Flawless (F) - no internal or external flaws
Internally Flawless (IF) - no internal flaws but some surface flaws
Very Very Slightly Included (VVS1-VVS2) - Minute inclusions very difficult to detect under 10x magnification by a trained gemologist
Very Slightly Included (VS1-VS2) - Minute inclusions seen only with difficulty under 10x magnification.
Slight Inlcuded (SI1-SI2) - Minute inclusions more easily detected under 10x magnification.
Included (I1-I3) - Inclusions visible under 10x magnification as well as to the human eye.
The word carat is taken from the word "carob" which were actually carob seeds that were used in ancient times to balance scales. Carat is the weight of the diamond not the size. Be very aware of this when purchasing a diamond. For instance, when comparing two 1 carat round cut stones. One stone might appear to be larger than the other stone; this goes back to the CUT. An ideal cut 1 carat round diamond should measure about 6.5mm in diameter. The one stone that appears to be significantly larger could be a shallow cut diamond which would not have the same brilliance as the ideal cut stone.
We hope that all of this information has been helpful and educational. Please stop by our store located in Smithfield, N.C. for more information about purchasing diamonds. Let one of our experts sit down with you and go through all of the steps on how to buy a diamond and how to choose a diamond.
No appointment necessary. If you wish to come after hours, just call and we will be happy to stay.
Here at Evans Jewelers, we want to make sure that all of our customers are educated before they purchase their diamonds, whether it is for an engagement ring, or other types of diamond jewelry. Below we will discuss how to buy a diamond and how to choose a diamond.
It is all about the CUT!
The cut of a diamond not only means the shape of the stone, but the proportions and symmetry of the diamond. The word "cut" refers to the reflective properties of the diamond. A good cut is what gives a diamond it's brilliance, the beautiful brightness that comes from the heart of the diamond. The symmetry, the angles, and polish of the diamond are what gives the stone the ability to handle light, which leads to the brilliance and overall look of the stone.
When referring to the color of diamonds we are referring to the presence or absence of color in white diamonds. Many people assume that most diamonds are colorless but in fact a colorless stone is very rare. Most diamonds used in jewelry are nearly colorless with small tints of yellow or brown. The color grading scale for a diamond runs along the alphabet from "D" (being the best) on down through "Z" (yellow or brown in color.) Diamonds graded D-F (colorless) are most valuable because of their rarity. When purchasing a diamond for yourself diamonds with the color grades G-I (near colorless) show virtually no color to the untrained eye.
There are some diamonds that come in colors such as pink, blue, purple, red, green, orange, brown and yellow. These diamonds if they are natural are very rare which in turn causes a higher price for these colored diamonds. They are often categorized as "fancy."
In almost all diamonds you will find some form of an inclusion only the most rare diamonds will be completely flawless. Inclusions are internal or external characteristics of diamonds; these inclusions can sort of be considered a birthmark of the stone. The reason for the inclusions is due to the high pressure and extreme heat that the stones are exposed to in their formation process. These inclusions help gemologists determine whether or not a stone is a natural diamond or not. The grading range for diamonds ranges from F (Flawless) down to I (Included.) All diamonds are graded under a 10X loop to verify all of their inclusions and markings. The presence of most inclusions however does not diminish the value of the stone or its durability.