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Glossary

Glossary

14kt gold - Jewelry that is 14kt gold is 58.3% gold. It contains 14 parts gold and 10 parts additional metals.

18kt gold - Jewelry that is 18kt gold is 75% gold. It contains 18 parts gold and 6 parts additional metals.

4 Cs - The 4 Cs (Cut, Carat, Color, and Clarity) are a way of assessing the quality of a diamond. 

AGS - Stands for The American Gem Society. The AGS is a leader in grading diamonds.

Alloy - A base metal that is added to a precious metal to change its properties such as color and durability. Common alloys include copper and silver.

Amethyst - A semi precious purple stone. It is a variety of quartz.

Anniversary ring - A ring given as an anniversary gift. Eternity rings are popular anniversary rings.

Antique – Jewelry that is about 100 years old or older.

Art deco -  A style originating from the 1920s. Art deco jewelry features geometric shapes and white metals.

Asscher cut - A square shaped step cut diamond recognizable by an “X” visible in its table. 

Baguette - A baguette diamond is a step cut diamond, meaning it is cut for clarity rather than sparkle. Baguette diamonds are usually rectangular with straight or tapered ends. They are frequently used as side stones for engagement rings to create a vintage look.

Bangle bracelet - A rigid bracelet that does not feature a clasp.

Bar setting - A setting that secures a diamond with vertical metal bars on either side of the stone.

Beveled edge - Rings with a beveled edge are flat on top and have an angled edge.

Bezel setting - A setting that uses a circle of metal around the stone to secure it rather than prongs. It is the most secure setting.

Blemish - A blemish is a flaw on the outside of a diamond.

Blue sapphire - A precious gemstone with a Mohs hardness of 9. While sapphire can come in many colors, blue sapphire is the most well known color.

Blue topaz - This semi-precious gemstone has a Mohs hardness of 8. Because naturally occurring blue topaz is rare, the stone is often treated to achieve its blue hue.

Bridal set - A bridal set, also called a wedding set, is an engagement ring and matching wedding band.

Brilliance - The white light that is reflected from a diamond. 

Brilliant cut - A diamond that is cut with 58 facets (57 if you don’t count the culet) to produce maximum brilliance.

Carat (ct) - Carat is the measurement of how much a diamond weighs. One carat is equal to 200 milligrams. Carat is also related to size (how big a diamond looks), although it’s not the only factor that determines size.

Cathedral setting - A cathedral setting features a band that gradually rises upward to secure the center diamond. This adds structural durability and also allows for additional light to enter the diamond, creating more sparkle.

Cavity - This type of inclusion is a hole in the diamond’s surface. Depending on its placement, a cavity could affect the overall durability of the stone.

Certification - This certificate lists the details and 4 Cs of your diamond. The GIA refers to this document as a Diamond Grading Report.

Channel set - Channel set diamonds are set down in a groove and are held in place the pressure of the sides of the band.

Chip - This type of inclusion is a shallow indentation at the surface at the stone. It is sometimes created during the cutting process of a diamond.

Citrine - This popular semi-precious gemstone can be yellow to red-orange. It has a Mohs hardness of 7.

Clarity - Clarity is one of the 4 Cs. It refers to a diamond’s inclusions, or lack thereof.

Claw prong - A claw prong secures the stone with tiny pieces of metal that taper off. 

Cleavage - The parts in a diamond or gemstone that can easily be split due to weak atomic bonds. A gemstone cutter will cut the stone along its cleavage lines.

Clouds - This type of inclusion is a group of extremely small inclusions that cannot be distinguished from each other, even under magnification. They look like a translucent cloud inside the diamond and cannot be seen by the naked eye. 

Cobalt - This extremely durable and hypoallergenic metal is silver-gray in appearance and makes a wonderful choice for wedding bands.

Cocktail ring - A cocktail ring features a large centerstone for a dramatic appearance. They are generally intended for formal occasions. 

Color - One of the 4 Cs. “Color” actually indicates how little color a diamond reflects. The color grading scale ranges from “D” (completely colorless) to “Z” (yellow or brown).

Comfort fit - A comfort fit ring has a rounded interior to prevent irritation during wear. 

Crown - The crown is the part of the diamond that encompasses everything that sits above the girdle.

Crystals - This inclusion consists of the crystals of other minerals that become trapped in the diamond during formation.

