The 6Cs of Sapphire: A New Standard for Determining Sapphire Quality
First, let us start up understanding the 4Cs of diamonds, upon which the 6Cs of sapphires are based. The 4Cs refer to the Colour, Clarity, Carat, Cut of the gemstone. Which was devised by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), and it is the official standard with which diamond quality is measured. These four elements are used to determine the quality of the gemstone, which in turn reflects on the price of the gemstone. However, when it comes to determining sapphire quality, we at Brilliyond have determined two other key factors that determine the quality of sapphires. They are the Country of origin and Curing. As a first step here’s a quick overview of the 4Cs of the diamonds, for these 4Cs also apply to Sapphires, in similar but different ways.
The Colour of the diamond; in the case of the popular, colourless variety, refers to the absence of colour in the gemstone. which is seen as a maker of higher quality. For the more colour (or yellowish shade) that the stone has, the less glow and glitter it has. Starting with the colour, where the principle is reversed in sapphires. Unless we are talking about fancy coloured diamonds, when it comes to sapphires the more colour: higher saturation, vividness the better. This is why blue sapphires which have higher levels of colour concentration, like cornflower blue sapphires, and royal blue sapphires are amongst the most popular.
Clarity of the stone refers to the absence of external inconsistencies known as “blemishes” and internal ones, known as “inclusions”. Which result from the high heat that diamonds are subjected in the course of their long development history, from carbon. Fewer the number and extent of blemishes and inconsistencies the higher the value of the gemstone. Clarity is equally important in sapphires, as this variety of gemstones also include inclusions like diamonds. Depending on the quality of the stone the sapphire that has fewer inclusions will command a higher price.
Cut of the diamond is the type of cut that the diamond has been subject to. There is a variety of diamond cuts out there. Princess and Cushion Cut being among the most popular types. It is important to know that a well-cut diamond can command a higher price, even if other elements of the diamond are not up to the mark. When it comes to Cuts, the popular diamond cuts are also applicable for sapphires. However sapphires tend to dominate certain gemstone cuts: Notably, the round, oval, and halo being amongst the most popular. However, even a sapphire that has a higher number of inclusions, if it has the benefit of a great cut, then it may well overcome limitations in other areas of the gemstone.
Carat of the diamond refers to the weight stone. A carat equals 200 milligrams. Larger the carat of the gemstone the higher its value. Which is one of the reasons why people when often go smaller stones, or seek to combine one or two smaller carat diamonds to produce a larger effect. The principle of higher the carat the more valuable the stone also applies to sapphires. Higher carat sapphires that have good colour and clarity can sometimes command the value of even high-value diamonds.
The Country is the 5th C of Sapphires. A feature, as the name implies, pertains to the country of origin of the sapphire stone. Since sapphires are sourced from many parts of the world, the country of origin has a considerable effect on the character, quality of the sapphire. When it comes to the world’s top sapphire destinations, a few countries stand out. Notably Thailand, Myanmar, India (Kashmir) historically, and Ceylon. We at Brilliyond specialise in providing top-quality natural Ceylon sapphires. A country that has a rich history in providing world-class sapphires, and most renowned for its top blue sapphires. The rich heritage in the gem trade, the quality, notably high colour saturation of Ceylon gemstones ensures that this type of sapphires stands out from the rest.
Curing is the process through which sapphires are treated. And the main form of sapphire treatment is heating. Heating gemstones is a trusted process for improving the colour and character of the stone. Whilst heat treatment is a widely adopted practice in many parts of the world, not all countries carry out this process in an authentic way. For one must understand that heat treating a gemstone (Curing) is not a way of altering the character of the sapphire. For there are other unethical or potentially illegal methods of changing the character of the stone. Brilliyond only trades in sapphires which are carefully heat-treated in the long tradition of Cured Ceylon sapphires.