What is the best clarity for a diamond engagement ring?
The appeal of a diamond or any other jewelry usually boils down to your personal preference and taste. For this reason, it would be impossible to state what clarity grade is the “best” as you may have your own rationalization when making a purchase decision.
Over the years, I have heard of countless reasons ranging from superstitions (must have clean diamond) to practicality (budget constraints) that cause people to choose a particular clarity grade.
Most of these reasons are valid but there are some that are due to misguided beliefs and misinformation. Anyway, what is important is that you understand how clarity really impacts the beauty of the stone.
Technically speaking, a flawless diamond may have the best clarity grade but that isn’t a guarantee that it will look amazing.
I know there are people who want to buy FL/IF diamonds for symbolic reasons because they only want the best. That’s perfectly fine.
However, for the majority of other consumers who don’t have such requirements, the best diamond clarity grade should be the one that offers you the most value. And in my opinion, eyeclean diamonds within the VS or SI clarity would allow you to get better value for money.
The truth is, most casual viewers cannot tell the difference between an IF or an SI1 diamond BUT it would be easy to notice differences in size. I’ve recently recorded a video that compares a top tier VVS1 diamond ring against an SI1 diamond ring and I want you to watch it in full to see how they look like in reality.
Were you able to notice clarity differences between these 2 engagement rings? If you can’t, don’t you think it is better to use the money saved on a lower clarity grade and invest it into a diamond with better color or bigger carat weight instead?
In my personal opinion, it doesn’t make sense to pay a premium for something that can’t be readily seen or appreciated.
And FYI, here are the listings of the 2 diamonds you saw in the video above. Feel free to click on the images to view the full details and examine the diamonds for yourself under magnification.
The VVS1 diamond (on the left) vs the SI1 diamond (on the right).
It depends on what you are looking for.
If you are on a budget and want to get the biggest bang for your money, the best diamond clarity grade for you is VS2 or SI1. As long as you have eyeballed the diamond and it is eyeclean, there’s really nothing to be worried about.
If you are buying a large sized diamond (bigger than 1.5 carats), the best clarity rating for diamonds of these sizes will be VS2 or better. This is because inclusions become more obvious when carat size increases.
If you are shopping for investment grade diamonds (larger than 10 carats, D color), the best diamond clarity grades would be IF or FL if you can find them.
Both diamonds will look similar when mounted on a ring, but one costs almost twice as much!
Is it worth it to fork out an additional $7,000 just for an internally flawless diamond? Ultimately, that’s a question only you can answer. As long as the diamond is eye clean and you aren’t making a purchase for symbolic purposes, the SI1 option is hands down the better choice in my opinion.
Now, I need to reiterate that there is nothing wrong with going for a higher clarity rating as long as you know that you can get a similar looking stone at significantly lower costs. In the example above, I was able to make an educated judgment to pick an eyeclean SI1 diamond using the 360° videos and grading reports.
You too, can do the same at JamesAllen.com and that’s what you will be learning in a moment. On the next page, I am going to show you comparisons of eye clean diamonds (with images and links) to teach you what are the things to look out for…