Cubic Zirconia - Cubic Zirconia is a man-made diamond simulant with a hardness of 8.5 on the Mohs scale. Ritani does not sell cubic zirconia. 

Culet - The culet is the very bottom of the diamond’s pavilion. It is either a point or a tiny facet.

Cushion cut - A cushion cut diamond has a square or rectangular shape with curved corners and soft, vintage facet patterns.

Cut - One of the 4Cs. Cut refers to the quality of the diamond’s proportions and symmetry. A diamond with a higher cut grade will produce more sparkle.

Depth - the measurement of a diamond from top to bottom (its table to the culet).

Diamond Grading Report - This certification, issued by the GIA, describes all of the details about your diamond.

Dispersion - The separation of light that creates fire in a gemstone.  

Double prong - Two side by side prongs that are the same size and shape secure the stone.

Emerald cut - An emerald cut diamond is a rectangle-shaped step cut diamond evoking Art Deco designs. This shape focuses on clarity rather than sparkle.

Engagement ring - An engagement ring symbolizes a commitment to get married and is worn on the ring finger of the left hand.

Engraving - Engraving is a type of etching that can be done by hand or with a laser. Engraving can be used to add designs to the outside of the ring's band or to write a message on the inside of the band.

Enhanced gems - An enhanced gemstone is one that has undergone treatments to improve color, clarity, or durability.

Eternity band - An eternity band, also called an eternity ring, features diamonds going all the way around the band. Eternity bands are popular as anniversary gifts and as wedding rings.

Eye clean - An eye clean diamond is one that has zero imperfections visible to the naked eye.

Fancy color diamonds - Fancy color diamonds are diamonds that have colors outside of the normal color range, such as pink, blue, and yellow. They are very rare and thus more expensive.

Fancy cut - Also called fancy shape diamonds. A fancy cut diamond is any diamond that is not a round brilliant diamond - for example, oval cut, pear cut, and emerald cut diamonds are all fancy cuts.

Feathering - Feathering is a type of diamond inclusion. Feathering is a fissure that was likely created within the diamond billions of years ago when the diamond was first forming. Feathers are only considered a durability issue if found close to the girdle or as an opening on the surface of the stone. 

Fire - Fire is the colored sparkle you see in a diamond. Cut affects the level of fire a diamond has; a diamond with a higher cut grade will produce greater fire. 

Fluorescence - Fluorescence is the soft light a diamond may give off when placed under ultraviolet light. Not all diamonds have fluorescence. Although fluorescence is not visible under regular lighting conditions, it is considered a defect and thus reduces the cost of the diamond. 

French set - A french set diamond is a diamond that is set with small beads of metal to expose the sides and let light enter the diamond.

Garnet - Garnet is a semiprecious stone that is most popular in red. Its hardness on the Mohs scale ranges from 6.5 to 7.5.  

GIA - The GIA (Gemological Institute of America) is the leading research and education center for gems and jewelry. The GIA is also the original creator of the 4 Cs.

Girdle - The girdle is the widest part of a diamond as well as the outermost edge where the crown and pavilion connect.

Girdle reflection - A girdle reflection may look like a crack in the diamond, even though it is really just a reflection caused by the pavilion facets. The size of the girdle reflection depends on how thick the girdle is. 

Half moon diamond - A half moon diamond looks like a round or oval diamond cut in half. It features a brilliant facet pattern to produce sparkle and is often used for side stones of an engagement ring.

Halo setting - A halo setting has small diamonds surrounding the centerstone, creating the appearance of a larger diamond and producing more sparkle. 

Hammered finish - A hammered finish is a popular style on men’s wedding rings. It features subtle indentations on the ring’s band as if it was hammered down. 

Hardness - Hardness measures a gem or mineral’s resistance to scratching. The Mohs Scale ranks a stone’s relative hardness on a scale of 1 to 10 (1 being the weakest, 10 being the hardest).   

Heart cut - A heart cut diamond is a modified brilliant cut and is shaped like a heart. Heart shaped diamonds are a beautiful choice for engagement rings or diamond pendants.  

Hidden halo setting - A hidden halo setting features a tiny circle of diamonds that wrap around the center stone’s head for added brilliance and artistry. 

High polish finish - A high polish finish on a ring is a finish that is extra shiny and reflective. 

Hypoallergenic - Hypoallergenic metals, like platinum and cobalt, are extremely unlikely to cause an allergic reaction or irritation.

