1 Nov 2021 | 8 min read
In this series of Diving Deeper into the 4Cs of a Diamond, we will be looking at perhaps the third most important aspect of a diamond, which is its Clarity. What exactly is the clarity of a diamond and why is it so important? How does the clarity affect a diamond? What do you need to look out for? Let’s find out below.
What is the Clarity of a Diamond / Diamond Clarity?
The ‘Clarity’ of a diamond is determined by the number of imperfections both on the surface and inside of the gem. Natural diamonds are formed when carbon is under intense heat and pressure, causing the carbon atoms to crystallize. As the process in which a diamond is formed is not uniform, it results in unique and imperfect diamonds being created each time. There may be small imperfections on the surface or within the diamond which can affect their clarity grade. Imperfections mostly cause the diamond to have a lower clarity grade.
As such, a diamond clarity can be a considered a measure of its purity which is graded by the visibility of any imperfections within the diamond or on its surface. Internal flaws or imperfections can be referred to as inclusions while external flaws or blemishes can be referred to as exclusions. What constitutes a flawless diamond is the lack of any visible imperfections (inclusions and exclusions) under a 10x magnification.
Why is the Diamond Clarity So Important?
The diamond clarity can be considered the third most important aspect when looking at a diamond. The clarity of a diamond matters as it can directly affect its brilliance and sparkle. Multiple imperfections or inclusions will take away the beauty of the diamond. These imperfections distort the reflection and refraction of light within a diamond, resulting in the diamond appearing to be more cloudy and less crystal clear. Hence, it is important to look at the clarity grade as a diamond with a poor clarity grade usually has several inclusions or blemishes.
Diamond Clarity Scale
The official GIA clarity scale and definitions are shown as follows:
- 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
What Should I Look Out for When Purchasing a Diamond?
When looking to purchase a diamond, do take note of the clarity grade and that every diamond will differ slightly. Other than checking for the clarity grade only, it is helpful to personally inspect the diamond yourself to see if you can notice any imperfections with the naked eye. However, not all imperfections are visible to the naked eye.
As such, rather than choosing the diamond with the highest clarity grade which might be too expensive for your budget, it is recommended to choose a diamond that looks clean or clear enough for the naked eye and ensure that the imperfections do not interfere with the diamond’s brilliance or sparkle. If you are unsure, do ask an expert for their opinion or confirmation as the clarity grade alone will not tell you how the imperfections will affect the diamond’s overall appearance. A diamond with a lower clarity grade might work for you if you are unable to see the inclusions or blemishes with your naked eye and it does not affect its sparkle, offering you better value for your money.
Where Can I Safely Purchase a Diamond Online?
GXT World is an online global diamond distributor that works with various partners worldwide to source for the best diamonds, bringing sparkling diamonds from all over the world directly to our customers. GXT World has many global partners including diamond suppliers in India, Belgium, and the United States, ensuring that the highest quality diamonds are made more accessible to our customers.
We understand that each consumer is looking for their own unique diamond, with some looking for larger ones with less emphasis on the colour, and others looking for smaller, colourless gems. No matter what shape or combination of the 4Cs that our customers are looking for, they are sure to find the diamond that they want on GXT World.
The GXT World platform is user-friendly, with customers easily able to specify the different characteristics of the diamond that they would like to purchase through the search function. GXT World strives to provide consumers with the best value and service to ensure that each customer enjoys both the diamond itself and the purchasing process on our platform.
Do browse through our wide selection of diamonds here or contact our customer service for any enquiries or support.