Monday, May 3, 2021


By Guest Contributor

and Why Does it Matter?

Wedding photo created by freepic.diller -

It is a known fact that the most desirable diamonds tend to be blue white and that yellow diamonds are frowned upon as being undesirable in purist circles. However, there are some occasions when you might want to give a yellow diamond a second look! Let us take a look at the reasons that some diamonds appear yellow, and what, if anything, can be done about them.

Is It Dirt or Residue?

When diamonds have been kept in a drawer for some time – even if they are in a jeweler's pouch – they can acquire a thin layer of dust which could be simple dirt, or it could contain particles of hair spray or deodorant which are sticky and will attract more dust! If this could be the reason for your diamond's yellow hue, it is very easily fixed with a gentle wash in warm soapy water! Do make sure to put the plug in though if the stones are loose or set into a small piece, you do not want to risk losing your diamond jewelry!

Photo courtesy of Unsplash

Is It the Setting?

Before you rush to condemn your diamond as having a low color rating, check the metal in which it is set. Any hint of yellow in the metal – therefore including yellow and rose gold, but also including white gold which tends to have a hint of yellow showing through unless it is plated with rhodium – will reflect through the diamond making it appear to have a yellowish tinge.

Is It Fluorescence?

All diamonds fluoresce to a lesser or greater extent. The most desirable fluorescence is blue as that removes any hint of yellow from the stone, making it appear whiter and bright, but yellow fluorescence is also possible. This may affect the price of the diamond, as diamonds that do not fluoresce are preferrable, but the yellow tinge may easily be vanquished by merely looking at it in a different light: moving to daylight, or switching off a fluorescent overhead light in favor of a tungsten-bulbed lamp.

Is It the Light?

Further to this, the time of day can also be a factor to consider. During the day, as any photographer will tell you, there are two 'blue hours', usually just before dawn and after sunset, and two 'golden hours' just after dawn and before sunset, when the sun's rays stretch long and warm over everything they touch. Golden hour is wonderfully warming for photographs – but it could have an effect on any diamonds that you are examining under natural light! Other points to consider is air pollution, such as when there have been fires or volcanoes in nearby regions – these can give the light a heavy reddish-yellow hue that can affect the way you see things until it clears away.

Photo created by -

Is It the Color Rating?

The most likely factor of all! Of course, some diamonds are actually discernibly yellow, due to the high levels of nitrogen that bonded with the carbon that made up the diamond. Those rated I or J and below will usually have some hint of yellow about them, deepening as you move through the alphabet to Z – and beyond into the world of vivid fancy intense diamonds, which can have a bright canary yellow color. Check out this diamond color guide by Pricescope to learn more.

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