Clarity is probably what most people think of when we talk about diamond quality. There are varying levels of grades, but what is clarity? Almost every diamond has internal characteristics that can affect the beauty and durability of a diamond. Sometimes they are other crystals or growth marks. The clarity scale created by Robert Shipley, founder of the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), is what we use today.
A diamond is graded under 10x magnification and will have one of the following grades:
Flawless (FL) - No inclusions or blemishes are visible to a skilled grader using 10× magnification
Internally Flawless (IF) - No inclusions and only blemishes are visible to a skilled grader using 10× magnification
Very, Very Slightly Included (VVS1 and VVS2) - Inclusions are difficult for a skilled grader to see under 10× magnification
Very Slightly Included (VS1 and VS2) - Inclusions are minor and range from difficult to somewhat easy for a skilled grader to see under 10x magnification
Slightly Included (SI1 and SI2) - Inclusions are noticeable to a skilled grader under 10x magnification
Included (I1, I2, and I3) - Inclusions are obvious under 10× magnification and may affect transparency and brilliance
*Inclusions are inside the diamond, and blemishes are on the surface of the diamond*
(This diamond picture was taken by my friends at Jack Lewis Jewelers in Bloomington, IL. John Carter, the owner, found a diamond crystal inside another diamond! So interesting!)
One thing to consider is that a diamond with a black inclusion and a diamond with a clear inclusion can have the same Clarity grade. That is why it is SO IMPORTANT to see a diamond in person, preferably with a microscope, BEFORE you buy one! I am a Graduate Gemologist who has been trained to grade diamonds and read lab reports, but even I would never buy a diamond without seeing it in person!
Inclusions are not always bad, though! If they are not prohibiting the beauty of a diamond, inclusions can be fascinating, even enhancing a diamond! I have seen an inclusion that looked like the profile of a humming bird which made the humming bird enthusiast very excited! I sold a ‘pregnant diamond,’ one with another diamond crystal inside the diamond! Inclusions are also a great way to identify your particular diamond because of the size, shape, color, and placement of inclusions are unique to each diamond.
I would love to help you create the wedding ring or anniversary ring of your dreams! Angela Cisneros Jewelry Concierge brings back the joy and confidence of jewelry shopping, so that you can celebrate with ease! My by-appointment approach means:
One-on-one appointments (personal attention and no crowds!)
Discretion and privacy (surprises remain surprises!)
Expert help from a Graduate Gemologist with 24 years of experience (yep, that’s me!)
Book your FREE appointment with me today! www.angelacisneros.com/book-appointment