Diamond Education | Clarity

What does diamond "clarity" mean?

Each love story is unique so why not propose with a ring as exceptional as your love? Diamonds are created under extreme heat and pressure and such extreme conditions are bound to lead to small imperfections. When these imperfections occur within the diamond, they are known as inclusions, and when they occur on the diamond’s surface, they are known as blemishes.

Clarity refers to the degree to which these imperfections are present and the more inclusions or blemishes a diamond has, the less brilliance it has. Brilliance refers to how well the diamond sparkles in light and when there is an inclusion or blemish, it interferes with the light path that makes it striking to the naked eye.

When shopping for a diamond, keep in mind that diamonds are graded for clarity using the 11-point GIA diamond clarity scale from FL (flawless), meaning no inclusions or blemishes under 10x magnification to I1, I2 and I3 (Included) which means the diamonds have inclusions almost always visible to the naked eye. In fact, these inclusions are like your diamond’s identification. The certifications of certified diamonds chart the diamond’s cracks, which are essentially the diamond’s fingerprint.

The shape of the diamond can also affect the diamond’s clarity. Brilliant-cut diamonds like round, princess, cushion, pear, oval and marquise hide inclusions better than step cuts such as emerald and asscher. If you are purchasing a step-cut diamond, move up one clarity grade e.g. purchase a VS2 instead of an SI1 to get the lowest grade with the least visible inclusions.

Create your custom Sylvie Collection engagement ring or choose from one of the many timeless collections by keeping these notes about diamond clarity in mind:

  • FL-rated diamonds are extremely rare. Less than 1 in 5,000 jewelry quality diamonds are rated FL.

  • If you’re seeking a diamond as close to FL as possible, choose a VVS2 (Very Slightly Included, where inclusions are not visible to the naked eye but clear under 10x magnification) or better diamond.

  • Clarity becomes more important with each larger diamond because the larger the diamond, the more easily detectable the imperfections.

  • A diamond does not have to be rated Flawless to be stunning.