Diamond Fluorescence | Pros and Cons

What is fluorescence?

Fluorescence is the visible light certain diamonds emit when exposed to ultraviolet (UV) rays. Diamond certificates define fluorescence by measuring the intensity of a diamond’s reaction to long-wave UV light. The reaction (blue 95% of the time) is visible only while the diamond is exposed to the ultraviolet source.

diamond fluorescence

Photo: GIA diamond fluorescence

Is fluorescence common?

According to the GIA, over the last 10 years approximately 30% of all diamonds submitted for grading displayed some degree of fluorescence. Significantly, the GIA informs us that brilliance is impacted negatively by fluorescence less than 10% of the time. Most significantly, if ‘Very Strong’ fluorescence grades are eliminated from the equation… brilliance is impacted in no more than 1 out of every 400 diamonds.

What is the Impact of Fluorescence on the appearance of a diamond?

GIA studies tell us that fluorescence has no effect on the vast majority of diamonds. In fact, many observers prefer the appearance of diamonds with ‘medium or strong fluorescence, particularly in diamonds graded H color and lower, because they tend to face up whiter.

Impact on value?

The marketplace has decided that diamonds graded ‘strong fluorescence’ are less valuable than diamonds with no fluorescence providing excellent opportunities for informed buyers. Faint and medium fluorescent grades have very little impact on value and in fact make lower colors more valuable.

‘Very Strong’ fluorescent grades should be avoided.

To learn more about diamonds, please visit an Ascot showroom.

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