Diamond Clarity

Clarity refers to the size and number of flaws in the diamond- scratches, trace minerals or other minute characteristics. To determine a diamonds clarity grade, it must be examined unmounted, under 10x magnification loop by a gemologist.

diamond rough

F Flawless
The diamond shows no inclusions or blemishes of any sort under 10X magnification when observed by an experienced grader.
IF Internally Flawless
The diamond has no inclusions when examined by an experienced grader using 10X magnification, but may have extremely minor blemishes.
VVS1, VVS2 Very, Very slightly included
The diamond contains minute inclusions that are difficult even for experienced graders to see under 10X magnification.
VS1, VS2 Very slightly included
The diamond contains minute inclusions such as small crystals, clouds or feathers when observed with effort under 10X magnification.
SI1, SI2 Slightly included
The diamond contains inclusions (clouds, included crystals, knots, cavities, and feathers) that are noticeable to an experienced grader under 10X magnification.
I1, I2, I3 Included
The diamond contains inclusions (possibly large feathers, large included crystals, knots, cavities, and feathers) that are obvious under 10X magnification and may affect transparency and brilliance. Flaws are visible to the naked eye.


Generally, a diamond with clarity of SI2 or better appears spotless to the naked eye. However, inclusions on some SI1 diamonds could very well be eye-visible if the inclusions are reflecting.

Inclusions in diamonds include pinpoints, feathers, clouds, cavities, fractures, laser marks, etc. It must be noted that certification labs do not differentiate among color, size, nature, or location of the inclusion or whether it reflects on other facets. They go by the size of the inclusion. Of course, an SI1 diamond with an open cavity on the table is much less valuable than an SI1 with a small white cloud by the edge of the girdle. An SI1 clarity diamond with a small inclusion in the pavilion side of the diamond may appear as an I1 because of the inclusion’s reflection on other facets, thereby producing several mirror images of the same inclusion. This is one of the reasons why we see identical looking diamonds priced so far apart. Unfortunately, the internet cannot explain these differences. It is also very easy to conceal flaws on the girdle or cover chips on the girdle under prongs in a diamond that is already mounted. There is nothing wrong with this, as long as this is represented accurately and you pay accordingly. Therefore, it is extremely important to view the diamond loose for clarity grading.