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We often hear the expression “diamond in the rough” — something or someone unpolished but with the potential for brilliance after being refined. In the literal sense, however, a diamond in the rough is an unearthed diamond that is still in its uncut or untreated form.
If you’re curious how diamonds look when they are found, this article will describe them to you and answer the question “what does a raw diamond look like?”
We’re all familiar with what do diamonds look like once they’ve been polished and cut because they’re commonly displayed in jewelry cases in boutiques that sell them. They sparkle intensely because they are cut and faceted to look that way.
But what does an uncut diamond look like? How can you tell if a stone you dug up is a rough diamond that’s worth a fortune? While the probability of that happening is small even for minuscule diamonds, it’s still good to know how it looks in its unaltered state.
You should also know that not all raw diamonds are used for jewelry. In fact, less than a quarter of mined diamonds are used in jewelry making. The rest that doesn’t pass gem-quality standards are used in industries like cutting and drilling.
Now that you have some background information, let’s discuss diamonds in the rough in terms of their raw beauty, clarity, shape, size and carat weight, color, transparency, and texture.
While raw diamonds don’t sparkle, they still have their own brand of untouched beauty because of their unique characteristics. They have been subjected to extreme heat and pressure and have come out strong — and that strength is beauty worth admiring.
A raw diamond is considered a valuable and precious stone and its price is based on its carat weight, clarity, and color. Raw diamonds are literally rough and come in various sizes and shapes.
These hard, rough stones have inclusions or blemishes that are easier to see in their rough, pre-cut state. Aside from making them sparkle in the best way, cutting diamonds hides their blemishes. Raw diamonds that are flawless are extremely rare and valued highly.
Since raw diamonds can come in various irregular shapes, a raw diamond with a simple shape is generally more valuable because they are easier to manipulate and fashion.
Size and Carat Weight
Raw diamonds can come in different sizes and carat weights. Size has to do with its dimensions while carat weight refers to its heaviness. The largest raw diamond with the highest carat weight ever mined is the Cullinan Diamond. Discovered in 1905 in Pretoria South Africa, it was 3,106 metric carats and measured 10.1 x 6.35 x 5.9 centimeters.
Raw diamond sizes can go from “smalls” (0.65 carats or less) and “grainers,” (0.66 and 1.79 carats) to “large stones” (1.8-10.79 carats) and “special stones” (10.8 or more carats). The larger and heavier the raw diamond, the more valuable it is.
Most raw diamonds have hues of yellow and orange that are easy to see even with the naked eye. Raw diamonds that don’t show color are rare, so they command extremely high prices in the market.
Colorlessness is an important indicator of value because a colorless diamond exhibits more brightness and is, therefore, more coveted.
Raw diamonds are not totally transparent but are more translucent compared to polished diamonds. You can see into a raw diamond but you cannot see through it. In raw form, they usually look like pale colored glass with hints of yellow or brown hues.
What do diamonds look like before they are mined? Expect a diamond fresh from the mine to be rough and a bit oily. The greasy film protects the stone from the dirt it has been exposed to for a long time under the earth’s crust.
Why Buy At Othergems?
Othergems has over 30 years of experience in the diamond industry. Over the past decades, we have been producing polished diamonds and making them available to diamond merchants and individual buyers worldwide.
We have an in-house team of New York-based diamond experts who can create bespoke diamond engagement rings and other fine jewelry based on your chosen diamond cut, carat weight, clarity, and color. You can also give us your preferred design, setting, and metal choice and we will customize its production for you. Alternatively, you may pick from our vast collection that features a wide range of diamond varieties and jewelry designs from classic and vintage to modern.
Contact us and we will gladly assist you with your diamond jewelry needs.