement treatments. Such methods, usually irradiation, transform the otherwise colorless precious stone into a vibrant shade of green. These treatments are typically permanent and do not damage the diamond's chemical structure.

The enhanced green diamond is relatively affordable and a brilliant alternative to a natural green diamond.

Other Green Gemstones

Emeralds are beautiful, rare, and much more affordable than fancy colored diamonds. Also, many more greens are available, from pastel shades to more intense colors. Emeralds rank a 7.5-8 on the Mohs scale of hardness. 

Green sapphires are more durable than emeralds, as they rank 9 on the Mohs scale of hardness. Both gemstones come in colors ranging from light green to deep, vibrant green; however, emeralds tend to offer richer colors. In addition, green sapphires are more affordable than emeralds. 

A demantoid garnet can have a green color that rivals emerald and brilliance that exceeds diamond. As a result, demantoids are highly prized by gem collectors and jewelry enthusiasts. The only disadvantage is its low hardness figure at about 6.5 on the Mohs scale. Best used for brooches, pendants, or earrings.

Tsavorite garnet is one of the most popular and expensive varieties of garnet. The color of Tsavorite can rival Emerald, but unlike Emerald, it often exhibits far fewer inclusions, and on occasion, can be flawless. It is rarer than Emerald, and large Tsavorite gemstones command a high premium. 

Green tourmalines come in an array of greens starting from very light green to the darkest green that can only be seen when the stone is held against the light. You can find green tourmalines in delicate leek green hues, intense yellowish-green, olive green, and brownish-green nuances. And there are beautiful green tourmalines ranging from blue-green to chrome-green to bottle-green. 

How to Purchase Green Diamonds

Here are the steps to buying a green diamond:

  1. Start with budget - diamond pricing varies so much that you will want a budget in place before you start. 
  2. Decide what cuts and shapes you prefer. 
  3. What carat size are you wanting? Anything below 1 carat will be most affordable. 
  4. Go to James Allen or Blue Nile and browse colored diamonds to estimate cost and sizes. 
  5. Decide on a cut or shape and carat size.
  6. Be sure to purchase from a seller that includes GIA certification. 

Where to Buy Green Diamonds

Green diamonds are pricey. If you want to own one, you must purchase from a reliable source. We recommend buying diamonds from reputed sellers who provide GIA certificates and let you see their diamonds in 360 high-definition. Our trusted source is James Allen.

James Allen has revolutionized the way people buy engagement rings and diamond jewelry. They are considered one of the premier diamond engagement ring retailers in the world. With 18+ years of experience, they are the leader in online diamond sales. You can be sure to buy the best diamond at the best price at James Allen.

Because finding a ready-made green diamond is difficult with the limited options available, we recommend searching on James Allen's green diamond inventory and pairing your chosen stone with one of their many stunning settings.

Click here to visit James Allen and own this divine masterpiece!

Blue Nile

Another excellent online seller is Blue Nile. Blue Nile provides exceptional diamond buying tips and unbiased diamond and jewelry education guides. In addition, diamond and jewelry experts are available 24/7 to answer all questions.

Blue Nile stands behind its products with industry-leading Diamond Certification, secure delivery, 30-day returns, and lifetime guarantees.

Visit Blue Nile today!

Share the Knowledge

4 thoughts on “How to Buy a Green Diamond – The 4Cs and More”

  1. With green diamonds acquiring their color from radiation exposure do we have to worry about exposure? I rarely buy jewelry for myself but I have always thought that nontraditional diamonds are more stunning to me than the clear glass looking diamonds. I am amazed in this lesson on what to look for in a green diamond. these characteristics will definitely help me with buying green diamonds and other colored diamonds in the future. Are you aware of other ways to get diamonds that are other colors besides green?

  2. This is the first time ever hearing about green diamonds. When I think about green diamonds I think about green fingers yes I know that’s not what that is. I have always known about jewelry and the four Cs I find it very interesting. Although with green diamonds I don’t think there’s a difference but I could be very wrong. This type of jewelry sounds really pretty and very unique. With that said do I have to handle it differently then other types of jewelry or is it very similar in care? I barely buy jewelry I’m just curious in case I do decide to invest in something so beautiful. This article is very helpful for someone who’s interested in jewelry or likes that of the unnatural types of kind of jewelry. It’s very insightful thank you. 


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