If you are thinking about purchasing a diamond, you have to learn how to buy diamonds correctly. It is important to consider the 4C’s (cut, color, clarity, and carat weight). Diamond clarity is one of the most important things to consider. Clarity refers to the absence of internal inclusions and surface irregularities called blemishes. Diamonds without inclusions or blemishes are rare, thus affecting its value.
What Causes Inclusions?
When a diamond is forming, small crystals can become trapped inside the diamond. As the crystal grows, irregularities can develop in its atomic structure. These crystals might remain after the stone has been cut and polished and they can affect a diamond’s appearance.
GIA Clarity Scale
The GIA Clarity Scale contains 11 grades. Most diamonds fall into the VS (very slightly included) or SI (slightly included) categories. Flawless diamonds are exceptionally rare that it is possible to spend a lifetime in the diamond jewelry without seeing one.
- Flawless (FL) – No inclusions and no blemishes are visible to a skilled grader using 10× magnification
- Internally Flawless (IF) – No inclusions and only blemishes are visible under 10× magnification
- Very, Very Slightly Included (VVS1 and VVS2) – Inclusions are so slight that they are difficult to see for a skilled grader under 10× magnification
- Very Slightly Included (VS1 and VS2) – Inclusions are minor and are observed with difficult 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. This may affect the transparency and brilliance of the diamond
Many inclusions and blemishes are too tiny to be seen by the naked eye. To someone who is untrained, A VS1 and SI2 may look the same. However, these diamonds quite different in terms of quality. This is the reason why expert and accurate assessment of diamond clarity is a crucial factor in buying diamonds.