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Diamond Fluorescence

Diamonds are Forever...
We focus on facts to ensure you have the information to make the right choices when buying diamonds. Sit back and watch our videos or read our articles to get the whole story. Our impartial advice will help you make the right decision, because Diamonds are Forever...
 

Diamond Fluorescence
What exactly does the term diamond 'Fluorescence' mean?  Definition: A glow which emanates from certain diamonds when exposed to ultraviolet light. What causes this effect? It is caused by trace amounts of Boron in the diamond. Fluorescence is not usually desirable in a white diamond as it gives a hazy effect but it can improve the appearance of diamonds that possess traces of some colors. The most common fluorescent color is blue which can make yellowish diamonds look white or colorless. When selecting a diamond it is best to choose a diamond that ideally has no fluorescent color or is just faintly or slightly fluorescent.

The Effect of Diamond Fluorescence
What is the effect of Diamond Fluorescence or glow? The diamond appears to change color - like a white shirt in a discotheque. Faint or medium fluorescence will rarely affect the color of a diamond but those with a high level may appear cloudy, hazy or even oily, badly affecting the sparkle, and are therefore less desirable. This is an extremely important factor to take into consideration when buying diamonds from a jewelry store.

Impact of Fluorescence on White Diamonds
This is not usually desirable in white diamonds due to the hazy, oily or cloudy effect it has. The scale or grade for colorless diamonds goes from 'D' (meaning colorless - the most expensive diamonds) to 'Z' (meaning dark yellow - the cheapest). The most common fluorescent color is blue which can mask yellowish diamonds so that they look white or colorless in the lighting often used in jewelry shops. Extremely fluorescent diamonds can usually be purchased for 30% less than diamonds that possess no or slight fluorescence.

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Can Diamond Fluorescence be easily seen?
The Fluorescence of diamonds  is not usually noticed by the naked eye but as ultraviolet lighting is frequently seen in dance clubs where the fluorescence, or glow, becomes apparent in this type of environment. Jewelry stores also use this type of lighting.

Diamond Fluorescence Chart / Grading Reports
Many grading reports confirm whether or not a diamond fluoresces, and if it does, the level of the effect - none, faint, slight, moderate, strong or extreme. The strength of fluorescence in diamonds is described in the following chart by specific abbreviations:

Diamond Fluorescence Chart

Abbreviation -  Levels

N, NO, NON - No Fluorescence

F, FB, FT, FA - Faint or Faint Blue Fluorescence

SL, SLB, SLT - Slight Fluorescence

M, MO, ME, MD - Medium or Moderate Fluorescence

S, ST, STB, STG - Strong Fluorescence

E, EX, EXB, EF - Extreme Fluorescence

Fluorescence and Fancy Colored Diamonds
Although fluorescence is not usually desirable in a white diamond strong fluorescence can actually improve the appearance of diamonds that possess traces of color and do not follow the rules described above. Fancy Colored Diamonds are extremely rare and very expensive.

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