Is a SI-1 Clarity Diamond Good Enough?
One of the most common questions, but not just for a SI1 clarity diamond, but for all the others as well. It seems people are constantly being told one thing, and then told another, and usually by people who are trying to sell their diamonds as eye clean when they are not. So here’s how it basically works, and it holds true for about 98% of the diamonds out there. Yes I just made that percentage up, but I’m trying to make you understand exactly what every diamond wholesaler, cutter and dealer knows to hold true on a consistent basis.
IF - (Internally Flawless)
VVS1 - (Very Very Slightly Included 1)
VVS2 - (Very Very Slightly Included 2)
VS1 - (Very Slightly Included 1)
VS2 - (Very Slightly Included 2)
SI1 - (Slightly Included 1)
SI2 - (Slightly Included 2)
I1 - (Included 1)
I2 - (Included 2)
I3 - (Included 3)
Naked Eye & 10x Magnification
All these diamonds gets their clarity grade based on what they look like through a 10x magnification lens, and what they look like with the naked eye (no magnification). Here’s the biggest fact, you will see inclusions (imperfections) on every one of these clarity grades either with the naked eye, or through 10x magnification except for FL.
In most cases with IF, VVS1, VVS2, VS1, VS2, and SI1 clarities you typically just see imperfections under 10x magnification. SI2, I1, I2 and I3 you will see inclusions or imperfections without any aid at all. However there is a GIGANTIC catch to this, and that’s the grading lab.
Diamond Grading Labs make all the difference on whether or not you're looking at "true" SI1 clarity.
Here’s the awful truth about diamond grading. Diamond wholesalers want their diamonds to be graded high. Who wouldn’t? The better the clarity the more money the diamond is worth. Working within this mind frame you will hear the term “subjective” thrown out there quite often, and here’s why. There’s is a major player and trustworthy diamond lab out there. It’s called GIA. The Gemological Institute of America. This company has spent millions developing the diamond grading system. They are the pioneers, and they tell it like it is without exaggerating. This is the top grading lab in the world, and their opinions are based on facts from million dollar equipment, and are so trustworthy that any diamond graded by GIA is considered to be the “End all, be all”. If they say your diamond is SI1 in clarity then there’s absolutely no insurance company, or diamond wholesaler who can over turn this decision
For this reason, any diamond graded by GIA is worth more. Second only to GIA is AGS, third being EGL USA. If these three companies say your diamond is a specific clarity then you can take that to the bank.
Remember, there’s money to be made, and people (wholesalers) want as much as they possibly can. So if a diamond wholesaler gets a batch of diamonds in, and they send these diamonds to be graded at either GIA, AGS or EGL USA and the diamonds come back less favorably graded than they hoped, you can bet the diamond wholesaler will not be happy. They will swear up and down they got it wrong. (Which is not the case). For this reason new diamond grading labs have come to the rescue. These diamond grading labs such as EGL Israel, EGL International use a much more loose diamond grading system to appease the diamond wholesalers and they get their business. But because of the lack of strictness and a policy of “diamonds are subjective”, any diamond graded by any lab outside of GIA, AGS or EGL USA will always be worth less.
What if my SI1 clarity diamond is graded by a lab that is not GIA, AGS, or EGL USA?
In fact, it’s common knowledge that if you purchase a diamond graded by any other company other than GIA, AGS, or EGL USA you can bank on the fact that the diamond will be graded, at the very least, 2 to 3 grades higher than it should be. In other words, when your diamond is graded by anyone other than GIA, AGS or EGL USA that SI1 clarity diamond will most likely be a SI2, I1, or possibly an I2 diamond. There’s a good chance it will show inclusions to the naked eye.
So if you want an eye clean diamond graded by less strict diamond grading companies you’ll want to check out our Advanced Diamond Clarity Chart. This will show you exactly what you need to do to find the perfect diamond despite what grading lab graded your diamond.
If you have any questions, please feel free to give us a call, or send us an email. We’ll be happy to answer any question you may have.
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