It’s no secret that diamonds are expensive, but have you ever wondered what the most expensive color of a diamond is?The answer depends on whether we are talking about white diamonds or color diamonds.White diamonds are colorless in nature, while fancy diamonds exist in a variety of colors, such as blue, red, pink, orange or green.Let’s take a closer look at the most expensive diamond colors, what makes them so popular, and detail some of the most famous diamonds.
WHAT IS THE MOST EXPENSIVE DIAMOND COLOR?
Red is the most expensive diamond color. However, if you are looking at white diamonds, the most expensive diamond color grade is D.
Colored Diamonds: Red
When it comes to the most expensive diamond color, red diamonds stand above all colored diamonds. The bottom line is that red diamonds are incredibly rare. And pure fancy red diamonds even more so, as most red diamonds have color modifiers such as purple, orange and brown.
Unlike other fancy colored diamonds whose color is graded on a scale from Fancy Faint to Fancy Vivid depending on their color intensity, red diamonds only exist as Fancy. The Gemological Institute of America’s researchers are not exactly sure what causes red diamond’s color. Fancy colored diamonds such as blue and yellow diamonds gain their color from impurities present during their formation process. As for red diamonds, experts speculate that their color comes from changes made to the diamond’s molecular structure.
These elusive red diamonds are found in Africa, Australia and Brazil. 90% of the global supply of red diamonds come from the Argyle mine in Australia. This mine produces 14 million carats of diamonds a year, which also includes pink, white and brown diamonds. Less than 20 carats of certified red diamonds have been sold from the argyle mine as they have a low production of gem-quality diamonds. Furthermore, most red diamonds weigh less than half a carat, with the world’s largest red diamond weighing in at 5.11 ct., a stark contrast to the Cullinan I, which is the world’s largest cut and polished white diamond at an astonishing 530 ct.
The Argyle mine has been in operation since 1983 but is expected to close in 2020 as its diamond supply is running low. With the mine’s looming closure, the value of red diamonds is constantly rising. Even a one carat red diamond can be sold anywhere from $300,000 to $2 million dollars, depending on the quality of the diamond, easily making fancy red diamonds the most expensive diamond color in the world. Rather than being bought by consumers, these extremely expensive red diamonds are mainly bought by collectors and investors.
As red diamonds are by far the most elusive and expensive diamond color, we’ve collected a list of some of the most famous red diamonds:
The Moussaieff Red: Also known as the “Red Shield,” this the largest red diamond in the world at 5.11ct. When found by a Brazilian farmer in the 1990s, this diamond originally weighed 13.9ct and was later shaped into a trilliant cut. This sizable red diamond gained its current name once it was acquired by the Moussaieff jewelry firm for $8 million during the early 2000s.
The Kazanjian Red Diamond: The second largest red diamond in the world weighs in as a 5.05ct emerald cut, believed to be worth over $50 million. When found in South Africa in 1927, this diamond weighed a massive 35t in its rough state.
The DeYoung Red Diamond: This 5.03ct round cut red diamond is the third largest red diamond in the world. This diamond was named after Sydney DeYoung, the Boston jeweler who eventually donated this diamond to the Natural History Museum of the Smithsonian Institution. DeYoung’s company acquired this diamond through an estate sale when the stone was just believed to be a garnet hat pin. Today, this remarkable diamond is estimated to be worth about $5 million.
The Hancock Red: While weighing in at 0.95ct, this Brazilian purplish red diamond became famous in 1987 when it sold for $880,000 making it the most expensive per-carat gemstone ever sold at auction. This diamond was named after its collector Warren Hancock who had bought the diamond for just $12,500 in 1956.
White Diamonds: D
You may have heard of the 4 C’s of diamonds, which are the basics of diamond grading. One of the 4 C’s is Color, and it refers to the amount of color (or lack thereof) that a white diamond displays. Diamond color is graded on a scale of D to Z, with D as colorless and Z as a light yellow. Keep in mind that this color grade only applies to white diamonds. A white diamond with a D color grade is the most expensive white diamond color as these diamonds allow more light to pass through the stone, creating a sparkling appearance.
When buying a diamond, some people may prioritize selecting a diamond with a color grade that’s as close to D as possible. In order to afford a diamond with a D color grade, the buyer might compromise on one of the other 4 C’s such as carat weight or clarity.