IGI - The IGI is the International Gemological Institute. It is a grading agency for diamonds and gemstones. At Ritani, our lab grown diamonds come with an IGI certification.  

Inclusions - An inclusion is a flaw or imperfection inside a diamond. A diamond with lots of inclusions or larger inclusions will receive a lower clarity grade. Inclusions make each diamond unique.

Indented natural - An indented natural is a type of diamond blemish. A natural is an unpolished part of the diamond. If a natural travels to the crown or pavilion of a diamond, it is considered an Indented Natural. Indented Naturals do not affect the overall quality or durability of a diamond.

Invisible setting - An invisible setting places diamonds side by side to create the appearance of a larger diamond. These diamonds have no visible metal securing them, creating a smooth surface of diamonds. Invisible settings usually feature square shaped diamonds such as princess cut diamonds because round cut diamonds cannot be set with an invisible setting.

Jewelry steamer - A jewelry steamer is a machine that uses heat and water vapor to clean jewelry. 

Karat (kt)  - Karat is a measure of the purity of gold. Jewelry of a higher karat means a greater percentage of gold was used. 

Kimberley Process - The Kimberley Process contains 54 participating countries around the world. The Kimberley Process is a commitment to eliminate conflict diamonds from the global supply chain. Because of The Kimberley Process, approximately 99.8% of the world’s diamonds are conflict-free. 

Knife edge - A knife edge band features raised edges that meet in the center of the band, creating an angled look. These angles allow light to easily reflect off the band, creating more shine.

Knot - A knot is a diamond crystal inclusion that breaks to the surface of the finished diamond. The knot may be raised above the rest of its facet: depending on its size, you may be able to feel it as you run your finger over the diamond.

Lab grown diamond - Lab grown diamonds, also called cultured diamonds or man made diamonds, are diamonds with the same physical, chemical, and optical properties as mined diamonds. Lab grown diamonds are real diamonds; the only difference between lab grown diamonds and earth grown diamonds is their origin.

Laser inscription - A laser inscription is an etching of numbers and letters, usually located on the diamond’s girdle. The laser inscription serves as an ID for your diamond. Laser inscriptions are not visible to the naked eye; they can be viewed with a loupe. 

Loupe - A magnifying glass used by jewelers to inspect a gemstone more closely. 

Low profile - An engagement ring with a low profile sits close to the finger.

Luster - Luster is the light reflected off of the surface of a gemstone or precious metal. 

Mandrel - A mandrel is a tool resembling a tapered bar used by jewelers to determine the size of a ring.  

Marquise cut - A marquise cut diamond is an elongated oval shape with smooth curves and pointed ends. The marquise shaped diamond has one of the highest size-per-carat-weight ratios of any diamond shape, which means that your diamond will appear larger.

Martini setting - The martini setting is a setting style used for diamond earrings. This setting features a cone-like shape, resembling a martini glass. It typically uses three prongs to secure the diamond.

Matched set - A matched set can either refer to two diamonds with the same traits and proportions, or an engagement ring and wedding band that were created to match each other.  

Matte finish - A ring with a matte finish has no shine. Matte rings are popular for men’s wedding rings.

Melee diamonds - Melee diamonds are tiny diamonds that weigh less than ⅕ of a carat. These diamonds are frequently used on the band of an engagement ring or as a halo surrounding the centerstone. 

Micropavé - A micropavé diamond band features extremely small diamonds set down in a groove and secured by tiny prongs. While the pavé style typically only has one strand of diamonds, the micropavé can have several. These are arranged in a checkered pattern, with two or more rows of diamonds lining the band. 

Milgrain - Milgrain detailing is a design technique used in jewelry that looks like a close-set row of tiny metal beads. Milgrain is typically used on the border of jewelry and is popular in vintage inspired designs.

Mixed cut - A mixed cut diamond combines the modified brilliant cut and the step-cut. Mixed cut diamonds include princess cut diamonds, cushion cut diamonds, and radiant cut diamonds.

Modified brilliant - A modified brilliant cut is a brilliant cut diamond that has been altered from its traditional round shape. Modified brilliant cut diamonds include oval shaped diamonds, pear shaped diamonds, marquise shaped diamonds, and heart shaped diamonds. 

Mohs Scale - The Mohs Scale rates the hardness of gemstones and minerals on a scale of 1 (softest) to 10 (hardest).  

Moissanite - Moissanite is a white gemstone that strongly resembles a diamond. It has a hardness of 9.25. Because naturally occurring moissanite is extremely rare, most moissanite on the market today is lab-created.

