Black Diamond Rings

If you are considering buying a black diamond engagement ring for your future wife there is no doubt that you want to give her a very special ring. A black diamond ring for women could be such a very special ring combined with a somewhat bold message!

You future wife will definitely stand out wearing a black diamond engagement ring. A black diamond has something mysterious and mesmerizing about it. The color black is also associated with passion, certainty, strength and power.

The downside of a black diamond is that you don’t get to have the usual brilliance, sparkle and scintillation that usual diamonds are known for. However, black diamonds have a very glowing luster of their own. A black diamond paired by two white diamonds in a three-stone ring setting can furthermore exude a taste of noble elegance and a certain superiority.

black diamond in three stone ring setting

 

Black diamonds are real diamonds but there are natural black diamonds and treated black diamonds. Whether you prefer to have a natural or treated black diamond will mainly be a matter of budget and how smooth you want the surface of the black diamond to be. I will explain to you why.

Natural black diamonds

A black diamond is basically a fancy colored diamond with a very special midnight color. Black diamonds occur very rarely in nature and in fact they are even the rarest of all fancy colored diamonds. They can only be found in Brazil and in parts of the Central African Republic.

For this reason there are serious scientists that believe that black diamonds have an extraterrestrial origin. According to a study of the Florida International University published in 2006 by Jozsef Garai and Stephen Haggerty the chemical properties of natural black diamonds indicate that the stones must have been formed in a supernova explosion that took place before our solar system was formed. Wow!

Like regular diamonds, black diamonds consist of crystallized carbon but the difference in black diamonds is that the crystalline structure is multi-layered and denser. This crystalline structure of black diamonds is also called “carbonado”. The black color itself stems from innumerable inclusions of iron oxides and mainly graphite.

However, natural black diamonds are very brittle and have a porous structure. For this reason natural black diamonds are extremely hard to cut and polish. Furthermore, most natural black diamonds have colorless streaks which cause surface imperfections inside the diamond. Regarding the light performance the buyer does have to be aware that the light in a black diamond is not refracted but largely absorbed.

Therefore, natural black diamonds rarely look smooth or completely even in their color distribution as you can see in the following instances:

natural black diamondsSuch imperfections are embraced in natural black diamonds as part of their inherent beauty.

Of course, it is still possible to find natural black diamonds which do not have any of these imperfections but they are exceedingly rare and hard to find.

Treated black diamonds

The overwhelming majority of diamonds sold as black diamonds are treated (enhanced) black diamonds. In reality these are just normal low-colored diamonds that are treated in such a way that they become black. There are two ways to do this:

The diamond can either be irradiated so that the structure of the crystals is altered and the diamond turns black. Or a diamond could also be heated to extreme temperatures so that a blackening graphite residue is created within the diamond. Please note that such a treated black diamond is still a real diamond! It has only been treated in such a way that it appears black.

The advantage of buying an enhanced black diamond is that it is much cheaper than a natural black diamond. Furthermore, the diamond structure is not as porous as in a natural black diamond so that you will be much more likely to find a black diamond with a smooth surface:

Treated black diamonds

How to choose a black diamond?

You will have to make a decision whether you would rather prefer to have a natural black diamond or a treated black diamond.

This will be a matter of several considerations. Is it important for you to be able to say that you have a really natural black diamond? And are you willing to pay a high premium price for that? Or are you fine with knowing that you have a real diamond in your hand that was only treated in a certain way so that it looks black? And is it an issue to you that a natural black diamond can be visibly porous and imperfect?

First, you have to know that reputable grading laboratories like GIA or AGS do not issue diamond grading reports on treated diamonds. Whenever you find a GIA or AGS grading report accompanying a black diamond you can be sure that it must be a natural black diamond.

You do have to be aware though that the grading reports for black diamonds are extremely abbreviated compared to regular diamond grading reports. As a black diamond is simply black there is no clarity grade to be issued for the diamond. And because a black diamond mostly absorbs all the light there would be no point in giving a cut grade for a black diamond. Due to its nature it will not have any of a classic diamond’s light performance anyway.

For black diamonds GIA only issues so called “Identification and Origin Reports”. These reports basically contain no valuable information apart from the carat weight. This is a very deep contrast compared to GIA’s usual grading reports:

GIA Identification and Origin Report

As the grading report does not provide you any relevant information I recommend that you go examine a black diamond as closely as you can before buying it: You especially want to make sure that the black diamond is as consistently opaque as possible. Try to go for black diamonds that do not have any transparent spots. And try to make sure that the diamond is not that porous if you go for a natural black diamond.

Where to buy a black diamond ring for women?

Now, usually I would recommend to check out James Allen because they offer high definition 360 ° videos of all their diamonds! However, although James Allen offers a wide variety of fancy colored diamonds, black diamonds can only rarely be found there!

I have found that Leibish & Co. which is specialized in fancy colored diamonds has a wide variety of black diamonds to offer. And in general I think that they are offering good deals. Most importantly, many of their diamonds can also be viewed in 360 ° which is a super useful feature to make out the nature of a natural black diamond! And all of their black Diamonds are natural diamonds. Go and check out Leibish & Co. to see the beauty of black Diamonds.

