Diamond Fluorescence

Diamond Fun Fact

Conflict diamonds as a percentage of all rough diamonds traded have been reduced from approximately 4% to considerably less than 1% since the implementation of the Kimberley Process in 2003

Diamond fluorescence is a phenomenon that exists in many diamonds in which the diamond emits visible light (usually blue) when exposed to ultra-violet light (UV light) which is invisible to the human eye. Most diamonds have a Blue fluorescence. This means that they emit blue light when exposed to UV light. fluorescence can be found in other colors but these are much more rare than the widespread Blue fluorescence.

The most common source of UV light is sunlight. The sun emits plenty of UV light in addition to the visible light that lets us see and get around. This means that a diamond with fluorescence will have a bluish tint to it during daylight. Also, if you happen to go to a club that has UV lamps (you may know them by their common name - BlackLite lamps) your diamonds will also glow blue.

Actually, these UV lamps are used to asses if a diamond has fluorescence and how strong the fluorescence is.

Levels of Fluorescence

To distinguish between different strengths of diamond fluorescence, 5 different levels are used to describe the intensity of the fluorescence. None, Faint, Medium, Strong and Very Strong. Again, these are natural, internal characteristics of a diamond and cannot be changed.

Is Fluorescence Good or Bad?

Diamond fluorescence can be good or bad. Nowadays, most jewelers would agree that contrary to popular belief, diamond fluorescence can be a good thing under certain conditions.

In lower colored diamonds such as G-I diamonds, light fluorescence can be a welcomed effect. Many jewelers will argue that the bluish tint caused by fluorescence will cause the diamond to seem 'clearer', especially in diamonds that are a bit murky and hazy. Keep in mind that it's a good idea to avoid diamonds with very strong fluorescence. In even lower colored diamonds such as J-M, sometimes an even stronger fluorescence such as medium FL can be used to get more beauty and an appearance of clarity out of the diamond.

In D colored diamonds, FL is usually an unwanted effect that takes away from the diamonds natural beauty.

Fluorescence when Buying Online?

The best way to see the effect of diamond fluorescence is to ask the jeweler to see the diamond in question under different light conditions - especially under direct sunlight. Since this option does not exist in Online Shopping - If you want to be on the safe side look for a diamond with no FL. Diamonds with faint fluorescence can also be an option, but it would be a good idea to avoid any diamond with fluorescence higher than Faint.