Naturally Colored Diamond Facts: Yellow Diamonds

Nov 9, 2017 | Things to Know, Yellow Diamonds

Colored diamonds make up an extremely tiny fraction of all the diamonds ever mined. Approximately, 1 out of 10,000 carats mined is colored. Values for colored diamonds can run into the millions, whether they are loose or mounted in jewelry. Of these colors, yellow is perhaps the most common category, so let’s dig into some facts about these magnificent stones.

yellow diamonds

Why Are They Yellow?

Yellow diamonds get their color from nitrogen impurities in their molecular structure. Nitrogen atoms scattered throughout the stone’s body absorb blue light, allowing only its complementary color to radiate, yellow.

What Is A Canary Diamond?

A Canary Diamond is a name given to yellow stones of “elite” status. According to the GIA, these diamonds belong to a specific classification of Fancy and Vivid yellow hues. The saturations and brilliance of these gems resemble the bright rich color of a canary’s beautiful feathers.

What Is The Most Common Color Modifier?

It is common knowledge that colored diamonds frequently contain more than one hue. In the case of yellow diamonds, the most common color modifier and/or undertone is brown. This combination will receive price discounts as opposed to a pure, intense yellow gem.

Other combinations include orangish yellow and greenish yellow diamonds. Generally speaking, natural yellow diamonds with a second color are often worth less than pure natural yellow diamonds. In the case of orange modifiers, prices might see appreciation.

The Most Famous Mine?

While yellow diamonds can be found almost everywhere around the world, the mine responsible for the highest quality stones of this category is the Zimmi Mine in Sierra Leone. The yellow gems produced by this mine have such saturation and clarity, they can often fetch 2x the price of vivid yellows of other mines.

An Affordable Investment?

If you’re in the market to purchase a colored diamond, yellow diamonds may be a good choice as they are more affordable than other colored diamonds, (all other things being equal). This is mainly due to rarity and not quality. Like we mentioned above, yellow is among the most common colored stones, however don’t let this fool you. Sometimes a pure Fancy Yellow, high carat diamond can yield quite respectable prices.

Just like all naturally colored diamonds, yellow diamonds are graded on their 4Cs, referring to their cut, clarity, color, and carat weight.

Are There Any Famous Yellow Diamonds?

Absolutely! Most were actually massive as well.

Yellow diamonds are an amazing asset for whoever is fortunate enough to have one. Whether you are looking to invest in colored diamonds, or collect them for their beauty, yellow diamonds prove to be a highly desirable item. With no end in sight, expect to see the value of yellow diamonds continue to swell in the coming months and years.

If you found these facts interesting and what to dig a bit deeper into the world of yellow diamonds, you might want to check out our detailed tribute to these remarkable stones. Click here for Part 1 and Part 2.

For more reading on colored diamonds, see the links below:

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