The Different Types Of Diamonds and Classifications

Diamonds are one of the most popular gems on the market. They come in a variety of colors, cuts and clarity levels. It can be hard to know what you're looking for when it comes to buying a diamond, but understanding the different types will make your decision easier.

What are Diamonds

The rock-forming minerals called as diamonds are made up of carbon (C). The name diamond is derived from the Greek word ‘Adamas’ which means invincible. Diamonds are a natural mineral of carbon and they have been used as decoration and jewelry.

The table below lists out different types of diamonds and their classifications.

Types of Diamonds

Diamonds that are of Type I are usually the most expensive of the 2 categories. They are classified as such because they have high purity. This means that there is a high ratio of nitrogen and carbon isotopes in their composition. Type II diamonds, on the other hand, don’t contain nitrogen impurities and carbon isotopes in their composition.

These two categories can be broken down into 5 types: Type Ia, Type lb, Type IaB, Type IIa and Type IIb.

Type I

These are the most common type and most popular types of diamond in the market. They are mostly used in engagement rings.

Type Ia diamonds will emit a yellow tone because they contain large clusters of nitrogen throughout the crystal lattice. Nitrogen atoms absorb light in blue range, which leads to their characteristic color - orange with hints of orangish hues at times too! This type also fluoresces strongly under UV radiation and IR waves (infrared).

Type Ib diamonds are a type of diamond that is characterized by a pinkish, bluish, or purplish color. The classification is further classified as having a strong pleochroism or interference figure. They tend to emit a stronger fluorescence and phosphorescence than other diamonds.

Type IaB diamonds are yellow to brown in color. These gems have large even-numbered aggregates of nitrogen, which give them their signature trait and hue!

Type II

Type II diamonds are normally white in color. It is the most common among diamond types, comprising 75% of all stones mined. However, they are often low quality diamonds that are unsuitable for jewelry purposes.

Type IIa diamonds are rare, valuable, and typically untreated. They often have an irregular shape that's due to high pressure for longer periods of time in the mine which gives them their unique look from other types.

Type IIa diamonds are the rarest type of all diamond types which makes them valuable to collectors or investors who want their money making potential at its highest point possible.

Type IIb diamonds also have a faint fluorescence and absorb most ultraviolet light that is emitted from their surface, giving them a more reddish appearance than they would otherwise have. They are classified as being very rare due to their rarity of being found in nature.

Types of Diamonds for Customers Lingo:

Natural diamonds:

Natural diamonds are the standard type of diamond. They are almost totally colorless, and they sparkle brilliantly in lights due to their own natural daylight fluorescent glow which makes them stand out among all other stones while still being highly sought after by jewelers everywhere.

They have an absolutely amazing ability to mesmerize you with their colorless, brilliant sheen in even the slightest light!

Man-made diamonds :

Man-made diamonds are diamonds that are grown in a laboratory. It is very popular because they can be made in colors and clarity that are not found naturally. Moissanite is the most common man-made diamond, and it is made by a process that involves extreme heat and pressure.

Treated diamonds:

Treated diamonds are diamonds that have been processed in some way to change their appearance. There are many ways to treat a diamond. One way is by laser drilling the stone, another is by dipping it into liquid nitrogen, and there may even be a treatment that takes place during the manufacturing process.

All these treatments lead to better clarity, color, and hardness of the diamond. However, laser drilling can also ruin the clarity of a diamond too, which depends on the quality of the treatment.

Natural colored diamonds:

Natural colored diamonds can be found in many colors, including yellow, blue, and pink. These diamonds often come from the mines of Africa. Diamonds that are blue or pink are rarer, but they are desired for their vivid color. In contrast, black diamonds happen when carbon is trapped in the diamond's crystal lattice during formation.

The four C's

The four C's of diamond grades is a grading scale applied to diamonds and consists of the following: carat, cut, clarity and color. These 4 grades are used to categorize and describe the quality of a diamond.


Clarity is an evaluation of the type of inclusions that diamonds contain. The GIA (Gemological Institute of America) describes clarity as "the absence of flaws or inclusions, such as gas bubbles and mineral crystals, that may impair the stone's play of light."

Clarity of diamonds is determined by the number of impurities existing in the diamond. The level of clarity does not have any bearing on the value of diamond but can influence how it shows off its color. The less cloudy the diamond appears, the more brilliant it will be. There are 11 grades of clarity the GIA Clarity Scale contains. These are FL, IF, VS1, VS2, VVS1, VVS2, SI1, SI2 and I1, I2, I3.


The color of a diamond is one way to differentiate between the different types of diamonds.

Diamonds that have any hint of yellow or brown spots are considered as 'fancy' colored diamonds and worth less than a clean, clear diamond.

Carat Weight

Carat refers to a diamond’s weight and is divided into 100 "points". One carat is one hundred and eight hundredths a gram. One ounce provides about 142 carats. A 1-carat diamond can be weighed just as many as 4 smaller diamonds but, when all other qualities are the same the larger diamond will definitely be worth more than four smaller diamonds.


Cut refers to how well polished and beautifully crafted a stone is such as whether it has been expertly cut or not. It is measured by the number of facets on each side of the stone. Round diamonds have 58 or fewer facets, fancy shapes have 59-68 facets, and princess cut diamonds have 60-72.

Some common diamond shapes are:

Round Diamonds:
The most popular and commonly known cut. It is a symbol of perfect balance and harmony.

Pear Shaped Diamonds - became very trendy in early 2000's when celebrities started wearing them in their engagements rings and other jewelry. Pear-shaped diamonds look elegant and romantic on any hand, but they are especially great for petite fingers or those who prefer smaller stones.

Radiant Cut Diamonds
- are very similar to the round brilliant cut, with its sparkling brilliance and exceptional fire.

Cushion Cut Diamonds
- are known for their unique vintage appeal that adds a romantic touch to any setting. These cuts can also be referred to as old mine cuts because they are believed to have originated from European mines in the late 17th century.

We hope you’ve found this blog post informative and helpful. There are many different types of diamonds available for purchase, but these are the most popular.

If you are ever thinking of purchasing a diamond, ensure that you do your research and acquire features such as clarity grades, color grades, cut grade and carat weight so that you can make an informed decision. This will help to ensure you get the features in accordance with your budget.