Needle - A needle is similar to a feather inclusion, but with only one elongated, very narrow line. Needles can be either white or transparent. 

Old European Cut - The Old European Cut is a vintage diamond cut and the predecessor to modern round brilliant cuts. Old European cut diamonds have larger facets and won’t sparkle as much as a round brilliant diamond. 

Old Mine Cut - The Old Mine Cut is an antique diamond cut featuring a squarish shape and 58 facets. Old mine cut diamonds have a small table, large culet, and higher crown. 

Oval cut - Oval cut diamonds feature an elongated shape. When used as the centerstone of an engagement ring, they create the illusion of longer fingers. Oval cut diamonds have recently surged in popularity as they provide something a bit more unique than the popular round cut diamond.

Palladium -  Palladium is an incredibly strong and hypoallergenic precious metal. It is a silvery-white metal that does not require rhodium plating.

Pavé - In a pavé setting, diamonds are set close together and are secured by tiny prongs so that they are barely visible. The pavé setting is popular in engagement ring bands and creates the illusion that the band is paved with diamonds.

Pavilion - A diamond’s pavilion is the area beginning at the girdle and ending at the culet. The bulk of a diamond’s weight is typically held here. 

Pear cut - Pear cut diamonds feature a teardrop shape. It exhibits lots of sparkle and lengthens the finger. 

Pendant - A pendant is a piece of jewelry hanging from a chain and is worn around the neck.

Peridot - Peridot is a yellow-green gemstone with a Mohs hardness of 6.5 to 7.

Pinpoint inclusion - Pinpoint inclusions are a tiny speck within the diamond and are usually only detectable under high magnification. They do not affect the overall durability of the diamond.  

Platinum - Platinum is a silver-white precious metal. It is one of the most durable metals and does not require rhodium plating. Platinum is also hypoallergenic, making it an ideal metal choice for someone with sensitive skin. 

Polish - Diamonds are polished after being cut to reveal a smooth finish. This also helps improve the diamond’s sparkle. The polish of a diamond will affect the diamond’s cut grade. 

Polish lines - While a diamond is being polished, the polishing wheel can create subtle scratches on the diamond’s surface, called polish lines. Only extreme polish lines can affect a diamond’s sparkle. 

Precious Gemstones - Diamonds, rubies, sapphires, and emeralds are all considered precious gemstones. Any other gemstone is considered semi-precious. 

Princess cut - The princess cut diamond is a modern, square shaped diamond with clean lines and lots of sparkle. It is one of the most popular diamond shapes. 

Prong setting - A prong setting secures the diamond with tiny metal claws. 4-prong and 6-prong settings are the most popular. 

Push back earrings - Push back earrings are one of the most popular types of earrings. Push back earrings have a small metal post that inserts into a metal backing that holds the earring in place.

Radiant cut - Radiant cut diamonds have a square or rectangular shape with intense brilliance and cropped corners. 

Refraction - Refraction happens when light enters a diamond  or gemstone and is scattered or bent. This contributes to the stone’s sparkle. 

Refractive index - Also called index of refraction, this measures how much light a diamond will refract. A diamond’s refractive index is very high, at 2.42. 

Rhodium - Rhodium is a silvery-white element used to plate white gold and sterling silver jewelry. Rhodium plating protects jewelry and makes it more lustrous.

Ring enhancer - Also called ring wraps. A ring enhancer surrounds a solitaire engagement ring with extra diamonds for a more dramatic look. They can be worn as a wedding band or stacked along with your bridal set. 

Ring sizer - A ring sizer is used to determine a person’s ring size.

Rose cut - This antique diamond cut has a flat base and a domed crown. Rose cut diamonds can have from 3 to 24 facets. 

Rose gold - Rose gold is a precious metal with a warm, reddish hue. It contains copper alloys that give it its rosey color. 

Rose quartz - This pink semi-precious gemstone has a hardness of 7 on the Mohs scale and is 

Rough diamond - A rough diamond, also called a raw diamond, is a diamond that has not been cut or polished yet. 

Round cut - Round cut diamonds are the most popular diamond shape. They create the most sparkle.

Ruby - A ruby is a red precious gemstone. It has a hardness of 9 on the Mohs scale. Rubies are some of the most expensive colored gemstones per carat. 

Satin finish - Satin finishes are often used on wedding rings to create a soft luster.

