Like Color, Clarity plays a large part in contributing to the overall value and look of your diamond. When determining the Clarity of a diamond, two features are considered: internal and external.
The internal features of a diamond are referred to as Inclusions. Inclusions are tiny specks of diamonds or minerals crystals that are trapped inside the diamond from the time it forms.
The external features of a diamond are referred to as Blemishes. Blemishes are surface irregularities like nicks or scratches on the diamond’s surface. Together, these Clarity Characteristics are considered for the overall Clarity of the diamond. The fewer Clarity Characteristics within your diamond the higher value the diamond has.
Even though in regards to clarity characteristics less is more, clarity characteristics have been and continue to be very important to gemologists to determine where a diamond comes from and how it forms. When diamonds are properly documented, diamonds may be identified by analyzing their unique inclusions. Just think of how we use fingerprints to identify people. Inclusions certainly don’t help the value of your diamond, but even a diamond’s flaws have something to offer. This fact reminds us of their everlasting allure and mystery.
In some cases to increase the clarity and value of your diamond, surface blemishes can be re-cut or polished. Although this will decrease the total carat weight of the diamond, clarity is of the highest importance when choosing a superior diamond.
The highest quality in Diamond Clarity starts at F, or Flawless, and I.F., or Internally Flawless. This means that the diamond is has no internal flaws visible to a master gemologist or jeweler. There are no inclusions visible under a 10x magnification and no surface blemishes.
The next standard of clarity down from Flawless or Internally Flawless is the VVS clarity quality. VVS stands for Very, Very Slightly Included. This means that there are slight inclusions only visible to an expert gemologist under 10x magnification.
VS or Very Slightly Included is also a high quality diamond but has slight inclusions. However, these inclusions and blemishes are very difficult to see even with 10x magnification, and they are certainly not visible to the unaided eye. They are significantly less expensive than the F, IF and VVS grades of clarity but because they show no outwardly visible difference to the average naked eye they are the best value when buying a diamond for jewelry. This is especially true of diamonds that are below 1-carat weight or 1ctw.
Wedding Bands Wholesale Inc. does not set jewelry in lower quality than VS grade clarity. Again, this is because of our commitment to giving our customers the best quality diamonds at manufacturer prices. We dedicate ourselves to superior craftsmanship and use only the highest standards when selling diamond jewelry. When dealing in loose diamonds, SI and below are indeed offered. Sometimes with large stones the SI clarity is recommended to get the most value for your money.
However, to have a total knowledge of Diamond Clarity it is important to know the difference between a superior diamond and a poor diamond. The next grade of diamond clarity is represented by S, meaning Slightly included. As you can see from the diagram, the inclusions are easily located with 10x magnification and there are visible external blemishes. This is not a recommended diamond grade to use when cut above 1-carat weight or 1ctw. This is because the Clarity Characteristics are sometimes visible even to the naked eye. Although, some diamonds over 1ctw, which are cut in this grade can indeed be very presentable.
Slightly included diamonds are then followed by I1 and I2 which stand for Included or sometimes referred to as Imperfect. These diamonds should not be used for jewelry since inclusions and blemishes are easily spotted by the naked eye and do not produce very much fire and sparkle. The I1 and I2 grade diamonds are usually used for precision tools and many other useful items that utilize their strength and resilience rather than their beauty.