The discussion of diamond colour usually refers to the presence or absence of colour in white diamonds. The ideal standard for white diamonds is as close to colourless, or white, as possible. Whiter diamonds allow more light to pass through, which is why they appear to have more fire and sparkle. On the Gemological Institute of America’s (GIA) diamond colour-grading scale, D indicates colourless and G through I is considered near-colourless. D through Z is a measure of the increasing presence of colour – from faint, very light or light yellow to brownish tints.
An easy way to assess a diamond’s colour is to put it inside the fold of a clean white piece of paper to see how much colour is present – how “white” it is compared to the white paper. As with clarity, colour differences along the spectrum are subtle and generally obvious only to a diamond professional, especially for diamonds graded F to H. Indeed, for everyday wear, the untrained eye can detect very little, if any, colour in the F, G and H grades.