The GIA is currently the most widely known diamond grading organization in America. It is also the most trusted name in diamond grading and certification across the world. According to GIA standards and methods, clarity of diamond is graduated into 11 sections. The chart starts with Flawless and ends in I3. The clarity sheet needs to be understood generally in order to gain a comprehensive understanding of the different qualities of diamonds. Here is a look at the five basic grades of clarity that you must inform yourself about, before you buy a diamond.
Flawless: The Flawless is the topmost section of the chart. It is broken down into two, Flawless and Internally Flawless. The Flawless is as perfect as a diamond gets. It bears no inclusion, no blemish whatsoever, even under a 10 times magnification examination. Those graded as Internally Flawless have no inclusions, but very minute blemishes, visible only from said scrutiny.
VVSI: VVS, expanded as Very Very Slightly Included are diamonds that feature extremely minute inclusions that reveal themselves only under 10X magnification. The inclusions of VVSI diamond is very tricky for even the most hawk-eyes experts to be able to tell. VVSI is segregated into VVS1 and VVS2 categories.
VSI: Very Slightly Included diamonds have flaws that are more prominent than the grades before it, but are still minor. That makes it easy for a person with the skill and training of a professional grader to notice and find out. VSI is divided into VS1 and VS2 slots.
SI: SI or Slightly Included stones have imperfections that are observable to trained graders. S1 stones bear lesser marks of inclusion than S2. So, in a way, the S1 stones are of superior grade than S2 stones, though the differences can hardly be told.
I: The last of the range is Included in which diamonds carry signification inclusions to the point that the presence of these marks affect the brilliance of the stones and diminish their transparency. Since, stones in this category carry considerable inclusions, they are divided into three categories of I1, I2 and I3. You may want to be a little too careful when buying stones from this range. The differences in the three categories of Included may not be very striking, but the inclusions can increasingly affect the stones’ quality on the way downward.
If you are looking for shiny gems and do not mind a little pocket pinch with insignificant inclusions, then stick to the ones towards the higher end of the scale.
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