Semi-precious gemstones - Generally, any gemstone that is not a diamond, emerald, ruby, or sapphire is considered semi-precious. 

Scintillation - Scintillation is used to describe a diamond’s sparkle.

Screw back earrings - Screw back earrings are post earrings with a backing that must be screwed on to secure. These are common backings for expensive earrings. 

Semi-bezel setting - A semi bezel setting, also called a half bezel setting, only surrounds half of the edge of a gemstone with metal. This provides the security of a bezel but allows more light to enter the diamond’s sides, increasing sparkle.

Setting - The setting is what secures the center diamond to the ring band.

Shank - The shank is the band of the ring that wrap around your finger.

Side stones - Diamonds or gemstones that flank the centerstone, but aren’t the main focus point of the ring.

Simulant - A simulant, also called an imitation, is a stone that looks like a more expensive gemstone. For example, cubic zirconia and moissanite are both diamond simulants. 

Solitaire - A solitaire engagement ring contains a single diamond on a plain band for elegant simplicity.

Split shank - A split shank engagement ring features a band that parts as it reaches the center setting, creating a visible gap. 

Step cut diamonds - Step cut diamonds are cut with a focus on clarity rather than sparkle. They contain larger facets than brilliant cut diamonds that are arranged to look like steps. Step cut diamonds include asscher cut diamonds, emerald cut diamonds, and baguette cut diamonds. 

Sterling silver - Sterling silver is a silvery-white precious metal. It is a common metal choice for jewelry as it is less expensive than platinum or white gold.   

Surprise setting - A surprise setting is an engagement ring setting that features small accents of diamonds to create sparkle and increase the brilliance and artistry of a ring.

Swiss Blue Topaz - Swiss blue topaz is a bright blue gemstone. Most Swiss blue topaz is treated to attain its blue color because naturally occurring blue topaz is quite rare. It has a hardness of 8 on the Mohs scale.

Symmetry - Symmetry refers to the alignment of a diamond’s facets. When the diamond’s facets are properly aligned, the diamond will create more brilliance. Symmetry is an important factor of a diamond’s cut grade. 

Table - The table is the flat, topmost surface of a diamond. It is the largest facet, regardless of the diamond’s shape.

Tension setting - A tension setting secures the diamond or gemstone using pressure instead of prongs or a bezel. 

Three stone setting - A three stone setting is an engagement ring setting with a center stone flanked by two side stones. The three stones represent your past, present, and future together.

Titanium - Titanium is a metal used for wedding rings. This metal is incredibly durable, but unfortunately due to its hardness it is very difficult to resize and many jewelers won’t do it.  

Toughness - Gemstone toughness is different from hardness. It refers to a gemstone’s resistance to breaking and chipping. 

Trapezoid cut diamond - Trapezoid cut diamonds have parallel vertical sides while the horizontal angles taper towards the center stone. They are most frequently used as side stones for an engagement ring. They can be either step cut or brilliant cut.

Trillion cut - Trillion cut diamonds, also known as trilliant cut diamonds, are triangle-shaped stones. Their sides can be either pointed or slightly curved.

Tungsten - Tungsten is one of the strongest metals - it's 4x harder than titanium and 10x harder than gold. Tungsten is an affordable metal and is often used for wedding bands.

Twinning wisp - A twinning wisp, sometimes called intergrowth, is an inclusion that is the result of growth defects within the diamond’s crystal structure. They have a white striped appearance.

Ultrasonic cleaner - An ultrasonic cleaner cleans jewelry using sonic vibrations.

Untreated - An untreated gemstone is one that is completely natural and has not received any alterations or enhancements such as irradiation, heating, or dyeing. 

V prong -  A “V” prong secures a gemstone with a piece of metal that is shaped like a “V”. V prongs are often used to protect a gemstone’s pointed edges. They are often used for pear cut diamonds, princess cut diamonds, or marquise diamonds.

Vintage - True vintage jewelry is generally at least 20 years old. However, some jewelry is vintage-inspired, yet is still referred to as vintage. If you want a genuine piece of vintage jewelry, it’s important to double check with the seller that the piece is truly vintage.

White gold - White gold is a silvery-white precious metal that is a common choice for engagement rings and wedding rings. It can feature silver, palladium, or zinc alloys to give it its silver color.

Yellow gold - Yellow gold is a warm precious metal. It has been a popular choice for engagement rings as well as wedding rings for centuries.