Colored diamonds are big news these days, especially when it comes to colored diamond rings. After decades of being told that clear diamonds were a must when it came to both engagement and wedding rings modern brides are choosing to follow their own path - and their own tastes - and are choosing to buck traditions with colored choices like purple diamond engagement rings.

Purple diamond engagement rings actually offer something extra special. They offer all the romantic appeal of pink diamonds but also add a little mystery and sophistication. And as the color purple has always been associated with royalty they have a very luxe and sophisticated air as well.

How Are Purple Diamonds Formed?

Natural colored diamonds usually start their 'lives' the same way as any other but then come into contact with a certain element, elements or set of environmental conditions that alter their appearance.

In the case of purple diamonds although there are a number of theories as to just how these very rare gems come to exist the most prevalent is that they are subject to what scientists term 'post-growth plastic deformation' as they travel from their 'birthplace' in the Earth's core to the surface.

This, in layman's terms means the diamond is subjected to pressure that 'deforms' it in some way without actually breaking it, and in the case of purple diamonds that means changing its color.

But that's not the only theory out there. Some also believe that it is the introduction of two extra elements during the growth process - boron and hydrogen - that gives these gems their purple hues.

Where in the World Are Purple Diamonds Found?

Most of the world's limited supply of purple diamonds is found in mines in the Argyle Mine in Australia, famous for also being the site where most of the world's pink diamonds are found, as well as in the Mir mine in Sybir, a remote area of Siberia. The Mir mine is one of the most desolate and difficult to work in the world and has in fact closed on a number of occasions so if you choose a purple diamond ring it's likely the journey to get it to you was not in any way an easy one!

How Rare are Purple Diamonds?

Purple diamonds are often thought to be the second rarest colored diamond, after red. But again (the world of colored diamonds is complicated but we are sure you have figured that out by now) purple diamonds themselves can be divided into several different types. Most purple stones contain secondary hues of pink, red, blue, or gray. Those with pink or red elements are considered purple, and those with blue or gray are usually labelled violet. A true purple diamond is very, very rare.

The variation in color is in itself fascinating. Arguably the three most famous purple diamonds in the world - the Russian Royal Purple Heart Diamond, the Australian Argyle Violet Diamond and the Supreme Purple Star Diamond all look rather different. The Argyle Violet is the deepest purple of all, while the Purple Heart has a 'bluer' look and the Supreme can look almost red in some lights. Yet they are all considered to be purple!

Why Choose Purple Diamond Engagement Rings?

There are many reasons. Because they are rare and unusual. Because they are stunning and sophisticated. Because they often look completely different in when they catch the light in a different way. Or even because they compliment so many different clothing and accessory styles. But in the end the most important reason to choose a purple daimond is because you want to!