Diamond clarity

The clarity of a diamond refers to the visible presence of inclusions in the diamond.

A diamond’s clarity classifies the number and type of inclusions. If the stone contains numerous inclusions, these block the reflection and brilliance by absorbing the light.

A diamond with few or microscopic inclusions will have a greater ability to reflect the light and will of course be more costly.

Diamond with no significant inclusions and diamond with numerous inclusions

Learn more about Clarity

Diamond clarity – determining the diamond's clarity

In order to evaluate the clarity of the ​diamonds correctly, a microscope or loupe is used to enlarge the stone 10X. This method is used internationally. The clarity scale is divided into several different categories, ranging from ‘flawless’ to ‘included’ (visible defects).

Diamond clarity grading – the GIA scale

The clarity of a diamond is classified according to the number of inclusions. Clarity ranges from internally flawless (FL-IF), which describes a diamond that has no external or internal inclusions, to included (I1, I2, I3) diamonds, where one can easily see inclusions with the naked eye.

All Hartmann’s diamonds are at the higher end of the clarity spectrum. Carefully chosen so that any stone with obvious inclusions is instantly discarded. We never buy diamonds with inclusions that detract from the stone’s beauty.

rating image

Very few stones have a flawless diamond clarity

In the higher categories, very few diamonds are so flawless that a microscope cannot detect any inclusions. In the lower categories, some diamonds have inclusions that are visible to the naked eye. In the middle categories, shortcomings can be difficult to find, even for the trained eye. Prices can vary substantially. A diamond with a slightly higher clarity can cost an extra several thousand dollars.

A skilled diamond cutter will consider possible inclusions before he or she decides to continue and will ensure that they are reduced to an absolute minimum during the painstaking process of cutting the stone.

Diamond clarity is affected over several million years

Diamonds are formed under extreme conditions deep in the centre of the Earth and take millions of years to create. The process is so prolonged, intense and unpredictable that formations inevitably occur inside the hard crystals. Inclusions are usually described by their shape. Approximately 300 different types of inclusions have been defined.

The most common inclusions, found in nine out of ten stones are: cracks, feathers, crystal bubbles and pinpoints, which can collect and form clouds.

Rough diamond 616 – unsuitable for cutting

It was secretly buried hundreds of kilometres below the earth’s crust for billions of years. And it took a violent volcanic eruption before it could emerge below the surface.
Finally, in 1964, the ‘616’ rough diamond was discovered in the Kimberlite rocks. One of the world’s largest rough diamonds, about the size of an egg; the name ‘616’ refers to its weight in carats (about 123 grams). Unfortunately, the various impurities, inclusions and low clarity make it unsuitable for cutting.

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