Inclusions found on a diamond can be considered nature’s birthmarks. Thes distinguishing characteristics make the stone unique. The amount of inclusions and blemishes has a direct impact on its clarity and value. Flawless diamonds containing no inclusions are extremely rare and very expensive. A majority of the commercially sold diamonds contains inclusions that are undetectable to the unaided eye. Retail stores sometimes rate their clarity higher than it really is.
- Clarity is the third most important characteristic because most imperfections cannot be seen unless under professional magnification.
- Clarity refers to the tiny imperfections called inclusions. Diamonds with the least and smallest inclusions receive the highest clarity grades. Diamonds with no inclusions are considered to be flawless.
- To maximize your budget, an eye-clean diamond (grades VVSI-SI1), which means it has no visible inclusions to the naked eye is a popular choice.
Flawless, Internally Flawless
Under 10x magnification, inclusions are not visible, rarest clarity grade.
- FL: No visible blemishes, <1% of diamonds
- IF: Very slight blemishes, <3% of diamonds
Very, Very Slightly Included
Under 10x magnification, inclusions are so small, it is difficult to see.
- VVS1: Inclusions in bottom-half, pavilion
- VVS2: Inclusions in top-half, crown
Very Slightly Included
Under 10x magnification, inclusions are minor, slightly visible.
- VS1: Slightly less inclusions than VS2
- VS2: Slightly more inclusions than VS1
Under 10x magnification, inclusions are noted, more visible.
- SI1: Inclusions possibly invisible to the eye
- SI2: Inclusions often visible to the eye
Under 10x magnification, inclusions are obvious, visible to the eye.