What is the birthstone for April?
The April birthstone, like those who are born in April, is a clear, strong, impressive gem with a classic sparkle: the diamond. They grab your attention on all occasions; when polished and cared for properly, diamonds become something extremely valuable and completely unique.
A love affair that goes way back
Diamonds are legendary in our culture and have been for millennia. The name "diamond" itself is derived from the ancient Greek "adamas", meaning "unbreakable" or "untamed";
We have long had a good understanding of the power and durability of diamonds, and the role of diamonds has not diminished over the centuries as humans have mined and used them for decoration and worship.
It is believed that the first use of diamonds as precious gems was in ancient India, where diamonds were collected and used for religious icons. Prior to that, diamonds were treasured for their use as engraving tools, as their unbreakable nature allowed ancient peoples to engrave heavy stones.
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The hardest material on earth
Diamonds are rated a 10 on the Mohs hardness scale, denoting that they are the hardest material known to man.
Diamond is unbreakable, unscratchable, and unbeatable in terms of durability - to shape diamonds into the myriad cuts and complex facets we know today, professional jewel smiths must utilize powerful lasers or immense physical force combined with a sharp metal blade.
To polish diamonds, diamond powder is used to refine the surface and buff it to an impenetrable flat surface.
Because of their high refractive index, diamonds are really shining under the light. Large-sized diamonds can be extremely valuable.
The 4 C's of diamonds
Diamonds are graded by jewelers and connoisseurs on 4 values, known as the "Four C's": cut, color, clarity, and carat.
April birthstone color
The color of the diamond varies from white to black, including colorless, pink, yellow, red, blue, gray or salt and pepper diamond. Among all of them, colorless ones are particularly preferred.
The variations in color are a result of inclusions in the diamond's structure. This is the main reason why many diamonds are yellowish.
They can be transparent, translucent, or opaque.
The clarity of a diamond is its transparency or the ease of looking completely through the gem, also a result of the lack of inclusions in the diamond.
Finally, the carat - the size of the gem - determines its final grading score, and different carats suit different settings and tastes.
April birthstone pricing
For a 1-carat diamond, you can expect to pay between $4,000 and $9,000 (the average price is around $5,500), depending on its qualities and origin. In general, experts prefer larger, colorless diamonds with a fine cut.
The value of a diamond is not only monetary but sentimental. The allure of a diamond is deeply rooted in our culture, dating back millennia in our love affair for something that outlasts civilizations.
Gifting a diamond to someone is a powerful symbol of your commitment, your belief in the everlasting nature of your bond, and a way to show her or him that your love is as strong as the gemstone.
The person you want to give a diamond to could be yourself; for the ultimate act of self-love, give yourself a reminder that you are unbreakable. This jewel is the perfect gift for anyone who deserves something memorable and timeless.
The diamond jewelry industry was valued at $80 billion USD in 2019. Your diamond may contribute a varying amount to this based on its 4 C's as well as market trends in your area.
Mining sites of the April birthstone
Diamond mines today are located all over the world, but the world leaders in diamond production are Russia, Canada, Botswana, South Africa, and Angola. These countries produce over one million carats of diamonds per year!
Regarding top pink diamonds, almost all of them are produced in Argyle, Australia. And even in Argyle, only 50 to 60 pink diamonds each year are able to be sold at auctions, i.e. Argyle Tender. According to current reserves, fewer than 500 pink diamonds can reach that level in the future.
Unethical sourcing makes lab-created diamonds a popular alternative
Diamond mining is a hot topic in news, and has been for decades; this is primarily due to the unethical sourcing of diamonds (also called "blood diamonds" or "conflict diamonds") in areas afflicted by war.
These conflict diamonds are often used to fund violent activities in regions like Sierra Leone, Angola, Ivory Coast, and Guinea.
While it is estimated that ninety-nine percent of diamonds on the market are conflict-free (and many have a pedigree to certify this), a lot of diamond buyers prefer to source their jewelry secondhand or from laboratories.
Synthetic diamonds are a popular alternative to traditional, natural diamonds for those concerned with fair trade sourcing and ethical consumption.
Even though synthetic diamonds are generated in a lab under artificial conditions, they are indistinguishable from natural diamonds without the aid of an experienced jeweler.
In general, lab-created diamonds tend to be less expensive than naturally-mined stones. Furthermore, lab-created diamonds can be altered to ensure certain outcomes – for example, a perfectly pink diamond.
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Apart from lab-created diamonds, moissanite stones are also an excellent alternative.
Moissanite is the gemstone most similar to the natural diamond. Its appearance and physical properties are so similar to those of a natural diamond that it is difficult to distinguish with the naked eye.
In addition, moissanite shines brighter and has a more stunning fire than diamond, while costing 1/10th of the price of the latter.
April birthstone meaning: The unbreakable bond
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The allure of a diamond, from antiquity to present, is that a diamond is “forever”. Diamonds found on earth are typically aged from one to three billion years.
Ancient Romans believed that wearing a diamond on the left hand could ward off evil powers and bring victory and good fortune to the owner. That's when they began to use diamonds in wedding rings.
Besides their mystical uses, diamonds are widely known as the hardest material ever discovered by humans, and subsequently, the diamond symbolizes the unbreakable bond.
You’ve probably heard of the lore of the Hope diamond, a famous gem currently on display at the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C.
Weighing 45.52 carats with a brilliant deep blue color, it is one of the most well-known gemstones in the world because of its beauty as well as its dark history, dating back at least four centuries.
Cut from a larger gem that once belonged to King Louis XIV of France, the diamond was stolen and possessed by a run of unfortunate owners who died in various gruesome ways, such as suicide, wild dogs, or angry mobs.
Ultimately, the Hope diamond came to rest at the Smithsonian, where millions of visitors have marveled at its one-of-a-kind beauty. Not every diamond has a curse attached, but all diamonds are definitely powerful!
Another famous and expensive diamond in the world today is a Graff Pink diamond, GIA-rated: Fancy Intense Pink. It weighs about 24.78 carats and was sold at Sotheby’s, Geneva for a record of $46 million in 2010, as shown above.
The care and cleaning of your diamond
Despite diamonds being tougher than anything else in the world, they are still a piece of luxury jewelry and should be treated with care.
Now and again, show your gemstone some love by cleaning it in a bowl of warm water with a few drops of dish detergent and a soft toothbrush. Removing any dirt is essential to keeping your jewel sparkling.
Your diamond might be tough, but its setting might not be – make sure to regularly check the security of the prongs that are holding the gemstones. This needs to be done about once a year and should only take you a few minutes.