Now that we have covered CARAT and CUT, we should probably let you know the shocking truth that diamonds are not perfect.
As diamonds are found, having undergone an immense amount of pressure under the earth’s surface, it is quite understandable that during this crystalisation process, they will end up containing tiny inclusions, which are foreign materials that have formed within the stone that affect the internal makeup of the diamond, or blemishes which are flaws that affect the surface.
Fortunately for us, these inclusions or blemishes are usually undetectable to the naked eye and most jewellers would need a very strong magnifying glass (or loupe) to notice anything.
When inspecting a diamond, gemologists have determined 5 clarity categories within a diamond, with imperfections defining the clarity grade a diamond will fall into:
FL or IF - Flawless.
VVS - Very Very Slightly Included.
VS - Very Slightly Included.
SI - Slightly Included.
I - Included
Even though these inclusions are usually undetectable to the naked eye, you don’t want to ignore CLARITY completely, and suddenly end up with a 2-carat diamond that meets your budget, but has very visible inclusions. We recommend just using your judgement, it’s all about balance after all. Generally a grade from Flawless to VS will be undetectable, so once you’re comfortable with the weight and grade of clarity, CUT and COLOUR will most likely be where you want to focus your priorities, and your budget. Read our next article to find out about COLOUR.