Diamond Clarity – Lets first define “clarity” as it relates to diamond. G.I.A. states that – “Diamond Clarity Refers to the Absence of Inclusions and Blemishes.” So, to understand how clarity is determined, we really need to know what “inclusions” and “blemishes” are.
“Inclusions” in natural diamonds are naturally occurring internal characteristics within the diamond crystal. “Blemishes” are external characteristics on the exterior of the diamond crystal. Furthermore, clarity grading characteristics are determined by 3 basic criteria. They are number, size and orientation of the inclusions and blemishes.
- NUMBER- How many inclusions.
- SIZE – How big the inclusions are.
- Orientation – Where they are located in or on the diamond.
After the 3 criteria above have been determined, then a clarity grade is issued. See the chart above for a depiction of clarity grading characteristics.
Among other criteria (the 4C’s), the value of a diamond is based on the absence of inclusions and or blemishes. The fewer the inclusions, the higher the value. The more abundant the inclusions are – the lower the value.
I hope this explanation helps to better understand how diamond clarity is determined.
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Joseph R. Villarreal, Graduate Gemologist (G.I.A.)