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All About Diamond Fluorescence

I get asked about diamond fluorescence all the time. Is it good, is it bad? What about lower color grades benefiting from it but not higher color grades? The reason for this mild panic is due to the somewhat controversial nature of diamond fluorescence.

Long ago, colorless diamonds that had blue fluorescence were once referred to as “blue white” diamonds. This was a marketing term used to describe colorless and near colorless diamonds that emitted a blueish appearance in regular UV daylight. At the time, these diamonds were preferred and everyone wanted a diamond of this quality and added personality. As you can imagine, these diamonds were sold at a premium price for their “extra beauty”, but overtime vendors and salespeople started to take advantage of this term and sold diamonds that weren’t necessarily high in quality but still had blue fluorescence (consequently, this is kinda what is happening to hearts and arrows diamonds now) . This lead to the Federal Trade Commission of the USA banning the use of the “blue white” description forever and thus most people in the trade still deem diamonds with very strong to medium fluorescence as a negative quality.

This is how and why blue fluorescence in diamonds got a bad rap. Now, the diamond market as well as the public’s general perception of blue fluorescent diamonds is somewhat negative but this is unfounded in reality. About a 1/3 of all diamonds have a degree of blue fluorescence as part of their natural formation which can have a positive affect in making them appear “whiter” than their true color grade when exposed to UV elements. This is especially true for diamonds that fall in the lower color grades of I, J, or K.

BGD Signature Blue Diamonds


However, higher color grade diamonds with medium to strong blue fluorescence don’t necessarily have any negative side affects from the natural characteristic. It’s just that each and every diamond must be evaluated on it’s own merit.

What To Look For In Very Strong Blue Fluorescent Diamonds

Diamonds with very strong blue fluorescence may display an ugly ”milky white’ or cloudy looking appearance when exposed to UV rays (natural daylight for example). In these diamonds, they loose their transparency and become a bit ‘yuck’. So, if you are ever considering a very strong blue fluorescent diamond it is always wise to view the diamond from all angles in different light settings to ensure that it shows no negative side affects from the fluorescence. If you are using ODBA’s Diamond Search and come across an ideal cut diamond that has strong or very strong blue fluorescence it’s always a good idea to contact the vendor and ask them to confirm how the diamond looks in different light.

However, don’t be alarmed as many strong and very strong blue fluorescent diamonds show no negative affects whatsoever. And I would encourage anyone who is looking to save some extra cash to look into Brian Gavin’s Signature ‘Blue’ diamonds as these have been hand selected and evaluated to ensure they are nothing but perfectly brilliant.

If you were interested in hearing the history on the Brian Gavin Blue Signature Diamond, listen to the man himself discuss what blue fluorescent diamonds mean to him:

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