We have all wanted to own a diamond jewel, whether to wear it for a special occasion, to gift it to someone special or simply to treat ourselves. However, choosing the ideal diamond is not an easy task because it has many aspects to take into account. Today in our blog we tell you everything you need to know about one of the most important aspects, Clarity. Let’s start!.
The 4 C’s of diamonds
Measuring the quality of a diamond is a complex task, so four standards have been developed to measure the quality of a diamond. These four criterions are the 4C’s:
- Cut, this is one of the most important elements since it marks the shape the diamond will have. For it to have the desired brilliance and elegance, the diamond must have the correct depth, width and symmetry.
- Colour is the most visual characteristic because it catches the eye at first glance. Diamonds come in all colours, but the most common is white.
- Clarity refers to the quality of the diamond. The number, size and position of the inclusions in a diamond will result in a lower or higher clarity. More on clarity will be explained below.
- Carat, this is the aspect that measures the weight of the diamond. The more carats a diamond has, the heavier it will be. Moreover, this criterion is one of the most closely linked to the price…
What is diamond clarity?
The diamond clarity, although its very name can lead to confusion, is not about the colour, transparency or brilliance of the diamond, it is about the impurities it has.
Specifically, this measure is used to quantify and give value to the appearance of the stone from a visual point of view. In other words, the fewer blemishes, imperfections and impurities a diamond has, its quality will be higher. As for the appearance of these, this occurs during the crystallisation process of the mineral, and the so-called inclusions appear, which can be either internal or external.
Now that we know what clarity is, it is important to know how it is measured and what standards are used to classify diamonds according to their level of impurities.
How is the diamond clarity measured?
To determine the clarity of a diamond and place it in one of the categories explained below, experts analyse its appearance by placing the diamond face up and using a microscope with a magnification of 10x. If you want to do a more thorough job, you would need a higher magnification lens.
To measure the clarity of diamonds optimally, it is necessary to take into account several factors such as size, nature, number and position of the imperfections.
What are the levels of measurement for the clarity of a diamond?
Now that we know what clarity means and how it is measured, it is important to understand the many different grades a diamond can fall into.
Diamond Clarity Grades
- FL or IF (Internally Flawless), are those diamonds in which no imperfections are visible, they are usually called colloquially as free or clean.
- VVS1 (Very Very Small Inclusions), in most cases, the imperfection is only one and extremely difficult to see under 10x magnifying glass. Therefore, a higher magnification is needed.
- VVS2 (Very Very Small Inclusions), in the case of VVS2, there are usually minute inclusions and are still difficult to locate under a 10x magnifying glass.
- VS1 (Very Small Inclusions), in this case, the impurities start to become slightly more visible under the 10x magnifying glass. However, they are still very small.
- VS2 (Very Small Inclusions), in the second level of this category the inclusions are rather easy to detect with a 10x magnifying glass, in most cases, the imperfections are large enough to find them without having to make a great effort.
- SI1 (Small Inclusions), although this is not the case for all diamonds of this type, from this category onwards the inclusions begin to be very noticeable at first sight under the 10x magnifying glass.
- SI2 (Small Inclusions), although it is true that depending on the cut, the imperfections are more noticeable, in this case, if the diamond has an Emerald or Asscher cut, they are more noticeable at first sight. Otherwise, with the help of a jeweller’s loupe, they would be easily visible.
- I1 (Included), in this category, there are large and/or numerous imperfections that begin to be noticeable to the naked eye, even in brilliant cut diamonds.
- I2 (Included), when level two is reached the inclusions are several and large very visible to the naked eye. As a consequence, the brilliance decreases.
- I3 (Included), level three as well as level two are levels where the imperfections are numerous, large and quite visible, in this case, the structure of the diamond could be compromised, so it can crack or even break. This is why it is not recommended to use this type of diamond.
Now that you know the 4 C’s of diamonds and the relevance of knowing their clarity level, you can make a better choice before buying a diamond. Do you already know what will be your next purchase from our wide range of diamond jewellery?