Black Diamond Rings
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About 

Sebastian Naturski loves to write about diamonds and share his knowledge with his readers.
When he is not working on his website he is studying law at Humboldt University of Berlin.
He has taken part in several international law competitions and likes to broaden his horizons.
His other big passion are languages. He is fluent in German, English, Polish and Japanese and got basic skills in French and Spanish as well.

16 Comments

  1. Hi there. Love the info that you put out there pertaining to black diamonds. Wish I had found you earlier. I bought a 3 stone black diamond white gold ring for my girlfriend. Looks beautiful and she loves it. Only ? Is its a Miadora ring. Wondering about quality and authenticity if you know anything about them?

    • Hi Curt,

      Thanks! I know about Miadora, but I don’t have much experience with them, so I can’t really vouch for their quality. Black diamonds will most likely be enhanced diamonds if they’re not accompanied by a GIA grading report. Although, there’s nothing wrong with enhanced black diamonds, as mentioned in the article as well.

      Hope this helps! 🙂

  2. So I my now fiance got me an enhanced black diamond engagement ring from zales. I love it and its beautiful but I have noticed over the month that it appears to have developed scratches in it which I didn’t think it was possible to scratch diamond. I have read that some enhanced diamonds get their color from a coating instead of the other methods. Zales does not have any of this information readily available. It was real expensive because that really doesn’t matter to me but I do feel a little like they may be trying to pull the wool over our eyes. Do you have any advice on this?

    • Hi Mary,

      It’s actually difficult for real diamonds to develop scratches and it would most likely happen if the diamond is scratched by another diamond. But for enhanced gems, especially those with coating, it’s a different story because any enhanced diamond that’s treated with the coating method will eventually have its coating worn off.

      Unfortunately, I do not know exactly how black diamonds at Zales are enhanced. Maybe you could visit the Zales website and have them answer your query. Then, you can repost their answer in here as well.

      Goodluck! 🙂

  3. Very helpful article.
    I’ve been looking for a black Diamond for my girlfriend but I’m not sure how much I should be paying for one?
    They obviously can’t be graded like normal diamonds, so how do I make a decision if its a good price or not?

    • Hi Mark,
      yes the normal grading criteria do not apply at all to black diamonds!
      Diamond pricing for natural fancy colored diamonds and also natural black diamonds is much more of an art than diamond pricing for white diamonds.
      Just make sure to compare a lot of black diamonds and their prices to each other and you will get a feel what is a good price!
      If you need any more help you can always write me a mail!
      Cheers 🙂

  4. Hallo,
    I did not even know that black diamonds existed. To me the natural black diamonds don’t really look appealing though. I will go for another fancy colored diamond! A black diamond ring for women is a little bit too much I think!

    • Hi Dave,
      I think that it is hard to tell because the black diamond is not accompanied by a video. Some black diamonds at Leibish are accompanied by a video and I would rather go for these because you have a sense of certainty what your diamond will look like. Especially with black diamonds: They might look completely fine from one angle and then somewhat porous from another angle! Although such flaws are part of the inherent beauty of a black diamond it would always be better to know in advance.
      Anyway, if you are seriously considering buying a diamond don’t forget to ask the customer service to reserve it for you, otherwise it might be snatched away from under your eyes.

  5. This post is full of hard to find information on black diamonds. My wife really wanted one and I was not sure because I heard they were not real diamonds. Anyway I got a 3 stone ring with the black in the center. And you are right it is amazing! She absolutely loves it and loves to show people. I did not pick a natural black diamond, the treated one look better!

    • Hi Bryan,
      nice to hear that you have bought a black diamond ring!
      A black diamond ring is really something special because usually it is rather men who get to wear them!
      And going for a treated black diamond is usually also good choice!

  6. After reading your post, I am convinced that black diamonds will make an outstanding engagement ring for the special person in my life. The fact that black diamonds are rare and the most common type sold are treated, purchasing a real nature black diamond is better than the white diamonds sold in most jewelry stores.

    • Hi Tony,
      well I would not necessarily say that a real natural black diamond is better than a white diamond just because it is rarer. But it is definitely much more special! Usually black diamonds are put into mens’ rings and therefore, a black diamond ring for women will definitely stand out!
      If you go want to go for a natural black diamond, take lots of time viewing all the possible options and comparing them to each other. Although certain flaws as described above are an inherent part of a black diamond’s beauty it’s always the best to choose a black diamond with the least amount of such typical flaws.

  7. Hi, I was looking around the internet for a black Diamond and came across your site. I never knew that they did actually occur naturally, I thought that they were all treated. Although I think she will have to make do with a treated one looking at the costs. Thanks. Ian.

    • Hi Ian,
      natural black diamonds are not only a matter of money but also of taste. Most natural black diamonds have some visible “flaws”. These “flaws” are to be expected though in a natural black diamond and contribute to its beauty. If natural black diamonds are beyond your budget you will be doing fine with treated black diamonds.

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