Red Diamonds

Red Diamonds – Basics

The rarest diamond color is red. Natural fancy red diamonds are so scarce that even tiny red diamonds can command auction-worthy prices. Only 1 carat out of every 10,000 carats mined is a natural fancy colored diamond, making rarer colors with high saturation extremely valuable.

PriceScope Pointer: When it comes to fancy colored diamond (FCD) cutting you can throw away the normal cut-quality rules for D-Z colors. The goal with FCDs is cutting with angles which exaggerate the color present – which is opposite the goal for well-cut D-Z diamonds.

Before going on: Check out the PriceScope Diamond Buying Guide

Red Diamonds Described

Pure red diamonds devoid of secondary hues are the rarest and highest priced in the world. At the 2011 Argyle Pink Diamond Tender, there was only one red diamond offered, an .80ct fancy red oval-cut. It takes one million carats of rough to yield a one-carat pink diamond to be sold at the tender, so imagine how much rough is extracted to produce an .80ct fancy red.


Red Diamond from Leibish & Co.
0.52 carat Fancy Purplish Red Diamond
Photo courtesy of

Red Diamond Details

Cause of Color: Similar to pink and brown diamonds, color in red diamonds is generally thought to be caused by colored graining, which results from structural irregularities in combination with an impurity.

Secondary Colors: Red is the color between purple and orange, so common secondary colors in red diamonds include orangish red, purplish red and brownish red.

Rarity: Pure red diamonds are known to be the rarest of all fancy colored diamonds, and they command the highest prices. Weighing 5.11 carats the Moussaieff Red Diamond is the largest graded fancy red diamond in the world.

Grading: Red diamonds are graded as Fancy Red with modifying hues.

Mining: During its lifespan, Australia’s Argyle Diamond Mine produced most of the world’s red diamonds. The mine was closed in 2020. Brazil is another source of reds.

Related Topics on Red Diamonds:

Learn more about Fancy Color Diamonds

Have more questions about fancy colored diamonds? Click on the links below or visit our Fancy Colored Diamond Guide.

Fancy Colored Diamond Guide Topics:

Fancy Colored Diamond Introduction,
Yellow Diamonds,
Brown Diamonds,
Pink Diamonds,
Blue Diamonds,
Green Diamonds,
Black Diamonds,
Red Diamonds,
Orange Diamonds

Featured photo credit: Argyle Diamonds

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