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The Four C's of Diamonds: Clarity
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A diamond is defined by professionals and the public alike, most often by its cut. colour, clarity and carat weight contribute heavily as well to a diamond’s value and aesthetic appeal, however it’s the cut that impacts directly on the stone’s facets, proportions, and light reflection.

Inclusions found on a diamond can be considered nature's birthmarks, the distinguishing characteristics that make the stone unique. When grading a diamond, 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. To ensure a large selection, Brilliance offers diamonds with a range of clarity ratings from FL (Flawless) to I1 (Included). Diamonds with clarity ratings of I1 or higher contain inclusions that are typically undetectable without special magnified viewers.

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Light's Effect on a Diamond

There are many factors that determine a diamond’s brilliance, the most important of which is its ability to reflect light. As a diamond is moved through a light source, tiny flashes will be visible within the stone. Commonly known as sparkle, this is also referred to as scintillation, an effect of the stone’s reflection and refraction of light.

Reflection

When light enters the surface of a diamond, a portion of it is reflected back out of the top.

Refraction

The remaining rays of light travel into the center of the diamond and bounce off its internal walls, an effect known as refraction.

Dispersion

As light exits the diamond, dispersion causes the white light to be separated into multiple colours. Some light will escape out the bottom and sides, and some will reflect out of the top of the stone.

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Certification

A diamond certificate, also known as a diamond grading report, is an easily understood document prepared by an expert gemologist that describes the key characteristics of a diamond. Every diamond sold by Excalibur Royale is certified a third-party certification laboratory such as the Gemological Institute of America (GIA).

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Clarity Scale
Diamond Clarity Scale

FL - IF:
No Internal Inclusions

VVS-1 - VVS-2:
Very Very Small Inclusions. Very difficult to detect under 10x magnification.

VS-1 - VS-2:
Very Small Inclusions. Can be seen under 10x magnification and in some cases to the naked eye.

SI-1 - SI-3:
Small Inclusions. Can be seen under 10x magnification and may be visible to the naked eye.

I-1 - I-3:
Imperfect. Inclusions are visible under 10x magnification and in most cases to the naked eye.

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Selecting a Clarity

Below are some points to consider when selecting your desired clarity rating:

Those who prefer a diamond with little or no inclusions will likely choose a clarity rating of FL-IF or VVS. Although they are priced higher, these high-quality diamonds boast a near-perfect appearance.

While still considered high quality, diamonds rated in the VS clarity range will not cost as much as more premium clarities. VS diamonds will contain inclusions that are undetectable to the unaided eye.

Considered by many to be a great value, SI1-SI2 diamonds will contain inclusions that can be detected with magnification, yet are typically undetectable to the unaided eye and do not detract from the beauty of the diamond. If you are considering a diamond with an SI rating, contact a Brilliance diamond and jewelry expert to ensure the inclusions are not visible to the naked eye.

Those who desire large carat weights at lower prices may choose diamonds in the SI3-I1 clarity range. Inclusions in these stones are usually noticeable without magnification.

The location of a diamond's inclusions significantly impacts the stone's clarity rating. External and internal characteristics hidden near the side facets of a diamond detract from its beauty less than inclusions and blemishes located in the center of the diamond.