Diamond Art Color Chart

Published by Virtu on

 If you have ever shopped for diamonds for a loved one or yourself, you must have heard different terminologies regarding a diamond’s color grade. All diamonds are graded for their color by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA). The Gemological Institute of America is a governing body dedicated to research and education about gemstones. The GIA grades every diamond for its color and clarity. The color grade scale followed by the GIA starts from the letter D and ends at the letter Z.

You must be wondering why the color grade would start from the letter D instead of A. The reason for starting the diamond color chart with D was to avoid any confusion with other outdated grading systems that used letters like A, B, and C in their diamond color charts.

The GIA-approved color grade scale is divided into categories. The first category is called colorless. Diamonds with grades D to F lie within the colorless category. The second category is known as near-colorless, in which diamonds with grades G to J are placed. Diamonds with grades K to M are part of the faint color category. Diamonds with grades N-R and S-Z are part of very light and light color categories. To have a better understanding of each color category, keep reading on!

Diamond color categories in the chart

Diamonds are valued according to the color grade they receive. Some diamonds are extremely rare and, hence, are the most expensive diamonds on the GIA-approved color grade scale.

Colorless diamonds

Diamonds within the D to F range are colorless. As the name suggests, these diamonds have no color and are the rarest on the market. Their rarity makes them super expensive and the most sought diamonds. However, buying colorless diamonds can be quite heavy on the pocket. For this reason, experts suggest that customers should try to find a diamond that looks visually appealing to them instead of overpaying for a diamond with excellent color grade – a property that can only be observed under the gemological microscope.

Near-colorless diamonds

Near-colorless diamonds have the slightest tinge of yellow or brown color. The tinge is so subtle that one can barely notice it with their naked human eye. The yellow hue in diamonds is due to the presence of nitrogen molecules in their all-carbon structure. The nitrogen molecules absorb blue light and thus, give off a yellowish hue to the diamonds. Near-colorless diamonds are the go-to choice for customers who want an exceptionally appealing diamond but can not afford a colorless diamond. The color difference between many near-colorless and colorless diamonds is barely detectable even when compared side by side.

Faint color diamonds

Faint color diamonds have a more obvious yellow or brown hue visible to the naked human eye. These diamonds mostly work well with rose gold or yellow color jewelry metals. People who are on a tight budget and do not mind the stronger yellow hues usually invest in faint color diamonds.

Fancy color diamonds

Diamonds that emit a color other than yellow and brown or give off yellow or brown colors stronger than Z color diamonds are classified as fancy color diamonds. Fancy color diamonds are even rarer than colorless diamonds, making them the most expensive type of diamonds. These diamonds come in colors like blue, red, pink, green, purple, brown, black, or orange. Red diamonds are the rarest type of fancy color diamonds.


Diamonds are categorized into different color categories on the GIA-approved diamond color chart. The most expensive diamonds fall into the colorless range due to their rarity. Diamonds in the near-colorless category offer the best value for their color and price and are the go-to choice for many customers on a tight budget. The yellow hue in diamonds becomes more obvious as you go down the diamond color chart.

Categories: Jewelry


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